March 22, 2012

Trifecta Week Nineteen, 2nd story

I couldn't resist. I had another use of the word that I didn't see reflected in other stories. Of course I am known for my inexactitude so it may well be there somewhere. This is my second entry for this week's Trifecta word -- clean. Except ... on yet another review of the third definition, I'm not so certain I've used the word correctly for the challenge so ... ya. There's that. Feel free to let me know.

The Trifecta Writing Challenge is to write a story with no less than 33 words and no more than 333. Each story must use Webster dictionary's third definition for a word supplied by the fine editors (or gleaned from writers' Get to Know Me posts).

This week's word is clean \ˈklēn\, used as an adjective:

3 a : free from moral corruption or sinister connections of any kind
   b : free from offensive treatment of sexual subjects and from the use of obscenity
   c : observing the rules : fair

The Betrayal

Every year it was the same story. No matter how hard each of us worked, no matter the time and effort we invested in our own studies, the same person took home each and every scholarship, and each and every bursary made available to our tiny school. Whispers of collusion were grimly shrugged off with excuses of our town’s desperate need.

The rest of us would have been more bitter about the clean sweep at the time, but Suzette was as destitute as we were, and she showed true promise. Ultimately we believed our sacrifices were for a greater good.

Okay, so perhaps the villagers were naive in their hopes she’d choose to return to our impoverished northern outpost to set up her medical practice over the comfortable life of an big-city doc in the South. At the time we were certain she was our only hope.

After all, she justified during her triumphant visit home armed with Godiva chocolates for all, it wasn’t like she owed us anything. She’d worked hard, she’d put in her time. She deserved the life she was living.


  1. Oh, I liked this one. I was always intensely competitive about academics, and anyone doing better than me had me screaming "collusion" at least.

    Also, I am feeling you on the "[s]he's worked hard, she'd put in her time." Makes me want to do some more screaming.

    Also, I now really want some chocolate.

  2. I enjoyed your entry. It sounds like collusion...even Godiva chocolates can't help. Well, not that much ;)

  3. Karen, this might be one of my favourite Trifecta pieces I've read of yours. I'm not convinced that clean sweep worked for our third definition, but I thought the writing was fantastic. 'Whispers of collusion were grimly shrugged off...'. I love that line.

    Thanks for linking up (again!) and sorry (again!) that my comments didn’t quite make it in before the new post went up. Rest assured it was read in time; I was just having a few technical issues! Hope you’ll be back for the weekend challenge.

  4. Ah, the whole obligation/deserving theme. Know it well, and thank you for putting it so cleanly (get it?) I love that your writing is so clear and unaffected.