Short Story

#18 – Ooze

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I don’t know what made me do it.  God knows.  But it just seemed so,.. natural.  Many things do after a few drinks.  I didn’t think about how weird it was to see a silver straw poking from an old stone wall.  It was the lipstick mark at the tip and the line of sticky syrup that caught my eye.  Someone had seen this on the street and puckered up.  And if they could,….

The men in white coats are staring at me.  I think they want to use the knives again.

….. The syrup wasn’t even that sweet.

(c) Tim Austin 2016

Hey, don’t blame me!  This is the kind of imagery I get to some words,… I need a psychiatrist,… 

Thanks to Ian Abbot – creative adventurer and artist – for today’s word.  You can find him at http://www.thegeometrician.com/ or on Twitter @TheGeometrician.

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Come back tomorrow for “Tendrils”.

Tim.

#16 – Lost

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The teddy bear gazed up, a drip of water splashing against its matted face.  Far above, the world passed by: hundreds of shoes clattering an endless thrum, their shadows flickering through hesitant light as it sank through a metal grating.  Voices echoed from a world of sun, raised in laughter and joyful whispers.  Below, the bear bobbed and twisted in the grey water of the sewer.  The arms that once held it were gone.  The lips that once kissed it were gone.  Only the eyes that beheld it remained, gazing down, tears falling – her last warmth striking against the bear’s fur.

(c) Tim Austin 2016

A bit of a sad ‘un.  Something similar once happened to me.  Still miss that Panda.  Still, if you’ve liked it, please let people know and link it on your social media using the buttons below.

Today’s word was donated by prep school teacher and blogger TinyGrayCells, who’s blog of Classroom Reflections can be found by clicking here.  If you’re a teacher or a parent, I thoroughly recommend it!

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#14 – Archive

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Shadows smothered the vaulted halls of the General Register Office, a handful of grimy lamps spewing dim light into the stuffy air.  Sam Desmond was at home here.  In the darkness, he would wander the metal maze of filing cabinets, reading and enjoying each document before slipping them into their allotted draw.  In those files whole lives were condensed to dry descriptions: “Rhonda Jones: Died age 38, Teacher”.  “Charles West: Died age 73, Retired”.  Here they slept in ink and paper, neglected by all but him.  Smiling, Sam opened the newest file.  “Sam Desmond: Died age 60, Filing Clerk”.

(c) Tim Austin 2016

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The word for this story was suggested by Dr. Abby Astle: A wonderful person, a trusted friend and a very good GP.  

If you’d like to suggest a word for me to write a story on, pop it as a comment below or tweet it to @timaustin2k using the hashtag #onewordonestory.

Don’t forget to follow the blog by hitting the button at the lower right.  See you tomorrow for *Breathes* “Llanfairpwllgwyngyllgogerychwyrndrobwllllantysiliogogogoch”

#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.

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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”.

#10 – Rainbow

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The rain melted with Helen’s tears as she looked up into a yawning maw of scorched grey clouds, wheeling and turning in a tempest far above.  Were she able, she would have joined the thronging mass of blackening mists and lost herself to their fury. The green of the grass stretched bright as a challenge to the clouds above and she lay back, torn between worlds.  She waited, water soaking through clothes and shivering her pin-pricked flesh.  And there it was: the sunlight against the clouds – freedom in a prism of colour, her troubles tumbling free in laughter.

(c) Tim Austin 2016

Thanks to the tenacious Emma Rucastle for suggesting the word “Rainbow”.  Emma is a theatre producer and director based up in the North West of England – you can reach her at @elaru on Twitter and at http://www.elartproductions.co.uk/ 

Got a word?  Get in touch!  Pop it in the comments or tweet it to me @timaustin2k using the hashtag #onewordonestory.  Follow, share and get involved!  I can’t do this without you! 

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#9 – Termite

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Don’t stop – no time. Keep hunting, keep going, keep working. No time. Don’t pause: they’re counting on me. What if I stop? No! Never stop. Stop and you die. Stop and you fall to the dark place below: to the mound of rotting corpses forgotten, spent; fodder for the roots of the trees on which we feast. No: keep going, stay useful, stay relevant. Never stop. Straighten my tie, switch on the screen, drink the coffee and rock no boats.  Protect the hive, protect the Queen:  a good little worker, always.

(c) Tim Austin 2016

What a word to be handed!  Thanks to the charming force of nature that is Aliki Chapple – Actor, Luddite, proud Grecian and Activist.  You can find her on stage with The Rose Company or on Twitter at @amaenad 

Got a word you’d like me to write about?  Tell me in the comments section or tweet me at @timaustin2k using the hashtag #onewordonestory 

Don’t forget to hit that follow button for tomorrow’s story: Rainbow!