The Death of Mr. Richardson

This is about five words over. Sorry, Michelle, but it’s your fault for posting a picture prompt with so much story.

“It took me a long time to understand that what had happened between us was twisted. He’d trained his lens on me before I knew who I was and for years after I lived as though only his focus made me real, as if I didn’t know who I was if he wasn’t …framing me.”

Danisha stopped typing. She felt like she needed a shower. She looked at the picture that had started it all. At the child in the background doing childish things and the other girl, looking on, hair pulled in to a pony tail. And then at the woman-child who was for a time the centre of the famous now infamous photographer’s imagination. Tossled morning-after hair, a cigarette that wasn’t a mere prop, a dress fit for a girl older than… how old was she in that picture…Danisha checked her notes…13.

At thirteen, she’d been crushing on Brad Pitt but hadn’t yet quite put away Barbie.

“A girl is not a woman. She needs protection from vultures. But Hollyweird is the kind of fairytale in which mothers and fathers shove their babies in to the wolf’s maw.”

It was pure chance the way everything had come together. News of his death by evisceration, and the scandalous pictures and videos the tossing of his studio had turned up travelling across the world to the vineyard in Italy, where Danisha had gone to be a writer. “It’s a good place to be a cliché,” the woman who bore only a fading resemblance to the girl in the picture had said in the dry way she said everything. She had retreated there years earlier. And now his death had put her in a talkative mood. “They’ll come anyway,” she said.

It would be Danisha’s biggest headline yet; if she could just get through writing it.


One thought on “The Death of Mr. Richardson

  1. Pingback: Photo-Fiction #56 | Random_Michelle

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