He knocked on the door, the bouquet of daffodils bright and cheery in his fist while the day was dreary and wet with low slung clouds. He smiled brightly as she opened the door.
“Henry! Those are beautiful. Are they for me?” Narcissus asked and held open the door for Henry to enter.
Henry nodded and slipped in the door, slipping off his rubber boots before he tracked in water onto her pristine floor. He thrust out the bouquet and was relieved when Narcissus took the flowers from him and motioned for him to follow her.
“Would you like some cookies? I just baked some almond drop cookies. And I can put on the kettle for some tea.”
Henry nodded again and trailed after her. He loved her house. It always smelled good, like her. Warm, sweet, and a little bit like vanilla. She always had pretty flowers everywhere, but daffodils and narcissus were her favorites since they were her name.
“You’re quiet today, Henry. What kind of tea would you like?” She asked as she reached up on a shelf in the kitchen for a square vase that was bright turquoise.
“Do you have the Woolong tea?” He asked and sat down in his favorite chair at her kitchen table. It faced the stove and he could watch her fix the tea.
The Oolong?” She clarified, and he nodded. “I do have that tea. I just had a new tin arrive, so I’m dying to try it. Why don’t you get the poppy teapot down.”
Henry grabbed the step stool and got the cream and red poppy teapot down from the top shelf and filled it with hot water from the kettle. He waited for the porcelain to heat then poured out the water. Narcissus scooped four teaspoons into the pot and Henry filled it again with almost boiling water. They worked together quietly and perfectly as they had been making tea together for a long time. As long as Henry could remember.
While the pot was steeping, she pulled out an eggplant colored bowl filled with crisp cookies that were covered in sliced almonds. They made Henry’s mouth water. She pulled out mix-matched plates and set them on the table next to the vase of daffodils.
Henry filled the creamer with milk and found the little spoons she liked to stir the tea, then she was pouring the tea into white cups. Henry leaned in and sniffed the steam, fogging his black glasses. Narcissus laughed and he smiled.
She fixed her tea and he fixed his with just a little milk and a lump of sugar she dropped into his cup with the little tongs. She passed him the bowl of cookies and he took two.
“Now, Henry. Tell me how your days was. Tell me what you learned in third grade today?”
“Okay, Aunt Narcissus,” Henry answered and took a bite of cookie before he started to tell her about the horrible fractions he was learning in school.
So the assignment for Day 4: a story in a single image. This is actually an easy assignment for me to do because one of my favorite things to do is to take a picture and write about it. Any picture, though I didn’t really like any of the ones suggested with the assignment. Fortunately they directed me to Unsplash where the pictures are completely free and high resolution. I urge you to take a look because license free images are not easy to find.
I do hope you enjoy this piece of flash fiction. I could have gone so many different ways with this, but as I wrote, I started picturing Timmy in The Sea is Blue where he goes to visit an older friend. It’s one of my favorite books. Sometimes I think I might make a good aunt.