Creative Writing, Flash Fiction

Baby on Board

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This is a District Line train to Upminster. The next station is Gloucester Road. It was lightly air conditioned and artificially bright. It was early but not rush hour early, a little later than that perhaps. Only a few people stood but every seat was filled, so she stood there with her long, wiry, white hair wisping around her golden-bronze face. She was bent over a little reaching and shaking. It was as though it were winter and she’d forgotten to wear a coat. Most noticeable was her head which was bobbing up-down side-to-side involuntarily. Her lips were thin and cracked and very pink with a brown outline. Pocahontas!

Her hands struggled to find the green pole as the doors closed and the train jilted to commence the journey. She stumbled forward but did not fall. She had grabbed the pole for safety. Eyes were on her from all over and from above. Everyone watched the show of the hundred year old Pocahontas.

I looked away from her to scan my surroundings again. Eyes flitting between the show and the cats. Between the show and the makeup mirrors. Between the show and the Kindles. Everyone hoping that she might not fall, God forbid they delay this train for her sake, but all the same, noone willing to give up their seat.

The next station is Sloane Square. The train stopped. She went chest first into the pole. Someone gasped from the far end of the carriage. The seat behind her became free as a young man got up at the last minute and ran off the train. But before she could notice, for she was soothing her bruise with gentle strokes from her aged brown fingers, another young man jumped in the seat. He quite literally jumped. He had been inches away from her ever since South Kensington, holding onto the same pole she struggled with, never thinking to give her a hand. Thoughtless.

The girl opposite me saw it as well. She tutted, and when I turned to look at her tutting self, she pulled an ugly face as if to say what a shameful thing that was to do. I glared at her, stood up and pulled my whale of an ass over people’s feet to the old Pocahontas. It’s been too long.

“Hi,” I said to her in the softest voice I could conjure up. I was fuming. A single drop of warm water fell from my tear duct and crashed into my hand. I wiped it away. She pulled her arms around the green pole, holding on for dear life as she turned towards me. My legs, as wide as I had positioned them, could no longer support us so I was grabbing for the pole too.
“Hello,” she said to me with a croaky voice.
“Take my seat, please.” I said to her turning to point at the ash-white girl with pink lips sitting prim and proper with her A-line midi covering her knees and her breast bulging up out of the corset she wore with it. She was smiling and fiddling with her almost invisible necklace.

I don’t know where she came from, or how she got to my seat so quickly but I would get her out!

“YOU…” I began, addressing every dumb, ignorant and selfish ear that could hear me. Everyone who was not pregnant, disabled or elderly.

The old Pocahontas rested her paw upon my shoulder. “Don’t worry about it my dear,” she said, “leave them be. They’re not so bad, just preoccupied.” she said. I spun around to look at her again and held the rest of my disgust in my mouth. Once I had swallowed it down again, I felt faint. I pressed my hand into my back and then the train pushed my baby into the pole. Still, noone stood for the old Pocahontas or for me, the child bearing whale. Although her age was well etched into her face and my bulge was bouncing around and bruising, it was not enough for them.

The next station is Victoria, please change here for the Victoria Line, national rail services and Victoria coach station.I found that Pocahontas and I had the same stop. We made it on our feet until Victoria. Although we shouldn’t have. As she stood beside me and we stepped off the train onto the platform, I flooded both of our feet and crashed into my knees. She slipped on my waters and fell to her end in a moment.

It is true what they say. As one life comes into this world, one must go.

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Creative Writing, Flash Fiction

Deuces

The string of 24 tiny light bulbs shook left and right and then left again. It had been doing this for hours but it was noticeable now because the lights had been turned on. A special request from the pair that sat under it. Pellets of rain battered the table top and bounced off into the mist of the incoming rain, rain that was being whipped around in the cold hard breath of nature.

She sat forward, on the edge of the bench, leaning over the table into him. He mirrored her, although he couldn’t lean too much, the bench on his side was loose and he was heavy. He held her wrists with a tight grip. She didn’t mind because she was used to it. He whispered something into her ear. She barely heard him over the waves of rain, but she heard enough. She flung her head back, her red lips parted as far as they could be and a jazz voice offered up some joy against the melencholy morning.

It was still dark, eclipse, they said it was. Her laughter called the attention of the staff inside the Sandria Coffee Shop. Then those who’d paid their custom that morning, and others who were around for the sake of temporary shelter, turned their attention to the two sitting outside.

The bench and table were damp and the two out on it were constantly wiping their foreheads and chins with various wet items. They squinted alot and raised their hands a lot, as if they were blocking the sun out of their eyes, which is bizarre because there was no sun – but they were having a perfectly normal conversation and enjoying it.

The onlookers, the in-lookers were victims of the thing some refer to as pathetic fallacy.  Too right it’s pathetic. They were victims not because of the torrential downpour but because they weren’t able to find a way to enjoy it. The common denominator was the inner rebuke shared by all of those inside. They were stuck.

They made phone calls explaining latenesses, and they sat a sulked otherwise, looking onwards out. Insanity maybe? Hippies maybe? Dying maybe? Thoughts flitted across the minds preoccupied with frustration. Why on earth are they out in the cold, in the dark, in the rain? What on earth is the meaning of all this rain lately? Rain! Rain.

The laughter had resided, but eyes were still attempting to focus on the silouettes beyond the misted glass walls.

She stood up for a second. She lit her cigarette and climbed over the bench. She said something that was hardly audible from the inside. I love this. I love him. Something like that, something about love. She moved slowly, breathing in the nicotine. She sat down next to him, the bench rocked. She was facing the shop, she was facing the envy. Then she spun around 180 degrees on her gluteus maximus and was side by side with her companion.

The eyes began to tear away from the silouettes, two backs weren’t so interesting. They’d turned their backs on the envy and on the pathetic pathetic phallacy. He had told her a little about his evening on Friday. It involved a  video about a pathetic orange cat, and they just both had to watch it.  If she didn’t laugh he’d leave. She didn’t care and told him to show her.

She laughed, well she giggled and not because it was funny but because the cat looked like Ed Sheeran. He stayed.

She took his phone and asked him if he had pinterest, he said no and she said he sucked. But she found the absolutely hilarious picture she wanted him to laugh at with her. Thanks Google. A dolls head attached to a chicken carcass. She was elated and couldn’t stop. He said its not funny, it’s sick.

“You’re crazy,” he said and snatched his phone back. “It’s good to be crazy,” she said. She grabbed his wrists and squeezed.

“I have to leave now,” she said, “because you didn’t laugh.” She stubbed out her cigarette on the dampened table top, shot up, hopped over the bench, grabbed his skate board and ran. “Deuces!”

He flung his legs over the bench, wiped his brow with a wet napkin and ran too.
It was fun because they had only just met that morning, and now anything could happen.

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Creative Writing, Flash Fiction

Bedroom Mess

She liked having a tidied bedroom because it compensated for her untidied mind. When she came around from a night of violent passion and naked limbs, she woke him up and told him to leave.

She pressed her bruised thigh and sighed as he got up. She threw a bloodstained white shirt at his face.

She breathed slow and imagined a tidy room. It settled her. She took a shot. She began to pick up and put away and sweep and tie and throw out all of yesterday’s memories. He’d left and she was alone, in the midst of her thoughts.

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Creative Writing, Flash Fiction

Love – take it back

She pleaded with it, sought it for all that she believed it was. Love, she called it as she pleaded it would once again take back the spotlight. Don’t fade into the background, be profound again.

She’d not had much luck staying focused and she was easily numbed. But she didn’t believe it was luck that freed her to feel everything. She believed it was a law, a force an energy. Love, she called it.

She said it was what made her. It was the thing that made her her and she knew that she wouldn’t be able to go on in life without it. So she sought right down into the depths.

The thing is, she didn’t realise that with every breath she had exactly what she was looking for, but because she set her gaze beyond this she lost it.

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Creative Writing, Flash Fiction, The Fine Line

Greeting

“Hi, back here hey. How was your weekend?” he said.

I smiled. I stared a little at his plump lips smiling back at me. I grabbed his extended hand. My right hand flat against his palm while my left clasped his wrist. As I ran my fingers through the hairs on his forearm he pulled me to him.

We were in a dance. Swiftly yet graciously our greeting stance had become undone.
On my right, his left he laced his finger with mine, simultaneously unclasping my hand from his wrist, slidding his hand down my palm and along my arm. My shoulders bore the beautiful burden of an embrace. I could feel my heart pounding in his chest. I stared into his eyes as he reached down. His beautiful face drawing nearer and nearer to mine. His breaths dusting my face like a summer wind. He was a master in the intimate embrace.

I was excited by him so my pulsing body was tense. I swallowed and he heard and he turned that pout into a smile. He drew his face back, away. I remembered to breathe. ‘Don’t go away’. He thrust his face foward again and his neck rested in the crescent of mine. His warmth, my warmth – we were two whole beings whose embrace had made us one. Love. There was nothing between us.

“Hi,” I said, “yep we’re back here. I had an okay weekend. The in laws were over. Ha. What about you?”

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Creative Writing, Flash Fiction

Happy Birthday

Dear ex lover,

I just remembred it was your birthday and thought I’d drop a quick message.

I hope you are well and I hope you are happy now, because I am. I am so happy. It’s been two years since we last spoke (you know, besides the Christmas message I left for you a few months back. Did you get that?) and it’s been four years since we last dated.

I just want to thank you for everything,  the fun times and the hard times, and that time when you held my hand when I found out my real father was dead and  it was my stepfather who had raised me. I mean we went through a lot together. But most of all I want to thank you for leaving me like you did.

I was beaten down and heart broken, I was in a mental ICU and it seemed as though all my nurses had died. I couldn’t believe how much of myself I gifted to you, and when you left and didn’t give me me back I was a little bit lost. A lot lost.

But like I said I am happy now, I have moved on. I put myself through uni, and I am moving to LA to do some modelling.  I have an amazing boyfriend, who is thinking about proposing to me – but my move has postponed all of that for a little while. So I thank you because if you hadn’t left me like you did I would have never ever progressed.

I think about you sometimes, enough to almost call you but not so much that I actually hit send. I am glad we ended on good terms, it helped with the consolation and so I know everything between us is okay. Anyway, I’m rambling. ..

Now. Your new girlfriend is pretty, how old is she? Is she a Capricorn like me? I remember you always said your soulmate would be a Capricorn. And I love that she’s a flight attendant (yep, I admit I stalked her page a tiny bit). How’s the distance thing going?

I really hope it is working well. That’s what tore us apart. I was fine with it, I waited for you to come home on holidays and some weekends. I was fine with you being away. It was only a few years. I still don’t know why you thought that I needed more. I don’t understand.

Ah, rambling again…

Anyway, happy birthday.

C x

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Creative Writing, Flash Fiction, The Fine Line

Confession

The moment I allowed myself to perceive the image of him was an incident I have very little to say about. Words fail me. The essence of that one tiny act seems but a mustard seed. And that is all there is to it.

I was like small child, in a white dress, who had found a trinket. It had colours like lavender, and when the sun shone on it one might have seen glimpses of mauve, aubergine and crimson. Beautiful it was, but minature. I put it in my pocket, told no one about it and forgot. I woke one day to find that this trinket, inside my pocket, had been put in the wash. Swimming though and though the waves and bubbles contaminating everything.

It was a disaster when my modest family came to find that all their whites where now purple.  There was really no telling.

It was best not to say anything for a number of reasons. For honesty’s sake the truth could be told  in some months when everyone’s hearts were restored. But, perhaps maybe, I shall make my confession now.

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