Over D.I.U-ing It#CCC

The hammering woke Mrs. Long before her alarm clock could. She rolled over, reaching for her husband but he wasn’t in bed next her.

Getting up, she crossed the room to draw back the curtains and swung the window opened. Looking down into the garden, she saw her husband. He was removing the rotting back fence.

‘What are you doing now, Tom?’ Mrs Long called.

He turned, peered up at her and shout back, ‘what does it look like I’m doing woman?’

Mrs Long shut her mouth before the angry reply could escape. She closed the window and walked away, thinking that she couldn’t wait for her husband to return to work so she could have some peace.

 

(Inspired by; https://crispinakemp.com/2020/08/26/crimsons-creative-challenge-94/ with thanks).

Light Stage #FridayFictioneers

The acrobats were like nothing ever seen before. Against the black stage backdrop, the men and woman were glowing neon lights come to life. They performed with a swiftness that years of practise had given them; they balanced on top of each other, swung from heights, juggled and walked on stilts.

The children wowed their wonder, cried their delight and gasped at the feats before them. When it as all over, the clapping echoed for an age and the acrobats bowed till their backs ached.

Back stage they celebrate and let their true fairy forms shine.

 

(Inspired by; https://rochellewisoff.com/2020/08/26/28-august-2020/ with thanks).

Purple Fields #3LineTales

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The heady scent of lavender sent me to my sleep. I dreamed I was waking through fields of the purple flowers. My fingers brushed the delicate blooms and their scent swam around me. Bees buzzed by and birds sing from the trees whilst above the sky was pink and orange, the sun just a smear. I could stay forever in this dream.

 

(Inspired by; https://only100words.xyz/2020/07/30/three-line-tales-235/ with thanks).

Steps #Writephoto

My granny use to say, ‘if these steps could talk what stories they’d tell!’

I’d laugh and say ‘tell me a story then.’

She would whilst we sat on those steps outside her house with the summer sun on our faces and people waving as they went by.

Granny would spin truth and fiction together, making her simple life exciting for my childhood self. There’d be stories of her dancing the night away with my granddad, long days working in the cotton factory down the road and her adventures as a nanny in London.

My favourite stories were the ones set in the war. Granny was a teenager and whilst her brothers, baby sister and mother moved away to the Devon to live with cousins, granny stayed in Manchester and worked in a factory making uniforms and other clothes for the soldiers.

There was something that fascinated me about that time. It seemed a different world with secrets still unknown.

Years and years later, the sad time arrived and granny’s house was for sale. My parents lived in Devon and though I had stayed in the Manchester for work, I had my own place. I did debate having my granny’s house but too much work needed to be done and I couldn’t offered that. It was easier to sell the place and try to move on.

‘Is there anything else you want to take?’ one of the moving men I had hired asked.

I looked back at the house and saw the front steps. I nodded and said, ‘I want those steps.’

The man was confused and I realised it did sound little silly.

‘I think that’s slightly above me,’ the man replied slowly.

Argument bubbled on my tongue but I swallowed and told him to go get the others and I’d help.

After, with the worn stone steps heaved into the moving van, the man told me that was properly one of the oddest things he’d had to shift.

My granny’s steps are outside my front door now. I sit on them with my own children and tell them all kinds of stories.

Some true and some not quite.

 

(Inspired by; https://scvincent.com/2020/07/30/thursday-photo-prompt-worn-writephoto/ with thanks.)

Late Night

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Just one more chapter, I tell myself as I lay in bed. Rain is patting against the window and I’m wrapped up cosy.

Just one more chapter, I say, turning the page and carrying on. The rain continues and the window mists over. I’m too comfy to move.

Just one more chapter, I declare, determined this time to make it so. Night peers in at me, her soft voice whispering me to sleep and the rain is my lullaby.

Just one more chapter, the book calls to me, how can you stop right now? I turn the pages read more and more until dawn’s light sends night to her rest.

Yellow

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I followed the girl in yellow through the woods. Sometimes, she would look over her shoulder as if she sensed me. I would pause and duck low, hoping the underbrush would hide me.

Through the trees we went, last autumn’s leaves decaying and silent under foot whilst spring flower pushed upwards. The wind stirred the young leaves and I moved away to keep my scent low.

A deer took fright and we both stopped to watch it leap between the trees and away.

The girl tugged her yellow hood up and bent her head to watch her footing.

I padded behind her, licking my lips. She was going to be tasty. Just like the girl in red.

Three To Dance

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The conjoined triplets waited for the signal to come onto the stage. They had longed for this moment since the dance teacher had told them she had made a part for them.

As the lead ballerina finished and the audience broke into clapping, the conjoined triplets stepped into the light.

Spy In the Garden

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I had to know what he was doing, it was like a addiction. I thought about him all the time since he’d left me. How was he doing? Was he eating okay? Did he have a new girlfriend yet?

I always tried to squish that thought down. Of course, he hadn’t moved on yet. He promised to always love me. How could there be anyone else?

From the bushes outside his parents’ house, I watched him sitting a table eating whilst his mother talk to him just out of view. I couldn’t hear what they were saying.

The bruises on his face were fading. He looked happier, he was smiling and nodding.

When was the last time he had smiled at me like that?

I balled my hands into fists, dried blood still in the lines and soil buried under my nails Anger filled me, burning in my chest like an immortal fire. I wanted him back. I needed him back! How could I live without him, my one true love?

I got out of the garden and went to the front door. I rang the bell.

Putting my hands behind my back, I fixed a smile on my lips and waited.

He answered the door.

His face turned white, his eyes growing large and his mouth trying to form words.

‘I’ve missed you, honey,’ I spoke in a breathy voice.

He shook his head and stumbled backwards.

‘Are you going to invite me in?’

‘You’re dead,’ he gasped out, ‘I killed you!’

Now Not Arriving On Platform 8

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The lights reminded me of a disco but the art deco walls didn’t fit in with a club scene. Nor did the clean, white stripe floor and the plastic seats in the middle which were empty. On either side of the platform were the train lines just lit up by a touch of green and pink light.

I was waiting. Walking slowly with only the tread of my shoes and whisking clothes making noise. I wasn’t wondering why I was alone or why it was quiet, I was just happy to be away from the bustle of the full platforms.

I felt the vibrations then heard a train coming into another section hidden by a wall and earth. I imagined all those people pushing their way on as people tried to get off. The bang of cases against legs, the howls of children and the fight over seats.

Smiling, I was glad to be away from all of that. Going over to the overhead boards, I looked up and read what they both said. Frowning, I wondered what had gone wrong because both signs said ‘no service.’

But I had triple checked and my train was coming into platform eight at five past three. I checked my watch and saw it was almost three. Of course, I had thought that a few other people might be waiting here too but this long haul, night train was normally quiet.

Were was the announcement to declare the next train? Perhaps, I had got it wrong…

I left and went back up to the stairs. I felt another train coming. I turned and saw a flashing of lights from the dark tunnel ahead. Maybe, I hadn’t been wrong?

I stepped back down and walked a little way along the platform which must have been new because way was it so clean and bright? The lightening too, I had thought odd but it could have always been like that. Who pays that close attention to a train station decor?

The train came into shape and I saw the destination on the front and it was where I wanted to go. Overhead, a crackling came to life and a voice spoke distorted words that I couldn’t make out but I guessed it was the notice for my train.

The doors open. No one got off.

I was the only one to get on.

Nun

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Dear God, I don’t want to be a nun anymore. I’m sorry but that’s just the way it is. I don’t feel cut out for what you are asking me to do. Mother says that you’ll help me but so far I’m struggling to see that hand. How can I bring new sisters to you when they are not interesting?

The world has changed and I fear we all must change with it. People don’t want a church anymore, they want something more, something we can’t give them. Perhaps, it’s a something even you can’t give it to them…