Skip to content

An Amateurish Mistake – Flash Fiction

May 1, 2016

An Amateurish Mistake

Terry enjoyed her amateur hobby. Probably too much. She enjoyed capturing images on her phone, then adding them to her collection on her computer. Later, she would edit them, turn them into collages and then post them on Pinterest. This gave her the needed reprieve from the dull job of an accountant. It was also her dirty little secret. She posted anonymously.

After a long day of crunching numbers, Terry settled down at her desk with her phone and computer. She clicked the photo ap and clasped her hand over her mouth. These were not her photos! She checked the phone. It looked like her phone. Same cover. Same color. Same make and model. The phone numbers were her contacts. The text messages were hers from family and friends. The calendar held her upcoming events. She sat there puzzled for a long moment.

She clicked the photo ap again and scrolled through the pictures. These were far better than any she had ever captured. A better eye for details. Exquisite close-ups of people and things. Beautiful landscapes. Colorful displays. Whoever took these pictures was no amateur.

How they ended up on her phone though was a complete mystery. She mentally scrolled through the past few days. When had she last uploaded pictures to her computer? She checked. Three days ago. She ran through the past three days in her mind. It was a work week, so she had the phone with her each day. Had she left the phone at her desk while she went for coffee? She couldn’t remember. Had she left it unattended at the library, the post office, the dry cleaners, or the restaurants she’d visited? Her mind was a jumbled mess. All she could remember was that she had taken pictures all three days, but none of them were on her phone.

She had two choices – delete the gorgeous pictures or claim them as her own. She grappled with the moral and ethical dilemma. Finally, she made her decision. She added the photos to her computer, edited them, and turned them into collages. She sat there for a long moment holding her breath. With a shaking finger, she clicked the button and put them on Pinterest.

Terry shut down her computer and went on about her day and the following day and the day after that. A week passed and she reveled in the shares and comments. She basked in the glory as she watched her collages reach new records for pins. She swelled with pride, forgetting all about her crime. And then the text message arrived. She didn’t recognize the sender.

“You stole my work. Now I will steal your life.”

Terry didn’t show up at her job the next day or the day after that. Friends and family couldn’t reach her. Her home was deserted. The police found no trace of her. Terry had simply vanished.

Pinterest buzzed with excitement. Anonymous collages began appearing on the site, always showing the back of a woman with a phone in her hand taking pictures of various people and things. No one could identify the woman, but the phone looked shockingly familiar.

©2016 Lori Carlson. All rights reserved.

(529 Words)

Each day in May, I will be participating in the StoryADay in May. Here are today’s prompts:

Via Julie – Write a story in 30 mins. (Note: written in the time allotted. Only edited for spelling)

Via Guest prompter, Jonathan MaberryWhen Terry began scrolling through her phone, none of the photos she found were hers.

  1. How does that even happen?! she has someones elses phone probably but it has her contacts but those pictures aren’t hers? bleh! lori u made me all confused!! but good story. Lol keep making some

  2. Now THAT was creepy but so well written. I was not aware of this challenge (sigh) should I or shouldn’t I? Maybe try a few…you write beautifully and I only knew you through poetry and haiku…Oliana aka Cheryl-Lynn

  3. The moral is, of course, “thou shalt not steal.” She’s been set up by someone who wanted her day job… or her Pinterest site. I think you should send someone in to rescue her. I like the twist in this one 😉

  4. That was so creepy, I’m glad it’s sunshine outside! LOL

  5. Huh !! If you don’t know, Lori, then no-one does. He/she/it is still out there in flash fiction land lurking and waiting for next photopath stalk 😦

  6. That’s creepy, indeed. I suppose the professional photopath stalker person was also an amateur hacker?

  7. Ooh, that’s creepy. But I still can’t work out how those pictures came to be on Terry’s phone.

Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. The Admirer – Flash Fiction | Promptly Written

What's on your mind? Let me know!

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Paranormal Hauntings

The Home For all Things Paranormal

Mandela Effect

Where it all started

Poetry & Stories

From soul to soul

PhoebeMD: Health + Inspiration

Poetry • Medicine • Life

Penelope Burns

Write | Blog | Create | Earn

My Serene Words

Seeking Solace in the Horizon & Beyond


It is all about words. Your words are enough to shatter someone's heart. Your words are enough to make a broken heart unbroken. Words have the power to change your life perspectives.

Smiling Coasts

Margaret McDaid

Creation Crazy



An Empyrean Cycle

Touching Madness

"A genius with an idiot's mind" ME

Invest In Yourself First!!

Only We Can Change our Life, No one Else Do it For Us

The Journey of My Left Foot (whilst remembering my son)

I have Malignant Melanoma, my son had Testicular Cancer


The Casual Way to Discuss Movies

%d bloggers like this: