From the Archive Short Stories

Three Hundred and Ninety-Three Words

I rediscovered these openings in an old folder. I wrote them nearly a decade ago and forgot about them. They were all pretty much streams of consciousness.

I rediscovered these openings in an old folder. I wrote them nearly a decade ago and forgot about them. They were all pretty much streams of consciousness. I decided to drag them out into the light of day. They appear as I wrote them back then, unedited and unchanged.

Perhaps, in the not too distant future I can use them. Or not, only time will tell I suppose.

Three hours and his chance would be gone. Already fingers of light chased their way across the flat edges of wall, floor and ceiling. They made their way unencumbered except for a pile of hastily removed clothes. As Erik lay there not remembering the name of the person next to him the previous night unfolded. With each caress of the tongue over furred teeth a vivid slice of memory flooded back through his brain. Vile taste revived distasteful memory. Each was a forensic sliver of a random slideshow. Each appeared without the relevant context.

A soft noise emanated from the stranger – with each gust of breath a fresh rankness exploded. This was not the movies; she would not wake with a tender kiss. He would dress quietly and leave. His tongue flicked, immediately the image of a glass – clear liquid with gently bubbling trails snaking their way from base to rim. Through refraction or reflection (he could never remember the difference) the girl’s cross appeared inverted and her white teeth lengthened into conical daggers.

Money bored him and without conscious effort he forgot. Looking right was a panoply of religious iconography associated with a very famous carpenter. He chuckled dryly. “How easily fools  convince themselves.” The deal had been done, best to leave. A hand accidentally brushed past him slowly his head turned. Embers suddenly rekindled into flames “What the hell?” All humour had dropped from the voice. His unusual partner drew breath and shuddered.

“I keep bleeding,” no one listened – words stirred and the dead leaves skittered, chlorophyll cockroaches, all directionless. Small goals compared to the monthly sacrifice given by half the globe. The offerings were stolen by cotton and dumped, no reverie was given. Small gods died. Tough shit.

There was a slow rhythm that increased in intensity heading toward a final climax. This was never reached as far as I know they still dance. A less than subtle celebration of forgotten beings. Vivid, alive, pointless.

The Man awoke violently and, not for the first time worried about his faith. A divide gaped in his mind.

Outside was a row of brothers the ceaseless belief and faith of the ignorant. It reminded him of a joke. A rabbi, priest and imam walk into a bar and the barman says: “this is a joke. right?”

By magpiestories

An English teacher by trade, an author at heart, it only took a global pandemic for me to start writing my first novel. Along the way, I found a love for creating shorter fiction which I share on this site along with some updates and (hopefully) useful writing tips.

I hope you have a... pleasant time reading.

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