#13 – Burden

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“No! ” James was angry now. Why did she keep saying that? Why did she keep insisting? 

Frail fingers reached for his, grasping: weak like a child.  Her pale grey eyes were begging.

“Stop it, Mother.  Please,… just stop.”  

A machine whirred and hissed as the old woman struggled to speak.  James closed his eyes, a tear spilling against his cheek. 

The forms he clutched crumpled in his fist. 

“I never loved you.” Her thin voice was desperate.  James turned and arranged the flowers in the vase.  

Without another word, he dropped the ruined forms into the trash.

(c) Tim Austin, 2016. Photo by Daan Stevens on Unsplash

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This story is powerful to me personally for many reasons.  I apologise if it causes any upset in the reading – this is the kind of thing that occasionally swims in my head.  

A massive thank you to Emma Wallace – a kind and very beautiful soul – for suggesting this word.  If you’ve a word that you’d like me to turn into a story, pop it in the comments or tweet it to @timaustin2k using the hashtag #onewordonestory.

Come back tomorrow for “Archive”.

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