Blanket Fort: a flash fiction story

No. 31/100 flash fiction stories

Oliver knew it had been a mistake to delegate the task of setting up the living room for movie night. In hindsight, he berated himself for trusting the task to anyone else. 

Especially his teenage boys. 

“What do you think, Dad?” Ricky stood proudly and crossed his arms, admiring his handiwork: a canopy of blankets that covered the whole living room. Evan stood beside his brother with a sheepish smile and an apologetic look in his eyes. 

Oliver knew exactly what had happened. 

“Well…” he began, not wanting to burst Ricky’s pride.

“I knew it!” Evan blurted out suddenly, turning to shove his brother’s shoulder. “I told you he wanted us to clean!” 

Ricky’s face fell. “But you said to get the living room ready—and I thought a blanket fort would be an awesome way to watch the movie.” 

Oliver sighed and massaged his forehead. Christine would know exactly what to say, no doubt, but she’d taken Vicky on a “girl’s vacation,” something about bonding. It had sounded like a great idea…until now.

“It’s okay, Dad.” Ricky shrugged with a half-smile. “I’ll take it down.” He reached over toward the nearest blanket corner clipped to a chair. 

“Wait,” Oliver said before he knew what he was going to say next. He paused, an awkward silence filling the room as both boys stared at him expectantly. “Um… It’s okay.” 

Evan blinked. “Dad, we know you like things clean. Or at least I do.” He glanced at Ricky with a raised eyebrow. 

“Yeah, yeah, but…” Oliver gulped. Instead of seeing clutter, he tried to see excitement as Ricky had when he was building this. “I can get used to it for a little bit. As long as everything is cleaned up after the movie,” he added quickly. 

Both Ricky’s and Evan’s faces broke out in huge grins. “Yes!” Ricky exclaimed, pumping his fist. 

“This is really cool, Dad, “ Evan said as he scrambled under the blanket fort. He collapsed into a pile of pillows and laughed.

Oliver steeled himself and stooped to shuffle under a blanket. He gingerly sat down as Ricky got the movie started. And to his surprise, as the film played, Oliver didn’t think about the slightly off smell of the blankets and pillows or the disastrous mess. 

Instead, he simply enjoyed spending time with his boys. 

. . .

I got the idea for this post from the Merriam-Webster word of the day, which was “delegate” (the verb) on the day I wrote this. It was a fun challenge! If you ever need a quick writing prompt, I highly recommend checking out the word of the day.

Happy writing!

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When you write as much as I do, you have to take frequent breaks from sitting. A standing desk (not a whole desk, but a mini desk that will sit on top of my current desk with my laptop, keyboard, and mouse and extend upward) will allow me to continue working while maintaining that good blood flow to my brain. Thank you so much for your support that allows me to keep producing free content. God bless you! ♥️ E.J.


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