Hopeful Rest (Part 1)

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Some days, I just mindless walk whilst listening to music. It’s a habit that comes from when I was a teenager and just had to get away from my family. I was so anger and upset all the time back then and I couldn’t talk properly to anyone about it because I didn’t know how to. Being autistic didn’t help either.

It still doesn’t, but at least things have become a little easier. I like my job as an IT assistant at a large office. People come to me with their PC problems and I fix it. Though the world still has a habit of getting on top of me.

I was wandering to cool off after a bad day at work, listening to classic Linkin Park albums on my phone when I came across the old stone gate and fence. I stopped and checked for any signs telling me not to trespass etc, it’s important to pay attention to those things. There didn’t seem to be any and now I had stopped, I realised I wasn’t sure where I was.

Around me, thick trees and bushes blocked out most of the light. The path I was on was overgrown and it seemed nothing had been here recently. I was far from any road or house, in the middle of the moors. There had been something man-made here once and nature had claimed it back.

Getting lost had never scared me, my autistic brain didn’t really understand emotions or feelings. I get them sure, but not on the same level as everyone else. Also, if you wanted to be away from people you had to get lost sometimes.

I went through the gap were a wooden gate once had been and found myself on a fading path heading upwards. There were piles of stones dotted around, all of which had fallen off the wall. Past the trees lay an open, tangled snarl of a clearing and popping up from the super long grass and trails of ivy were headstones.

Counting them slowly, I came to about thirty in total, though there was probably more hidden in the grass. So, a graveyard then. I couldn’t see a church poking above the treeline, maybe if there’d been one it was long since gone. I didn’t give much other thought to the hows and the whys. I liked burial places, they were often quiet and didn’t have that many living people about.

I walked to the first row of headstones and tried to read them. Weather, age and moss made it difficult. I traced some letters and numbers with my fingers and got a few of them. I tried to clear the stone, interested to see the date on it. 1879 seemed to be it. The last line on the stone was clear to read, as if someone had gone to great lengths to make it stand out; We hope they have gone to rest.

I moved on to the next which like the first was a plain arched shape. The inscription once again was faded but at the end were those same words again. I went down the row, looking at each headstone carefully, but they were all too hard to read expect for that repeating last line.

There was an odd sound to those words my brain realised. I had seen many epitaphs but that was just different. Who was ‘we’ ? The family? and why ‘hope’ for something that was true? I don’t really get why people do things sometimes.

I walked around the other gravestones. Some of them were clearer then others and I got the sense this resting place was for members of a small village that might now be lost to history. The earliest date I found was mid 1800’s and the most recent 1930’s close to the start of the Second World War. On all of them though were the same last words; We hope they have gone to rest.

To Be Continued…

New Dawn #WeeklyWritingPrompt

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The road felt sharp under my bare feet. Ahead, all I could see was rolling mist and the outline of trees. I didn’t know where I was and there were no signs to guide me. There was only one thought in my head; keep running. Though, I had long ago stopped moving quickly as tiredness had set heavily in.

I should have tried to look for clues early on to figure out where they had taken me. My head though had been in a blind panic and there was only blurs of colour and patchy memories for me to reflect upon now. They had held me captive for so long, I wasn’t sure what the day or year was.

My mind shifted gears as the light around me changed. The mist seemed to lift and I stopped in wonder. Morning had arrived and was chasing the night away. I turned my face to the rising sun, embracing it with everything I had left.

Today was my new dawn.

 

(Inspired from; https://secretkeeper.net/2018/03/19/weekly-writing-prompt-133/ with thanks).

A-Z Challenge 2018

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Hi everyone,

It’s almost that time of year again for the A-Z blogging challenge! I’ve been thinking over the last few weeks that I need to keep an eye out for it and start planning what I’m going to do this year. Well, today is sign up and theme reveal day! I’ve just done that so here’s the link if you want to check it out; http://www.a-to-zchallenge.com

I’ve decided that due to have so much fun with it last year that once again I’m going to put together a list of words and their meanings that are new to me and I feel inspired by. I’ll then center a short story around each of the words and post ever day as I would normally do. These words can come from anywhere and I’ll be using Pinterest and the ‘word’ board I’ve on there to help me gather and select the words.

Also, like last year, some of the short stories will have a part 2 on a Sundays which are none writing days for the challenge but I’ll still be going!

Here’s a link to my previous years undertaking of the challenge; https://thestoryfiles.wordpress.com/category/a-z-challenge/

I’m looking forward to seeing what short stories I can create and also how other bloggers are taking part.

Thanks for all your support and happen readings!

Hayley.

 

The Mummies #SundayPhotoFiction

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I shouldn’t have been so shocked to find Egyptian mummies in my great-grandparents’ house but it was disturbing as they were the bodies of two toddlers and a possible still born baby. The two cats and bird I had found earlier, I didn’t mind so much, especially as I remembered them from childhood. Human reminds were just different.

All three mummies were wrapped safely in a wooden packing box that had faded foreign travel information on. I knew my great-grandparents had lived in Egypt for a few years, that was were they had met and began sharing their love of ancient history together. Over the years, they had amassed a huge collection of historical items.

Despite my gut instinct, I had to open the sarcophagi to know what was inside of them. All three had still wrapped bodies in them. The badges had yellowed, cracked with age and a musty dry smell like that of an old book wafted out. I closed the lids quickly and put them all back into the wooden crate. Then labeled what they were and that they should be donated to a museum.

 

(Inspired by; https://sundayphotofictioner.wordpress.com/2018/03/18/sunday-photo-fiction-march-18th-2018/ with thanks).

Age #TaleWeaver

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Sometimes it was just nice to sit down in silence and think. The park at sunrise was my place to go and do that. Nearly everyone was still in bed and there weren’t many cars on the roads. My favorite bench was at the far side of the small lake, further in then all the other resting spots. It give a great view though and if joggers, dog walkers and early starter workers were around I wouldn’t see any of them.

Age was getting to me though and it was a struggle to rise at four or five in the morning. Let alone hobble all that way! Getting the bus was easier, but sometimes I didn’t make it in time to see the sun began to rise. I tried not to let it get to me, the same way one might an illness or an argument. Like a circle though, it keep coming back around.

You don’t really think about mortally when you are young. You believe you are immortal and your life is too busy to stop and ponder deep questions like that. Though death is close at hand for us. He doesn’t care what you are doing when he sees your number is up and it’s time for him to come to take you.

Death is a friend of mine. That seems strange to say but he’s taken my three wives, two sons, my oldest brother and sister, my parents and grandparents too. He’s been apart of my life since I was born. I’m not afraid and I’ve always known I wasn’t going to live forever. That realisation helps as you age and you are just waiting out the days.

I’m following in my dad’s footsteps once again. We all do that you know. As young people we say no! I won’t become like my parents, I’ll be better or even worse if that’s what it takes. But then, we slowly become like them. Little habits they have, become our own. Voices that sound like them in moments of anger or sadness. We phrase from ourselves to them and back again, another circle that can’t be broken.

The sun rises and I feel the warmth on my dry, wrinkled skin. I wonder if there’s anything beyond this life. I’m not sure I want there to be. One life has been enough for me. I’ve said my peace and that’s all.

(Inspired by; https://mindlovemiserysmenagerie.wordpress.com/2018/03/15/tale-weaver-163-aging-15th-march/ with thanks).

Puffins #3LineTales

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The sea roared in my ears, the tide was coming back in. I lent out over the edge of the cliff, camera ready to snap whatever was down there. I took a few photos blindly then the puffins flew up into my face, defending their nests and forcing me away.

(Inspired by; https://only100words.xyz/2018/03/15/three-line-tales-week-111/ with thanks).

Stargazing #Friday Fictioneers

Friday night and I was stood outside looking up at the sky. Most people were out drinking, partying or at home chilling but here was I, shivering in my coat, trying to get a good look at the stars. It was a dream, turned hobby, turned job and I was so lucky to be here right now. Only tonight, the constellations weren’t playing. There was too much cloud cover for a good enough footage. The weather forecast hadn’t been wrong about more snow a coming. I signed, there was always tomorrow night to try again with.

(Inspired by; https://rochellewisoff.com/2018/03/14/16-march-2018/ with thanks).

Ahead #Writephoto

Sitting down on a rickety bench, I admired the view from atop the little hill we had climbed.  It was a good enough day for a walk; sunny but not too warm or bright, there was a gently breeze and Spring was busting awake in the air. The countryside rolled out below me, seeming to shake off a grey winter’s blanket to start popping with colour once again.

I breathed in the sweet, flower fragrance air and thought about how much I’d just missed this. I raised my hands and put them up to the breeze, feeling that invisible and freeing force. Lowing them, my coat and long t-shirt sleeves rolled down and I caught sight of the fresh looking, raw scar along my right arm. It went from my wrist to my elbow, were they had to put pins in to help heal the bone right.

I can’t bare to touch it and before the memories had time to build again, I looked out over the countryside. I could see some sheep in the distance like little puffs of clouds, there were a few trees just getting their green leaves back and down in that twist of valley, a river was meandering through like it had been for hundreds of years. Birds were twitting and singing passionately, though I couldn’t see them. There was all this natural blue and green everywhere.

Was this Eden?

A few shaky breaths came out of me then I noticed my arm was shaking. I drew my sleeves back down, hiding the messed up skin. Hugging my arm as a hurt child would, the mantra I had adopted began to repeat in my head; at least I’m still here. Looking down, I saw my knees were pressed hard together. I relaxed them, only to feel dull achy pain in both my legs. The right leg was scared the same as my right arm, from knee to ankle. The left wasn’t that bad because that side hadn’t been trapped by the motorcycle.

A dog’s barking drew my attention away. I raised my head and looked around. The barking was from my Westie, but I couldn’t see that white fluffy ball against the green underbushes. I clung to the bench, as I twisted around looking for him, my fingers curling over the weather-worn wood. Then he appeared trotting down the little pathway with my older Scottie dog tailing him.

‘Hey, where you two been?’ I asked them.

At the sound of my voice, they both raced over and jumped onto the bench. I laughed as they both crowed my lap and licked at me. I felt wet, muddy paws on my jeans and coat, and even wetter noses and tongues against my skin. I hugged them both, breathing in the countryside in their furs.

Two more dogs appeared at my knees; a faithfully golden retriever and grey hound.  I freed a hand and patted them both. I’d missed all these dogs for the last few months and to be out here walking with them now was like a dream. I felt tears of joy coming to my eyes.

From behind me came footsteps and my husband’s voice calling my name, ‘Casey? Are you all right?’

I nodded and wiped my face.

‘I thought you were behind me. I didn’t mean to go off like that! Are you tried?’ he questioned.

‘Not really. I was just looking at the countryside,’ I replied.

My husband sit down and I put my head on to his shoulder. He slipped an arm around me and I put my hand to his chest. I shut my eyes and for a few moments listened to his breathing and the rustle of his coat. He put his other arm around me, hugging me tightly. He smelt better to me then any countryside ever could.

‘I should get you home, you’re shaking,’ he said softly.

I felt more tears in my eyes and nodded into him without saying anything.

I still had along way ahead of me to go but I was going to get there.

 

(Inspire by; https://scvincent.com/2018/03/15/thursday-photo-prompt-ahead-writephoto/ with thanks).

Live

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There was one story that didn’t need writing, she just had to live it instead.

Frogs Return #TwitteringTales

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There were a few ways you could tell the season was changing; warmer weather and green plant shoots, but for me I knew spring was here when the loud croaking and pop splashing of the frogs in my pond started waking me up each morning.

(Inspired by https://katmyrman.com/2018/03/13/twittering-tale-75-13-march-2018/ with thanks).