Peer Review by chrysanthemums&ink (United States)

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Three's a crowd, and so it becomes two

By: sunny.v

“Is it mine?”

The girl cradles the phone shakily to her ear, fixing her school uniform’s collar. “He couldn’t be anybody’s but yours. I’ve only been with--”

“I’m--we’re too young. What would we tell our parents?” He demands. 
She absently rubs her stomach. “I can’t do this alone.”

“I’m sorry,” he says, sounding frustrated. She squeezes her eyes shut, forcing back tears. He sighs forcefully. “I’ll get a job. Send you money every month.”

“He’ll want to know who you are,” she whispers. “Please, we could be a fami--”

The line goes dead. She stands alone, cradling her stomach.

word count: 99. Ernest Hemingway's ability to leave a story unsaid but so there (see: "Hills Like White Elephants") is so admirable, and I can only hope to have tried my best at doing the same!

Message to Readers

**I JUST saw the error (the lack of a SPACE) between "he demands" and "she absently rubs", my apologies! Please ignore that, it was a computer key error.
*feedback and reviews please!!!
Is there enough room for implication? Did I leave enough unsaid, and can you sympathize with the girl? Did you pick up on the pair's completely different outlooks on this situation?

Peer Review

The first line is brilliantly executed, instantly giving you an idea about what the story is about while still keeping you on your toes. The dialogue and the descriptions are masterfully woven together to paint a poignant image. Additionally, many people already have prior knowledge about a situation like this, which helps us to sympathize with the characters without needing too much introduction. Much more, that this story seems to be a progression of emotion and carries so much weight.

Again, the first line is a perfect introduction. The dialogue is written in a way that suggests something without saying it outright, and it still manages to seem "natural". Also, the visual cues and the body language of the characters is brilliant. It expressed both characters' differing views on the subject and leaves us hurting for both. This reads more like an excerpt than a single flash fiction piece, and it's great.

Actually, I think you put in just the right amount of information really. There's nothing else I think that could be elaborated on. Really, I think if you put anything more, it could be saying too much. As it is now, I feel like a lot of people in this type of situation can relate to it without removing details in order to do that. It's very accessible, is that I think.

Above, I said that this reads more like an excerpt than a single flash fiction piece. Pieces with dialogue and little "clues" like this seem to sacrifice a certain 'poetic flow' to the piece, but honestly, that isn't important. These two characters are so so poignant and it leaves me with so much emotion that I can't put on paper. The situation they're both unwittingly put in is so real, and it makes everything just so... raw. This is honestly one of the best flash fiction pieces I've read on this site, and I might throw a tantrum if this doesn't place.

Reviewer Comments

I've come back to this piece multiple times while drafting my own ff entry, just for inspiration and motivation. Honestly, I'm a little jealous of how good this is, but that just shows how well this is going to do. Any suggestions are just that, suggestions, and feel free to ignore me on anything you disagree on (although this is a pretty crappy review anyways, given that I didn't give much criticism at all :/). Don't be afraid to message me abt what I've said or to ask me questions about things, I'm always up for it! Wishing you the best! <3 Lmao this is probably full of typos.