Inner Wall

Some walls are built up stone by stone.  Others word by word.

Ardmore observatory enclosig wall4452094_732df662

 © Lairich Rig

“The wall may be crumbling, but it still keeps the peasants out.”

Jaenna’s mother had been saying that since she was a child.  The wall was even more dilapidated now.

Jaenna could relate.

A poor lord made for a lonely manor.  And a daughter past her prime.

Jaenna gazed out her window, over the wall, at the farmer woman.  Ridel.  She’d first seen Ridel when they were both girls.  They grew up together.  Ridel marrying, having babies, working, being useful.  Jaenna here, alone, at the window.

Jaenna had never spoken to Ridel.  Nobles don’t talk to peasants.  Her mother insisted.

Jaenna watched Ridel work in her yard.  She felt herself sinking into her stool, hardening there, dying slowly from lack of interest.

Suddenly, she stood.  She would go through the gate, all by herself.  She would approach Ridel and say…  What do you say to a stranger?  Jaenna balked.

Her feet didn’t move.  She stared at Ridel.  Doing this.  Now doing that.  Now going inside.

Jaenna sat.  The wall was stronger than it looked.

My entry for this week’s Friday Fictioneers challenge — Thanks to Rochelle for organizing it!  And to David Stewart for the actual (contemporary) photo prompt:

old wall david-stewart2© David Stewart

Click on the blue frog to see the other authors’ stories!


35 thoughts on “Inner Wall

  1. Dear Joy,

    You won’t be ostracized for going over the word limit. 😉 I have to admire those of you who take part in more than one challenge a week. I’m doing good to write one.

    There’s more than one wall in your story. The ones made without stones and mortar are the hardest to scale. Nicely done.



    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for understanding, Rochelle! Glad you liked the story. I was thinking of how castles often have an inner wall and outer wall (the real stone kind), and trying to get across that double meaning.

      As far as doing more than one challenge… can you say “procrastination”? It’s a great excuse for not working on my other ongoing stories and novel. Oh look, another challenge prompt, whee!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, exactly. Glass castles sound even worse — at least for those safe/trapped inside, on full view of those outside. Luckily for the people of Eneana, glass technology is not that advanced. However, with *magic* such a thing would certainly be possible. Hm….


    • Thank you — when I saw the dilapidated wall with the house beyond, my first thought was whether the wall was keeping the viewer out or keeping the inhabitants protected inside. It fascinates me how the various writers involved take the same prompt and go in so many different directions with it!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I hope she breaks through the wall someday. This story has such contemporary relevance. There are so many people that need to look beyond the walls that they’ve built around themselves, barriers of income, ethnicity, religion….

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for saying so! Yes, I do hope to make my stories resonate, that even though they take place in a completely different world, the same kinds of people live there. Another story that deals with the racial barriers in this world a little more is From the Table’s Eye part 5 — check it out if you have the time (you don’t have to read the previous ones to understand this one).


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