Opening Lines

Today, to celebrate the last gasp of summer, we are writing the opening lines for the picture below. Join in by adding your own opening lines.

IMG_3382_3Julie: She waited until they went into the water to rinse the sand off the baby. Then she moved in, and opened the cooler, exchanging the fruit punch with her own, doctored brew. She went back to her blanket, happy that her task was completed so easily, unaware of the couple’s habit of switching fruit punch with wine in order to bring it on the beach. That was her first mistake. Her second was waiting around to see what happened.

Sherry: The Ryans staked out their spot on Hampton Beach like it was any other Saturday but instead of walking into the ocean they grabbed their baby and walked away.

Barb: She staggered, half-walking, half-swimming out of the surf as a wave crested behind her. Lying on the sand, gasping for breath, she looked around at all the happy families and wondered, “Is it really possible no one saw that?”

Edith: I noticed the woman unfurling that blue umbrella on my morning walk. She and her husband sank into their striped chairs, their beach caddy now as empty as the stroller, the man extracting a Bud from the cooler that sat between them. When I strode past in the afternoon, a strapped-in baby with pudgy red cheeks howled from the stroller as the woman tried to convince the baby to take the bottle she shoved in its mouth. The man snapped the umbrella closed.

Liz: He walked past the spot where the family had been just moments earlier – mother, father, baby. The chairs, stroller and blanket all remained, empty – the only hint they’d ever been there at all.

Jessie: The beach was a godless place for sure. While mostly naked, oiled-up masses worshipped the sun, only one unremarked family was spirited away by the Rapture.

Readers: What’s your opening line?

33 Thoughts

  1. Story starter! I love it.
    The beach was empty while he set the scene: chairs, blankets, umbrella, tote, ice chest, stroller. He took particular care placing the stroller. A mother would not face her baby into the sun. After, he walked along the breaking waves and returned, an hour later, to sit on his towel and watch. And wait. The first person to steal something would be the one.

  2. The sea of umbrellas was dizzying in the relentless heat as she searched for an open spot. There, a vacant dime of sand for her towel and umbrella and she’d be hard to pick out from the masses, just one of many. “Act innocent,” her inner mantra repeated, “Act innocent.”

  3. It was late afternoon when Barry got the call about the abandoned beach chair and baby stroller. “Did anyone see who laid their stuff out here?” He asked. The lifeguard flashed a smile at an underaged girl and shook his head no. Barry stepped under the lopsided umbrella and peeled back the bright beach towel. A dead face stared up at him.

  4. Beach patrol had walked past the deserted chairs all day. People often marked their spots on the crowded beach and returned later after spending time on the boardwalk. It wasn’t until 5 hours into his shift that Patrolmen Bishop noticed the stroller. If the family had really been spending time browsing the shops on the boardwalk, wouldn’t they have needed the stroller for their chilld? He approched the spot that had been abandoned all day and looked through the items for a clue as to who had been here. His search turned up nothing until he lifted the lid of the cooler. He fell back into the sand at the grisly sight before him.

  5. Why do all these losers get trashed, then get it on in their dumpy beach motels, then, 9 months later, pump out another baby like it’s all no big deal? Well, not this time, though Sheryl. Not this damn time.

      1. Sun! Finally, we had some sun! And it all went downhill from there…

  6. Max glanced around at the mess they’d made. Couldn’t they even spend a day at the beach without everything being thrown hither and yon? His need for neat and orderly had been quashed since he’d asked Miranda into his life. He glanced toward the water, wondering how long she planned to keep the children in the freezing water. If he was going to do it, now would be a good time. He’d run out of patience and really he didn’t want this for his life anyway. They’d all be better off. He picked up his wallet, his towel and his sandals. Casting one last glance toward the water, he walked off.

  7. If you like your flesh roasted, slathered in sauce, cooked to a pink tinge, and served with cole slaw, you head over to Redbones Barbecue in Sommerville. But if you want to skip service with cole slaw you head to Revere Beach.

    I was at Revere Beach wondering how I’d managed to lose a five hundred pound man in a Speedo.

  8. You can get away with anything if you are carrying a baby. Anything. Including murder. It is no coincidence that these chairs are empty. Shark got them, I tell you. Shark. I was carrying the baby, so the baby is safe.

  9. And I have to add what Mary McDonald posted to my Facebook notice about this blog:

    This is a great prompt. I’m sitting here with my 21 month old granddaughter on my lap and she says, “The beach, the stroller, Daddy’s chair, where baby?”

  10. We have devised our strategies over years of crowded OOB Sundays. Tourists on top of each other in their Speedos and bikinis hidden by the hanging bellies and love handles. All we need is a 10 foot circumference of space to pretend we are someplace more exclusive for our pitiful 5 day $500 vacation. So all you do is get to the beach at 6am, set up the props of a screaming baby day at the beach… and be the only people to sit next to them. The most peace you can get at OOB.

  11. She pushed her pudgy fingers into the sand and lifted herself, butt first, to a wobbly stance. The alarm she sounded began in a tentative whimper and quickly modulated into a wail. I looked around and shook my head. Who leaves a baby alone on a crowded beach?

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