Category Archives: Flash Fiction

Frozen

White light dapples the snow through the trees. Winter’s breeze blows at flakes rested on branches, forcing them to chute to the ground like dancing angels. She rests on a bench; allows the winter sun to warm her face. She imagines that she’s sitting in a Christmas card scene; that everything is picture-perfect. But the woolly jumper that she wears makes her skin sweat and itch. She feels uncomfortable and disorientated. She gets up, walks; and decides that today she’ll smile at no one; and that she’ll keep her eyes fixed on frozen paths, which threaten to swipe her feet.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Elm Lake

Elm Lake ©2013.alittlebirdtweets

Whenever there were grey curls in the skies, the lake would awaken. Sinister waves would ripple on its surface, and rekindle a whispered voice that spoke of a past happening. The voice would travel through trees and into nearby cottages, where it was eager to be heard. But, no one would listen. No one wanted to believe that it was the voice of the girl, who had drowned in the lake half a century ago.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Immortal Love

She narrates a passage from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet; and her heart simmers as he watches her lips, with his ancient eyes.

‘A tragic story, my love,’ he says, brushing his fingers over the calligraphic text.

He bends to kiss her. She gasps, and feels blood trail down her neck. She watches it drip onto the page and expand like large ink spots.

‘You’re now immortal; and my death will shortly follow,’ he says.

He falls to the floor; and she watches his face turn pastel.

And on this day, every thousand years, she lights a candle in his memory.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Whitechapel

‘Whitechapel in winter does make me quiver.’ She said, pulling her shawl around her shoulders.

Fog curled lavishly around streetlamps; like smoke from coal-fires had done, in the Victorian era.

‘It’s been said that the ghost of Jack the Ripper prowls these streets.’ He teased.

‘Oh, stop it!’ She grinned, thrusting her elbow into his side.

They walked along cobbled Commercial Road; which was once a market where the rich and poor intermingled and traded.

‘Hey, what’s that?’ She shrieked, pointing ahead into a doorway.

Their mouths fell, as they watched the grim shadow of a knife magnify over them.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Wiped Out

In the past few days, the sun has produced a landscape of burnt, unyielding trees, here on earth. There is no sign of life. No birdsong. No dragonfly drones. No vivid flowers. As evening haze begins to tangle around branches, Shelby’s vision begins to wane, and he stumbles to the ground. In the first minutes of his stillness, he begins to sweat furiously. He smears his bare arms with dry earth, to cool them, and to help protect them from burning. As he does, he notices his skin has become translucent, and his bones are making a callous attempt to perforate his skin. He knows it’s a sign that his body is succumbing to this earth. He stands up, and continues to tread the rough terrain, in his wild search for water.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Memoir of Mrs Coral Edwards

08/09/1932, 12 Brinkley Place

This house is unsettled, now that you’re gone. Its corridors, once stage sets to our stifling dramas, now shiver with dejection. Its walls, once listeners of our wicked quarrels, now echo the same words over like a maddening amplifier. I can only scream with the hope that it will dowse the uproar in my head. I know that this house pines for your return. I believe it feeds on our conflicts. I’m here alone, Noah, and I’m ever so afraid.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Afterlife

My senses are more profound in the spirit world. Today I hover above my gravestone and listen to melodious birdsong. I watch sunbeams saturate the cemetery in ethereal pallor. I suddenly sense the familiar saccharine scent of white carnation, and I turn to see my wife standing before my grave, holding a white bouquet.

“Life is dreadful. I miss you dearly,” she whispers.

She lays the bouquet upon my grave and sobs into a tissue. She walks away. I try to pull her back, to console her, but my hands pass through her. She disappears. And I’m left heartbroken.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Irreversible

I dig my nails into his tattoo, and watch my name Rosa fall to pieces upon his skin. In his sleep, he releases silent billows of air; and I inhale them devotedly, counting one, two and three. I feel like I could consume every part of him. He must feel me digging him, for he awakes startled, tired and bemused. He tugs his arm from my grip, looks at me as though I’m crazy, and rolls over on the bed. His coldness kills me. My head sinks heavily into the pillow. My body shivers with emptiness, and I curl into a comfort ball, pulling my knees, my arms, into my chest. My heart wrings knowing that he’s out of my reach. And my mind cries for just an ounce of his love.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Freedom

Jessica turned on the bath taps and poured bath crème into the running water. Sweet magnolia filled the room and it alleviated the pressure in her head. The past two years had been stressful and unbearable in the office, and sometimes she wished she could fly away to a faraway land, to escape her monotonous life. She brushed her hand through the deep steaming water and turned off the taps. She lit tea-lights that were scattered around the bathroom, undressed, and slid into the bath. The water melted away her aches, and she closed her eyes and began to dream of her ultimate, faraway life. She imagined living in a cottage, in a meadow, surrounded by butterflies and deer. She imagined reading a favourite book as she watched the sunset on the horizon. She dreamed of a husband and children, and a home full of laughter and happiness.

She was suddenly broken from her reverie, when she felt a sensation on her back. She stood up, her heart pounding. Bath water cascaded down her body, over the bath, and across the floor. She grabbed a towel, stepped out, and wiped the steamed mirror with the back of her arm. She looked at her back in the reflection and saw two large red blemishes either side of her shoulder blades. They began to itch and she scratched them with her nails, until she was digging deep into the skin. Blood trickled from them, and she watched as white hairs began to grow from the wounds. She pulled them to try to remove them, but they stretched into long fine wires. And she realised that they were not hairs after all, but long white feathers. She was growing wings. She screamed and closed her eyes with disbelief. After several seconds she braved one last look in the mirror. But upon opening her eyes she saw that it had steamed up again; and in the steam were five scrawled words… five words that would change her life forever,

You are free to fly.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Reflections of Lady Abigail

I yearn for the pucker of youth that I once relished,

I ache for the shimmering face that could arrest the eyes of others,

A pursing of my lips only discloses the sunken contours of my face,

A wild flaring of my eyes only exudes bleakness,

My soul is dim,

I’m a shattered rose,

I’m crumbling,

I’m withering,

I crave the fragrance of light musk, summer dresses, flower picking, the lightness of step.

Time, you wait for nobody!

Time, you are not my friend!

I close my eyes in fear of my knowledge,

Inside I cry,

I fly,

I die.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Separate Ways

‘So you think that listening to those bland records over again and drinking yourself into a stupor is a good way to live your life then, Danny? Because it certainly isn’t the life I want to join you in.’

‘Yeah I do think it’s a good way to live my life as it happens, Anna! I enjoy myself, alright?! All you ever seem to do is drift around me like I’m invisible, or nag me with that annoying voice of yours! Why do you think I turned to drink in the first place, eh?! Come on Anna, let’s face it, you don’t enjoy life, do you? You don’t sing or dance or have a laugh anymore! Seriously, what happened to the fun-loving Anna I knew back in the day? Where’d she go?’

‘The Anna you once knew disappeared a while back, Danny; when she realised that her husband would never change and would always choose drink over her. I think that’s enough to stop any woman from singing, dancing and having a laugh, don’t you think?!’

So why don’t you fuck off then, Anna, if I’m that bad?’

‘Oh, I am. I have a cab booked. I’m fucking off today.’

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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The Locket

Annabel encased the ancient locket with her soiled hands; and in the twinkling of a second, a silver luminosity radiated through the gaps in her fingers. It illuminated her pulsing ruby blood, reminded her that she was alive, that she was still capable of loving herself.

She pulled the clasp, opened the locket, and studied the intricate hieroglyphics etched inside. She blew away the seeds of earth that had managed to cling to it; in the years since it had last been dug up, opened.

Her steely breath fired life into the locket, and waves of white light encircled her, warmed her soul. She smiled, closed her eyes, and finally released the self-doubt that had, for a long time, devoured her.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Elsie

Elsie swirled the teacup around in her crumpled, conical hands; working the tea-leaves into a symbol. She had provided readings for many people over many years; it had given them an insight into their future.

‘What can you see, Elsie?’ The young woman asked.

‘My dear, I saw my own face merged with a skull. The skull is a symbol of demise. I am going to die very soon.’

The woman trembled at Elsie’s words.  As she became pinned to her chair with fear, she witnessed Elsie’s face contort; her eyes bulge and her head slither slowly to the table.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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Doppelganger

She stood at the side of the darkening country road with her hands behind her back; effectively recreating the stance of the blonde actress in the Hitchcock film. She had become fixated by the character and had perfected her dialogue, her accent, her wig and attire, to the finest detail. She stared at the horizon and yearned for a car to flash its blinding headlights into her eyes. She longed to wave it down, to take position in the passenger seat, and to ask the driver for a light so that she could blow circles of smoke through her red-perfumed lips, to illustrate her elegance. And she hoped that during the nights journey, that she would make the drivers eyes weary with her oddly behaviour, and that he’d be kind enough to drive her to Bates Motel.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

This story has been critiqued by Eric Keys;

https://erickeys.wordpress.com/2013/05/29/a-response-to-the-doppelganger/

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Miranda

Miranda refused to rummage in her handbag for keys, on dark nights, at her front door. She had watched numerous horror films and knew that someone would likely creep up on you in that second that you became distracted. So, when she found herself wobbling home from parties, too nauseous to take cabs, she would grip the keys in her hand, always ensuring one chub was pointed outwards, so that it would slide into the lock with ease, when she arrived at the door. She had never contemplated that one night the keys would become a weapon, become imbedded in her attackers’ eyes.

©2013.alittlebirdtweets

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