Tag Archives: fiction

Shared Feelings – Flash Fiction

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They’d been working together in silence. A comfortable silence. They each got on with their own work, doing what they had to do with no chatter, no laughter. It certainly wasn’t unusual for them to do so, but it was definitely not the norm to be so quiet, so engrossed in their own work.
“You ok?” he asked, looking up from his desk and breaking the silence.
She glanced up from what she was doing and looked him straight in the eye. Spending a second considering what to say, she took a deep breath;
“I feel stuck” she stated, her voice taking on a tone of realism rather than her usual bright vocals. “I feel like I’m having a quarter life crisis or something. I’m in a state of flux – I don’t like everything about my life, but I don’t know how to fix those bad bits. I don’t know what to do for the best. I just don’t feel like I’m living – barely existing really. I get all these ideas about what I could do, but I’m too lazy to pursue them – too tired! I’ve got no real passion anymore. Nothing that will satisfy my creativity and be an income. I want the money, but without the work. I don’t want this 9 – 5 existence, going home exhausted and only living for the weekend – why is that even a way of life? It’s soul destroying. But it’s the norm, and the easy way out I guess.”
She trailed off; thinking about everything she just released, she turned to him, wondering if she had freaked him out with her verbal unloading.
“I feel exactly the same way” he half-smiled

 

[277 words]

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Mood Ring – Flash Fiction

 

Mood Ring Flash Fiction - Life of Fiction

Her hands were warm, unusually so, and there was something about her smile that made his stomach flip, and not in a good way.

Greeting each other as they usually did, they began walking in the direction of his parents’ house for their first meeting with her, his new girlfriend. It was the first time they would be meeting a girlfriend of his, and though he had been feeling pretty good about it – Jessica was an amazing person – he now felt a sense of unease.

As they walked hand in hand, he was very aware and conscious of the fact that there was something different about her. There were no obvious changes; she still looked the same height; her dirty blonde hair was still long, just touching the curve of her buttocks; even the trio of freckles that graced her neck were still in place; but there was something very very different about her. Something in her being had shifted; something about the way she made him feel. Something was not right.

She had been talking away whilst his mind was trying to figure out what had changed. When she came to a pause, expecting him to make some kind of response to what she had been saying, he simply blurted,

“Who are you? And where’s the real Jessica?”

Stopping in his tracks, he looked agitated and confused. “You are not the person I’ve come to know. You are not my Jessica!” He declared.

She looked into his eyes, and scrunched her mouth to one side, considering her words;

“I am Jessica. It’s just…” she trailed off.

He stood waiting for an answer to his questions, examining her face as the world rushed around them. It was her eyes – there was something different about her eyes.

“I was hoping that I’d ease you into this more gently,” she continued, “in my own time, when our relationship wasn’t still so new”

“Ease me into what?” he shuffled his feet awkwardly, placing his hands in his pockets.

Taking a deep breath, she spoke quietly, with just a hint of hesitation,

“There are things about me that can change… depending on the kind of mood that I am in. It was something I was born with. When people find out, they just think I’m some kinda freak”

He stood there pretending to consider what she had just admitted, trying not to snigger at something that sounded so absurd.

She continued, ‘So right now, I’m feeling nervous. As well as butterflies in my stomach, my hands aren’t their usual cool temperature, and my eyes have probably taken on a yellowy, orange kind of tinge.”

“So… you’re kinda like a mood ring?” he mused

She stared at him, a little unimpressed, before giggling at his suggestion;

“Yes,” she laughed, playfully hitting his chest, “exactly like a mood ring… You do not want to see me when I am angry” she pointed at him in mock warning.

Taking her unusually warm hand in his, he swung their arms as they carried on walking to his parents’ house.

He considered what he had just found out;

“Hey, if I can tell what mood you are in, I’ll know how to make you feel better. Making me the best boyfriend ever!”

 

[543 words]

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Buttons

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It was when a button popped off, straining under the pressure of holding his blue shirt closed, that he realised something needed to be done. That shirt was the largest one he could find in the shop when he’d brought it, only a few months ago.

The thought of going to a specialist clothes shop, always called something ridiculous like ‘Big & Mighty’, to buy even larger sizes scared him into action. He needed to lose the weight, and fast.

He decided to be smart about it, to go to a doctor first and get the right advice. Crash diets just never worked.

At the doctors though, rather than taking his vitals and discussing the best exercises and healthy meal options, or telling him off for being so glutinous, the doctor simply asked about his life and how things were.

Unsure of what this had to do with anything, he thought for a second before attempting to answer.

He hadn’t really thought about himself lately, figured he was kinda stuck on automatic mode so to speak, going through the motions of daily life without really reflecting on it.

“Well”, he spoke hesitantly, “erm, I’ve just been working really. My mom died last year and I haven’t really wanted to do anything else. Just getting on with it.”

“And how do you feel about your mother’s death?” the doctor asked

He stopped to consider this question before bursting into tears. At first they simply streaked down his cheeks but the more he spoke the more they flowed, harder and harder, his face turning the colour of sweet red cherries.

Through heaving sobs he explained how much he missed her, how he was an only child who never knew his father and with no other family to speak of.

He spent the best part of an hour crying his heart out, talking about his feelings of loneliness, emptiness and uncertainty for his future. He shook with emotion.

Eventually he began to settle and calm down, and as the tears started to ease and subside, the doctor asked him to stand in front of the mirror. A little repulsed at the idea of looking at his fat, puffy, tear-stained face, he slowly got up and stepped over to the other side of the room where a full length mirror hung on the wall. He lifted his gaze unwillingly.

However, rather than the red plum of a face he was expecting, he was surprised to see a much slimmer man staring back.

“All of your “fat” was in fact emotional baggage you’ve been harbouring since your mother passed. You’ve been bottling it all up and with no other release, it simply has to go somewhere. Your fat was the physical manifestation of what you were feeling inside.”

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The Mystery of Her

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Day after day, year after year, he had said nothing of his affections. He often thought about doing so, of coming right out with it but he just couldn’t do it. Scared of more rejection, the fear of being even more alone if she spurned him. The one time he did try to tell her he got all flustered and was tripping over his words; he felt like an utter buffoon and came out with something else instead that made him feel completely foolish and left him too self-conscious. It was then he decided that having her as a friend was better than nothing at all, and all though he was completely infatuated with her, he would tell her nothing of his feelings.

They had met at the bookstore, bonded over a love of greek mythology, and since then remained good friends, meeting up a few times a week. She had told him of some on-off boyfriend but other than that she was a mystery to him, a complete enigma. In some ways he thought he knew her but often she would say or do something that made him think he didn’t. Somedays she would be perfectly normal, chatty and friendly, but sometimes she would speak in riddles, avoid answering questions, and always be looking around, almost disinterested.

The chatty friendly version of her became more frequent in their meetings, and whilst he yearned for her to feel the same as he did, he never acted upon his feelings.

One day, he received a phone call from some man. This man was a brother she had never mentioned before who wept down the phone as he told of how she had died in a car accident a few days before. He hung up the phone; not listening to the details of what had happened. He was in shock. He did not want to believe that she was dead.

*****

It took him a long time to bring himself round to visiting her grave. He wanted to do it, say one final goodbye, but it was too hard, too emotional. When he finally convinced himself to go, he stood at her headstone for some time before eventually, with a single tear strolling down his cheek he whispered,

“I love you” his chest heaved and his tears came stronger and harder.

“I love you too” came an emotional voice from behind him.

Slowly turning around, his eyes rested upon her. At the mere sight of her it felt like his heart was going to jump out of his throat.

There she stood, even more beautiful than he remembered. He couldn’t move, stricken with confusion and overwhelming love. The two looked and smiled at each other before he finally strode toward her, full of confidence he had never experienced before, pulled her into his arms, kissed her and held her like he was never going to let go.

“I thought you were dead” he exclaimed through tears of happiness

Nodding, she pulled away from him and took something out of her pocket to show him.

It was an ID card. Underneath the logo of Her Majesty’s Government was a photo of her, next to a name he didn’t recognise.

“Let’s go back to yours,” she suggested, “I’ve got some explaining to do”

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Car Share

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I felt suddenly, that the centre of this man’s attention was a very bad place to be.

The usually flowing conversation stopped dead. The silence that fell was intense. Feeling awkward and intimidated I shuffled in my seat; my heart felt cold and heavy as he directed his gaze at me. I held eye contact for a split second before deciding that looking at the road ahead would be much better. He continued to stare until the lights turned back to green.

In my mind I searched my memories, looking for any hint within our previous encounters that could suggest that the man who kindly drove me home from work every night was actually dangerous. Did I miss any clue?

We’d become friends surely? Across countless car journeys we had developed knowledge of each other, had built what I thought was a close friendship – had I been wrong all this time?

The phrase “a false sense of security” flashed through my mind.

My heartbeat quickened as he drove me towards home; my breath heavy and fists clenched at my seat. We were approaching the shops by my house where he usually dropped me off. I just wanted to be out of the car. This man had changed, or shown his true colours, I don’t know, but I just wanted to get away from him.

He didn’t stop.

He tried to make conversation but there was a sinister element to his talk. I couldn’t speak. I couldn’t react; questions overtook my thoughts;

Could this man really hurt me?

Why did he offer to drive me home in the first place?

Had he planned this all along?

The questions I didn’t really want to find out the answers to.

Why me?

I thought he liked me?

All of my thoughts and opinions about this man constellated at the forefront of my mind… Was he going to hurt me?

Could he really kill me?

 

***

 

I think it is safe to say that I got away with that. No one even suspected a thing.

I had a little bit of guilt, I admit, as I watched her husband of three months on TV making an appeal to anyone who may have any information in regards to her disappearance and whereabouts. He was a nice guy.

And it’s because of him that I had the perfect hiding place for her. Of course the first person they go to in these kind of cases is always the husband, so I had to hold off for a little while, until I was sure the police were satisfied that it wasn’t him. And like I said, he was a good guy, so that didn’t take long.

He wouldn’t even know that lying right there, in the ground beneath his feet, as he worked on re-modelling his rusty red MG Midget, would be his wife. Not even her – the lifeless decaying shell that once housed the spirit and soul of her.

He would never know how close he actually was to her, feeling like she was millions of miles away.

He’d invite me round sometimes, let me do some work on the Harley. I don’t think he noticed my smugness, my satisfaction in knowing the secret I held, the crime I had done. Purposefully dropping my tools on the spot where she lay beneath our feet.

I was so good, almost too good, at playing the sympathy card for him. Reassuring him that she will be found, that whoever did this to her would pay for his crimes; even questioning if she hadn’t just simply ran away.

He’d always ask “are you sure she was ok that night you dropped her off?”

I’d respond with my well-rehearsed lines of “yes, I dropped her by the shops at the top of your road, as always, and continued my journey home. Nothing seemed wrong or weird”

And why would he suspect me? I’d been driving his wife to and from work for longer than they were married. I was the all-round good guy who would never do such a thing as choke the life out of the very person I would call a friend!

 

 

 

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