Danse Macabre

Plucked strings – she bends her knee. Whole orchestra – she whips her leg around, turns once and clatters to the floor. Not trace of legendary grace. Even the music’s mocking her.

She can’t manage two, never mind thirty-two.

She remembers the long nights in the studio practicing both sides. At fifteen, she though herself indestructible. Mastering thirty-two fouettés en tournant on both legs would give her an edge over the competition.

Who is she without that edge?

‘Again, Emily? You’re supposed to rest. No more dancing.’

The nurse helps her into the bed.

‘Turn the music off, please?’

No more dancing.


This week, the Literary Lion wants us to dance.

15 thoughts on “Danse Macabre

    1. I don’t know why the 100-word story prompt didn’t get published on Story A Day, but here is the entire post if you want it:

      The Prompt:

      Write a story in exactly one hundred words.


      – Write about a moment of change: a discovery, a realisation, a new beginning or a parting of ways.
      – There’s no room for setting the mood – jump straight in with the action.
      – Snippets of overheard conversations or strange headlines make for good starting points.
      – You don’t have to hit the word limit in your first draft. Write the story, then find a way to tell it in one hundred words.
      – Don’t be afraid of leaving gaps. Readers are good at filling those in.
      – Not sure where to start? Here you go: “The letter arrived without a stamp.”

      Now go write!

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