Daily Prompt – A Plot of Earth – Flash Fiction / Short Story – “Losing The Plot”

Daily Prompt – A Plot of Earth
by Michelle W. on February 20, 2013

“You’re given a plot of land and have the financial resources to do what you please. What’s the plan?”

The plan is to write a story Hannibal!

[I love it when a plan comes together!]

Losing the Plot (by David Ellis)

It was finally the big day of lot number #56 at the local Land & Property auction.

This was a prime piece of real estate left behind by a lonely old spinster with too many cats (and no beneficiaries – she’d been too batty to even leave the premises to them, them kitties didn’t get a sausage). This land was such a magnificent patch, it had attracted a lot of rich investors, all with specific agendas.

Mr Featherstone (slightly balding, puffy eyes, beaked nose) wanted to construct a private hospital to satisfy the hypochondriacal tendencies of his wife.
Mr Motley (spinach chin beard, impossibly long legs, fond of gold rings and other ugly male jewellery) desired a decent space to develop a block of flats.
Mr Collura (slightly sleazy, puffing a cigar, a big shot) was keen to establish both a casino and Gentleman’s Club because he wanted to be famous like that Stringcheesefellow.
Mrs Crawford (snooty, glass of Pimms, a touch of hoity-toityness) – fancied turning the area into a petting zoo or a conservation park.

Mr Featherstone noticed a young girl playing with her hair and looking wistfully at the area, sadness framing her freckly face.

“Why so sad little one?”

“I want to buy the land but I only have a penny.”

She shuffled awkwardly on her feet and sniffed.

“OK then Missie…”

“M’not Missie. I’m Mindy.”

“OK then Mindy – if you can tell me what you will do with the land for a penny and it’s better than any of our ideas then I’ll buy it for you and sell it to you for that shiny penny!”

Mindy wrinkled her nose for a few seconds, whilst stroking her chin.

“I would like to build…..”


“A prison.”

Mrs Crawford gasped theatrically and spilled some of the ice out of her Pimms glass. The other buyers also couldn’t believe their ears.

“A prison, child?”

Mindy looked defiant.

“Yes. One of them with the bars and everythin’.”

“Aren’t you a little young to know about those kinds of places?”

“No, my parents used to take me to one all the time. They even left me there for the day.”

“How ghastly for you my dear!”

“I wasn’t the only one there, it was the same for many other families with kids like me but we all got to go into the yard at lunchtime.” Mindy folded her arms.

“With all of the other criminals?” Mrs Crawford squeaked in horror. “Good heavens!”

All of the buyers were now beginning to become more and more alarmed at how nonchalant Mindy was being over the whole situation.

“But why would you go to a prison child?”

“To learn things Miss.”

“Seems like a rather extreme lesson to be learning at your age!”

Mr Featherstone seemed to twig at this point.

“You don’t mean a prison, do you Mindy – you mean a school?”

“Ummm,….yes Mister…” Mindy bit her lip “…but it’s like going to a prison.”

“So why are you so upset?”

“Our school burnt down and now they are sad because there is nowhere to build a new one. If I told them I was here trying to buy a new spot for a penny they would think that I really had lost the plot!”

Mindy didn’t get to spend her penny that day.

Her new-found friends however clubbed together and built her a brand new school anyway, on another patch of land close to where the original one perished.

When the school re-opened to the public, many parents remarked at how beautiful the building was and that it must have cost many a pretty penny and the teachers simply replied “No, not many, just Mindy’s!”

For more articles based on this prompt, have a little clicky on the posties below:-

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20 thoughts on “Daily Prompt – A Plot of Earth – Flash Fiction / Short Story – “Losing The Plot”

  1. Pingback: This Land Is My Land – A Daily Prompt Post | Edward Hotspur

    • Thanks for the pingback Edward. I hope that one day you get your utopian area with your fabulous orchards and vineyards. I’d be happy to go halves with you – after they’ve given you the land of course!

  2. Pingback: What I would un-invent | Blog of The Imaginator

    • Thank you for your kind comment Mihir, it means alot to me and you’re very welcome for the pingback. I try to include everybody that I can when I participate in the Daily Prompts, which is often now!

  3. Pingback: Daily Prompt: A Plot of Earth | Joe's Musings

    • Good to hear from you Jules! Thanks for the praise of my story. You do so many poems that I’ve been unable to comment individually but I find them fascinating and so clever that you number them based on the days of the month too, they are always full of quirky takes on life and gentle humour. I’ve subscribed to your new Flashy Fiction thing, lovely to see you spreading your wings in this area, will leave a comment on that one when I’ve read them! Have a good one and chat again soon. David

      • Thank you for your gracious comment. I write at least one verse everyday – as an observance of any and everything. Sometimes I have a theme for the month (I started this about two years ago – though I have been writing for well over 4 decades). Other times not. Thank you for looking into my ‘fiction’ when you have the time.
        Cheers, Jules

    • Thank you Melanie, so nice of you to say so. It’s actually taking me longer to include the links of my fellow bloggers than it is to write the pieces(!) which I don’t rush, some pieces just come out/come together more quickly than others. I post regularly so be sure to continue to check this place out and in the meantime, I aim to read some of your pieces in the near future. Have a great day.

      • Thanks – I’m not too familiar with how it is to write fiction. I’ve only written a story or two, and they just tumbled out unbidden and now reside safely in my laptop where nobody can see them.
        Nonfiction seems much less daunting to me. Keep at it!

  4. Goodness me, I love Mindy’s character! Her body language and speech made the story very exciting and humorous! You also created natural dialogues and I felt like an observer in their midst while the story progressed. Thanks for this, David. I’m off to the next one.

  5. Hi there Nyasha – many thanks for the information regarding ReadWave, kind of you to point me in their direction, I will look into them further. Also, thank you for dropping by my blog and hope you find some things you like!

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