Not Exactly Time Travel

clockIt happened when he was sixteen. He was a few days off seventeen, not that meant anything now. They just…stopped.

Every person.

Every animal.

The sea froze mid-motion and the day never became night. He remembered crying out for several hours as he had run from his house screaming for someone, anyone to tell him why his mother wasn’t moving.

He’d cried a lot in those first few weeks. Especially when his seventeenth birthday still came around. He had moved his mother and sister into the living room, not that it mattered, there was no TV to watch, the electricity no longer worked.

He no longer needed to eat. He no longer felt hungry nor thirsty. It was like he had frozen as well. But he was not frozen, as the years waned with no days to count his hair greyed and his skin wrinkled. He had been everywhere in that time, he had walked across oceans and stayed in golden palaces. Though he soon realised what was the point of being the riches man in the world when no one was to see him in his throne.

He lost use of his voice and memories of movement became whispers. He wondered if he had just imagined it.

He returned home to die. He couldn’t remember which had been his house, nor even what his parents had looked like. All of it was gone. But it was still a sunny midday here.

Now old and frail he could no longer move. He remembered long ago, stories about people being eaten alive by wolves and bears. But there was no longer animals to eat him alive, he would not starve, only rot into dust. Perhaps then the world would start revolving again. Just this time without him.

Advertisements

Burning at Dawn

The sounds he made were disgusting even to his own ears. But he couldn’t help himself, the taste was too much. The blood dripped down the man’s side and his tongue chased after it, his claws ripping in deeper into the flesh, holding down the prey as if the man was still moving. He was definitely breathing, his pounding heart bringing fresh warm blood to the vampire’s mouth.

HighwaySuddenly the trees exploded in red and pink. He tore himself away so quickly, a little bit of flesh came up with his teeth. The sun was blooming far off in the horizon. If he still he needed to breathe, it would be getting stuck in his throat.

Terror wasn’t an emotion he was used to, surprisingly there wasn’t much that could scare the undead, not many people carried stakes nowadays. But the sun and its rays of pure light was an ever-present danger.

He stood, letting the half-dead man roll over. He couldn’t care about that right now. He’d chased his game over several acres of farmland, with no shelter in sight. He started to back away. Was he really going to try and outrun the Sun? Looking over his shoulder at the rolling hills he realised yes, yes, he was.

***

No one could work out what had happened. The bodies were far away from each other, though it seemed like the biggest coincidence of the century for them not to be connected. The first man looked like he’d been torn apart by a savage animal and quite a big one at that, which was unlikely in the middle of Coventry. The other…well the other was the real mystery. Spontaneous combustion they called it. And it was apparently a thing. But usually the victim wouldn’t know it was happening until it was too late. And if that was the case, why had the nearby residents heard screams and sobs as he had ran through the fields.

You Only Had to Ask

This Flash Fiction was inspired by Rachel Poli’s Writing Prompt

***

“I thought we agreed no more secrets.”

Michal’s words echoed. The tall sunlit archways of the stone corridor should have made it impossible for such a thing. But in the aching silence left when Evan’s sword had sliced through his chest, the words rang around them.

Michal was looking down at the sword that he was impaled on with raised eyebrows only mildly shocked at the betrayal. Outwardly, he didn’t seem to be affected by it at all, still standing and talking as if going about their normal duties. Yet Evan’s arms were beginning to shake on the sword’s handle as Michal’s legs had given out. Only his old friend’s blade kept him standing.

“If you wanted to kill me, you only had to ask.”

Evan laughed, but it caught in his throat making it sound more like a sob. He’d never cried over any of the people he’d killed. He wished it could have stayed that way. Michal always brought out the worst in him but he supposed that was because Michal was the best out of all of them. Even as Evan murdered him, Michal was only upset that he hadn’t told him of his impending doom prior to that moment.

Evan couldn’t hold him up any longer and wrench the sword from Michal’s chest, the sword grating against the hard gristle that it had pierced. Michal was brought into his arms with the force of the action and Evan held him up even then, with his own legs trembling beneath the dead weight. Blood was not an unusual sight to the old soldier but the feeling of the hot thick blood, seeping through his clothes and soaking his chest filled him with shock and fear. As if he hadn’t realised what his actions would cause. Like Michal would walk away from it, like they both always did.

“Orders,” was all he could say, his guilt threatening to close his windpipe. He’d let it, to pay for what he’d done.

And so he held his breath waiting as Michal’s arms fell limp and his voice grew softer, all the while he kept repeating, “you only had to ask. You only had to ask.”

Unemployed and Bored

If she thought about it, this was like a game, potion making if you will. The constant boil and cooling, making sure everything was at the perfect temperature so it was just right. And with the smell coming from the bubbling pots and pans she could understand why many called cooking an art.

But if she didn’t think about it she realised how shit this was. Four pots covered her stove not to mention the bowl and stacks of jam jars that covered every surface of the kitchen and disgusting gloop seemed to follow them wherever they were sticking to her lovely clean worktops and somehow her ceiling.

Oh well it would give her something to do tomorrow.

She stepped back from the steaming concoction she was making and huffed as if she had been running. Her forehead was certainly sweating, perhaps this was a workout. Though, she was sure there was so much evaporated sugar in the air that it would give her diabetes.

She sighed, there was no turning back now. She wiped her forehead and felt cold jelly stick to it. Shit.

The door opened and shut.

“Honey I’m – oh…”

“Hey dear.”

Dan surveyed the kitchen while she refused to look back.

“So,” he said slowly, “did we have too many strawberries?”

“Yep, and apples and gooseberries.”

“I’m not even sure I know what a gooseberry is.”

She tittered, stirring one of her pots again as Dan backed out.

“You need to get a job!” he called out as he ran up the stairs.

“Are you hiring?” she called back.

Strawberries

The Flash Fiction

So, I need to write another Flash Fiction. Oh dearie, dearie. I do wonder if I’ll run out of ideas: about witty people living peculiar lives or my horrors will lose their edge. Did they ever have one?

Enough that. Time to write.

But what to write about? It has to be something that can keep a reader’s attention, be that by being snappy or funny. And about who? Perhaps a slice of a complicated life that will never be touched again.

Do you ever think about all the stories that you leave unfinished? Those lives put solely in your hands that you forget about so carelessly.

Of course, they mean nothing. They are but words on a page.

Jar

But perhaps that is what I am. Thoughts on a page and a narrator for a story that has an ultimate ending. But as long as I’m thinking, as long as I’m still a running idea and a story worth writing I’m alive. Because I can’t die, I don’t want to die. Does anyone?

So, I beg of you.

Don’t stop reading.

 

The End Xx

The Most Adorable Stray

cat

It was the most adorable stray. It had been scratched across its back, so its fur was patchy and matted. Its fur was a dirty shade of brown, almost yellow and was a skinny thing.

Tibbles, she christened him.

“Here Tibbles,” she said squeaking softly. The cat hissed and took a swipe at her from under the car.

“Woah!” she shuffled backwards nearly falling over.

She was crouched on someone else’s drive where Tibbles had hidden away. She smirked knowing what was about to happen.

“Okay, I’ll go.” She got up, making a show of walking away as if the cat could see.

“Meow, meow, meow,” came the pathetic cry from behind her.

Everyday they went through this, with Tibbles running behind until Sarah tried to pick him up he’d hiss and run away.

“Ah and our time is up,” she called out as she reached her house. Tibbles hopped onto her fence, streaming through the posts.

“Mew!” He became whinier whenever she left. However today when she opened her front door Tibbles cried again and tried to follow her through.

“No, no!” her actions were instant and without thought as she pushed the cat back outside.

He meowed pitifully as the door was shut on him.

She felt awful. Tibbles was quaint and needed someone to feed him. And he had chosen her. And in a cat’s world that was the biggest compliment. The feeling grew worse as the heavens opened up and rained streamed down her windows.

He was the most adorable stray.

Her mind made up, the next day, she armed herself with a net and a packet of ham.

“Here Tibbles-Tibbles. Here Tibbles-Tibbles,” she called up and down the road.

Nothing.

She walked once down the street and then up, but Tibbles was nowhere to be seen. Down trodden, she returned home.

Through her front windows she could see all the way through to her kitchen. Where, on the dining table, Tibbles sat as if saying, ‘what took you so long?’

He was the most adorable pet.

The Speech

The speech shook in his hands.

“Does it have to be me?”

“You’re the Prime Minster.”

He scoffed and looked back down. Every word seemed to be wrong. Though how could any of the words be right when he was telling his country they were at war. It shook again in his hands.

One of his advisors scoffed, “you’re scared of giving a speech, imagine all those boys you’re about to send to war.”

He couldn’t decide whether he wanted to snap back or throw up. But he wasn’t given enough time as the door flung open and blinding light, cries and shouts reigned over him.

Not Going Out

“Hey, I was thinking of going out drinking with the gals. You free?”

She looked to her thick blankets and fluffed up pillow waiting with her woolly pyjamas.

“Afraid not…my sister has just died and I’m still processing it.”

Bed

Art of Small Talk

“Why are you so obsessed with the weather?”

George huffed and fiddled with the newspaper across his lap. Sam had finally agreed to come on holiday. Actually, Sam had agreed for the first time since he had moved in, to go outside.

Sam looked normal. That was all George could say with certainty. He looked like the most generic human out there, and to different people, that could mean different things. He could appear as a kindly old lady or a beret wearing hipster. Sam to George had looked like a red-haired and freckled boy when they first met, sixty years ago. He had kept his red features through their lives, though he had jumped in age and height as George had grown up.

Because Sam wasn’t human. He didn’t really know what Sam was. When Sam had first tried to explain what he was George had assumed that when he said ‘I’m not human’ he had been referring to his homosexuality. That night had involved George hugging him tightly while Sam fumbled through explanations that never went anywhere. After that Sam seemed too embarrassed to try and talk about it again and their lives continued with the knowledge sometimes, Sam ate plastic and random strangers would think they knew him. It was why he preferred to be inside with George, Sam didn’t have to hide in front of him. But the holiday was for George and they, (or maybe just George), weren’t getting any younger.

“People are not obsessed with the weather its just…a conversation starter. You know, everyone knows what the weather is…most of the time.”

Sam slapped George’s thigh.

“Did we ever talk about the weather?”

“No, but we were children, that’s different. Its…small talk.”

“I thought that was whispering.”

“No, no, its what conversation starters are called, asking about the weather or current world events.”

“Ah.” Sam stared across the pool. “LOVELY WEATHER WE’RE HAVING.”

The woman in the deck chair across from them jumped, though George found it surprisingly unsurprising.

“No,” he said quietly, “that’s…not quite right.”

“Why not?”

“Well, you usually ask people who are close by, also you don’t normally ask about the weather…inside.”

“Well what else do you talk about if not the weather. You know I have no idea about the news.”

George sighed and stood up ready to swim.

“Well you usually talk about stuff you have in common. Now,” he kissed Sam’s forehead, “don’t get into trouble.”

He dived in and did about two lengths before there was a loud scream and a splash. A woman was now flailing fully-clothed in the pool. He swam over as fast as he could.

“Are you alright?” he said, hooking his arms under hers.

The spluttering woman gladly accepted his help as he swam her to the edge of the pool. But his heart sunk as he realised Sam was crouched where the woman had fallen in.

‘Pushed,’ he corrected himself, ‘pushed.’

“You and my husband are both soaked in water, how do you feel about that?”

George definitely deserved a spa weekend alone.

Beach