Laced

Simon lowered his head, hunched his broad shoulders, and stepped up through the back of the tuk-tuk.  For many years, he dreamed and saved for this trip.  His camera swung around his neck as he duck-walked down the center aisle.  A young woman reached out to steady him.  His grin matched her radiant smile when she offered him a piece of candy.  He relished the cherry flavor.

Lying face down in a ditch, the grass tickled his nose.

How did I get here?

Where is my camera, my passport, my wallet?

The sour taste of cherry lingered on his tongue.

~~

The story is based on a true one.  Several years ago, there was a group of thieves who slipped tourists candy laced with a drug that knocked them out and caused them to forget.  I remember it well because my grown son was traveling around Asia at the time.  After reading a news article, I sent him a “don’t take candy from strangers” email!  =)

This is my contribution to “Friday Fictioneers,” a weekly challenge hosted by the lovely Rochelle Wisoff Fields. With the help of a photo prompt to inspire, we’re to write a 100-word story. The photo this week was taken by Fatima Fakier Deria.

If you would like to join in with this encouraging group of writers or read their stories from this week, visit HERE.

41 Comments Add yours

  1. Iain Kelly says:

    Never take candy from strangers…especially when on holiday in a foreign country!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It’s best to stay alert! =)

      Liked by 1 person

  2. neilmacdon says:

    The perils of travel

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Always pros and cons to anything! =)

      Like

  3. Dale says:

    The fact this is true makes it all the more wild. Such an innocent, friendly gesture. Not. What a sad world we live in.
    Well done, Brenda.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s what freaked me out. Such a simple and nice gesture, offering someone a piece of candy. A reminder to stay alert when you travel, unfortunately. Thanks, Dale!! =)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Dale says:

        Bloody hell… Sad…

        Like

  4. Sad story, Brenda, especially as it’s based on real life. Tourists often behave as if they’re invincible and that’s when they’re at their most vulnerable. I learnt very early in my travels the need to be vigilant at all times.

    Susan A Eames at
    Travel, Fiction and Photos

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, it’s good to stay vigilant. As a tourist we can be a target anywhere we travel. As a long-time traveler, I’ve been robbed a time or two and in the least expected places. Thanks for commenting. =)

      Like

  5. draliman says:

    Wasn’t he ever told not to take sweets from strangers? A nasty thing to do to people, though better than beating them half to death, I suppose.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Good point, they came up with a gentle way to rob. Oy!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. plaridel says:

    while in a foreign country, we must always be on guard when dealing with folks who act too friendly. oftentimes, they have a hidden agenda.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Sadly, this is the case. I’ve been duped once or twice. Thanks for commenting! =)

      Liked by 1 person

  7. msjadeli says:

    At least he came away with his life, which is more than some do…

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is true. He can always get another passport. Thanks for reading and commenting. =)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. msjadeli says:

        You’re very welcome, Brenda.

        Liked by 1 person

  8. ceayr says:

    Cautionary tale, Brenda, although this could just as easily happen at home.
    Sad world

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Unfortunately so. Thanks for commenting!

      Like

  9. pennygadd51 says:

    Yes, well I can imagine falling for that scam. Oh dear.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Me too and I worried my son would as well. The target for this specific group of thieves was young male tourists. Thanks so much for reading and commenting, Penny.

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Oh dear, poor Simon, trusting and unsuspecting. Guess a degree of caution is needed whenever you travel.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is certainly true, a degree of caution is always necessary, anywhere we are. Thank you so much for commenting! =)

      Like

  11. Dear Brenda,

    My husband was slipped a mickey overseas back in his Navy days as a youngster. The repetition of the cherry taste is very effective. Well done.

    Shalom,

    Rochelle

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m so so sorry that happened to your husband. What a terrible thing. Thank you for your kind comment on the writing of the story, Rochelle. Hope you have a nice weekend! =)

      Liked by 1 person

  12. Russell says:

    That’s a cautionary tale for sure, and well told to boot!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much, Russell, for your kind comment! =)

      Liked by 1 person

  13. Ann Coleman says:

    I remember when “don’t take candy from strangers” was advice we gave our children. Who knew it would be equally important to tell adults that? And I don’t blame you for being concerned about your son….I would have warned him too!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The main target for this group was young male tourists plus I’m a “worry wart” when it comes to my “kids.” You never stop being a parent and they never stop being your kids. =) Thanks so much for stopping. It always brightens my day!

      Liked by 1 person

  14. Tannille says:

    I remember in the 80s at school as part of a stranger danger campaign we were taught never to take lollies from a stranger. I guess not everyone got the memo. A great story. Did he check his kidneys 😀?

    Like

    1. I’m sure that was his next move, check for what’s missing. I’m glad you enjoyed the story. I remember the “stranger danger” campaign though my kids went to school and grew up in Asia. It is a pretty sensible policy though. =)

      Liked by 1 person

  15. It started out so well, I certainly wasn’t expecting an ending such as that. That could so easily happen to any of us who travel to faraway places.

    Like

    1. So true! I’m a little naive even though I’ve traveled (lived overseas) most of my adult life. Thank you so much for stopping by, Keith!!

      Liked by 1 person

  16. Sandra says:

    It happens just about everywhere, I guess. Random acts of kindness are only rarely that. Nicely done.

    Like

    1. Thanks so much, Sandra. =) It’s true, situations like these do occur anywhere and we need to stay situationally aware, especially when we travel.

      Like

  17. granonine says:

    Sweet little old lady with a poisonous mind. You can’t even trust Grandma these days.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You do have to be careful, that’s for sure. Thank you for commenting, Linda. =)

      Liked by 1 person

  18. magarisa says:

    That sweet smile was not innocent at all. Sad and scary!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It certainly wasn’t innocent. Thank you for commenting! =)

      Liked by 1 person

      1. magarisa says:

        You’re welcome!

        Like

  19. Laurie Bell says:

    Oooo now that’s a scary outcome! Never take candy from a stranger I agree

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks so much for stopping by, Laurie! =)

      Like

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