Life in progress

#JusJoJan prompt the 7th – “Caught”


(FICTION) (Thanks to Di at for the idea for the story.)


Icy fingers of fear skittered up Petra’s spine as she turned toward the sound in the dark corner of the wine cellar. The gurgle was followed by a quiet laugh. Definitely not a mouse.

“This wine is crappy,” came a deep voice from the direction of the far corner.

Petra turned slowly to find a bearded man in a dirty gray-green raincoat and pants to match. He was drinking “Mother’s” wine. “Don’t hurt me,” Petra squeaked.

“I’m not going to hurt you. Just came in here to get outta the cold.”

“Well, I’m sorry, but you have to get out of here,” Petra said, sounding braver than she felt. She started edging back in the direction of the stairs.

“Nonsense,” the man said. “Why don’t you come and join me. You look like you could use a drink.” He held the bottle at arm’s length.

“No,” Petra said. “Get out of here or I’ll … “I’ll …”

“Tell ‘Mother’?”

Petra’s eyes narrowed. “How do you know ‘Mother’?”

“Pfft. I worked here years ago.” He hoisted the bottle again. “Worst twenty years of my life, my employment in this house was.”

“Why do you come back, then?”

The man laughed. “To piss off ‘Mother.’”

“That’s it,” Petra said, balling her fists and turning once again for the stairs. “I’m going to call the police.”

“Good luck with that!” The man called out from behind her. The last thing she heard before she closed the cellar door was gurgling from the back corner of the wine cellar.

She ran into Geeves on the way through the kitchen to find the man of the house.

“Where’s the bottle of wine for ‘Mother’?” he asked.

“It’s all gone! And there’s a man—”

Geeves headed for the stairs before she finished her sentence. She followed him and waited at the top of the staircase, listening for the inevitable scuffle.

And she waited. And waited. A couple of minutes later, Geeves appeared at the bottom of the stairs.

As he climbed them, he said, “There’s no one here. And all the wine is gone.” Geeves looked her right in the eye. “But I did find an empty bottle. And you. are. fired,” he said, poking Petra in the collarbone with every syllable of her dismissal.

(To be continued on Friday.)

(Di’s prompt was “Petra as a name, wine cellar as a setting, and ‘getting caught’ as your what if. “)

Here are the JusJoJan Rules:

1. Just Jot It January starts January 1st, but it’s never too late to join in! Here, we run on the honour system; the “jot it” part of JusJoJan means that anything you jot down, anywhere (it doesn’t have to be a post, it can even be a grocery list), counts as a “jot.” If it makes it to your blog that day, great! If it waits a week to get from a sticky note to your screen, no problem!

2. I’ll post prompts at 2am my time (GMT -5). The prompt will be the word in quotation marks in the title of my 2am post. You don’t have to follow the prompt every day, but that will be where you leave your link for others to see. You’ll get a prompt for every day except Wednesday, when the prompt is simply my One-Liner Wednesday and on Saturday, when your prompt will be the Friday Reminder and Prompt for #SoCS, which will appear at about 9:30am Friday. Each prompt post will include the rules.

3. Please ping back or link to the daily prompt. To ping back, just copy the URL from the daily prompt post, and paste it anywhere in your post. Check to make sure your link shows up where you want it to, and go back occasionally to see other bloggers’ entries – the more you visit others, the more they’ll visit you! Note: A) The newest pingbacks will be at the top of the comments section. B) Ping backs only work if you’re blogging on WordPress. Everyone else must paste a link manually.

4. Tag your post JusJoJan and/or #JusJoJan.

5. Write anything! Any length will do! It can even be a photo or a drawing – you’re going to title it, right? There’s your jot!

6. If your post is NSFW, do not ping back. Please leave your link in the comments with a warning.

7. If you’d like to, use the JusJoJan badge so that others can find your post more easily.

8. Have fun!

Author: Linda G. Hill

There's a writer in here, clawing her way out.

28 thoughts on “#JusJoJan prompt the 7th – “Caught”

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  3. This is turning out to be quite the mystery! Loving it. 🙂


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  11. Poor Petra. Hopefully, there’s something better out there for her.


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  14. Well, sounds like truthfully she might be better off out of there! Well done.


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  24. I call that unfair dismissal! Looking forward to more. 💜💜

    Liked by 2 people

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