Today’s writing prompt is all about perspective and capturing what a character is thinking and feeling. Keep reading to see the full prompt and my completed version of it.

Today’s Writing Prompt: Flight Delay

Write from the perspective of someone who is wasting time in an airport due to a flight delay. Consider: What are they seeing and doing and feeling? Where are they supposed to be heading? Write from the first-person point of view. And try to incorporate metaphors into what you write today if you’d like an additional challenge.

Completed Version of Today’s Writing Prompt

Delay From Paradise, by K.E. Creighton

“How about this one?” he asked as he placed a hat on his head. The hat was neon green with a large palm tree in the center of it and a Velcro strap in the back. I shook my head trying to smile, inevitably unable to lift the corners of my lips. Would I ever smile again? I started to wonder.

“Really? I think I would blend right in.” He winked at me before placing the hat back on the shelf with the others and started walking toward the overpriced snacks in the gift shop.

Our flight from paradise had been delayed, in more ways than one. And I wasn’t sure when I would ever see the white sand and turquoise glow of a beach in person again, or if I ever would want to after this trip.

When we originally arrived at this airport in the tropics, we were on our way to celebrate our nuptials poolside with sugary cocktails served in coconuts with umbrellas in them. But as soon as we stepped off the plane, my husband of fewer than twenty-four hours had collapsed at the gate.

At the hospital, they said his prognosis was dire and he had less than six months to live. My husband said they were being dramatic, however, then insisted we stay and enjoy our trip anyway, and that we weren’t to speak about what the doctors told us until we arrived back home. So we didn’t. Instead, we went swimming in the ocean and paddle-boarded and drank too much champagne by the pool every night.

Now our flight back home is delayed by hours and so are my considerations for the future, deeply unsettling my stomach. At first, I thought it a blessing, to delay the inevitable and stay in paradise for a while. But this is nothing more than a dream I know I’m going to wake up from with blinding terror and severe disorientation and jet lag. So I don’t want to drag it out much longer.

He stands there grinning at me as he holds a pack of chocolate candy in his hand. And as much as I want to do whatever is in my power to do, to keep him grinning at me like that forever, I’m acutely aware that I can’t now or later. I can’t live in this moment either. I can’t. Because my trip to paradise is already over, regardless of the delay.

[All Rights Reserved by K.E. Creighton and Creighton’s Compositions LLC. The above work is a piece of fiction. All names and locations referred to are the product of the author’s imagination and are used entirely for fictional purposes. Any similarities to real-life persons or places are purely coincidental.]

If you complete this writing prompt, share your draft by tagging #DailyDraftsAndDialogues and @kecreighton on Medium, WordPress, or Facebook.

One comment

  1. She was ready to go home. The medical training and dealing with the specialists, nurses, other interns, and patients had taken a toll on her nerves. Her residency was fortunately only 45 minutes drive away, and she wasn’t scheduled to report for 2 months. This was her time to relax and recoup. Family and friends and the holidays sounded incredible.
    It was a standard shuttle flight from a regional hub in New Mexico to Ontario. Total flight time was just under 3 hours. She planned to sleep the entire time and enjoy a welcome home dinner with her mom and sisters, although the in-laws might be up to their usual tricks! She felt ready to deal with Ron and Sean, even show them up on the video gaming front!
    She took her seat about two rows from the rear of the plane, and the window seat assured her of the maximum privacy. Her visits to the restroom had been timed to assure little or no need for a trip to the restroom in-flight. She had taken her copy of the New England Journal of Medicine, and a copy of Modern Medicine.
    After stowing her overnight bag, and taking her seat, she felt herself nodding off as the flight left the tarmac. She was nudged awake by a flight attendant, asking her to accompany them to the front of the plane. Apparently, her title of intern had been on the flight manifest!
    The flight attendant took her to the small lounge area, and she notice a middle-aged man holding his chest! She took his vitals, and realized he was not in immediate danger. However, she was relieved to read his prescription that the attendant had fished out of his travel bag. It was nitro, and she gave him one. He was relaxed and stable about 5 minutes later.
    She left a text with his primary doctor in Ontario, describing the incident. About 10 minutes later, she was requested to stay with him, since the de-pressuring of the landing tended to put the patient into cardiac distress. The doctor assured her that another nitro pill would be fine, as long as it was 2 hours after the first.
    She thanked the doctor, and cleared the nearby seat to stand vigil. She read her magazine and checked his vitals every 15 minutes. As they were told they were 30 minutes out, the flight attendant asked her to help out at the rear of the plane. An elderly lady was hyperventilating, and the oxygen tank was available. She sighed, and followed her to the rear of the plane.
    After taking her vitals, she had her breath into a paper bag. Then, after giving her oxygen, she got her color back, and her vitals were stable. She was kept in the rear area pending landing.
    The intern moved back to the front lounge, and the first patient seemed okay. When the pilot announced final approach, she reached for the nitro pills. As his pulse began to become erratic, she gave him another nitro pill, almost exactly 2 hours after the first. His vitals stabilized, and he handled the landing fine.
    Before any of the passengers got off, the elderly lady was taken off on a stretcher. The primary doctor boarded to check on the first patient, and pronounced him stable. He shook the intern’s hand, then gave her his card. She had just met the main trainer for her residency!
    A flight attendant fetched her tote, and as she accompanied the doctor and patient off the plane, he thanked her and showed her his badge. He was a US Air Marshall!
    The captain caught up to her, and asked her if she would like to meet the local airline executive. The airline executive was told about the incident, and handed her a lifetime unlimited pass to fly the airline anywhere at anytime. She was speechless, but the pilot assured her that her actions had made everyone’s holiday!

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