Anniversary

A smile tugged at her lips as she took a step closer.

“This is adorable,” she said, her voice hushed. 

It was their one-year anniversary. She hadn’t thought he’d even remember. 

She took another step closer, the field of flowers spreading out in front of her. 

It was one of a kind.

“Just for you,” he whispered behind her. 

She could hear the smile in his voice. She turned towards him, drawing him close.

Just before their lips touched, she stopped. The intense gleam in his eye caught her off guard.

She spun back towards the field, their lips barely brushing. 

“What are they?” she asked, suddenly cautious.

He didn’t reply.

She stepped right up behind one of the flowers. Taking a deep breath, she walked around it.

Then she screamed.

Pale lifeless eyes stared back at her from an impaled head.

Behind her, she heard the cackle of a laugh.

© 2019 Sunday Photo Fiction, September 22 2019

Photo from Morguefile

Playing With Fire

“I can’t believe we’re finally twenty-one,” she said softly. 

I shook my head mutely. It had been a long wait. I looked over at her, about to smile at her, but something caught my eye.

Her face was caught in the flame of her sparkler. She looked mesmerized.

“Mia?”

She stared at the flame for a second longer, then slowly lifted her eyes. There was a strange smile twisting at the corners of her lips. Something about it made me shiver with unease.

Then I shook my head. This was my sister. My best friend.

“We need to do it tonight,” she said in a low voice.

“Do what?” The alarm bells in my head went off again.

“We’ve talked about this, Izzy,” her voice still soft and gentle. “I have fake ID’s. We’ll just set up new identities for ourselves.”

I opened my mouth, but no words came out. 

“It’s now or never,” she said, as the last flame danced across her sparkler and went out. We were standing in complete darkness now.

“Mia…” I started. “I was just angry at the time. We can’t do this.”

There was silence, but I felt the air vibrate with anger around me. 

“If you don’t help me, I’ll do it on my own.” Her voice came through gritted teeth. “But remember, you’ll have to pay the price.”

© 2019

Image from free photo stock Pixabay.com

Numb

Her head was spinning. Her knees felt like jelly and she could barely stand. She was still panting from running.

She couldn’t believe it. 

All those late nights and whispered thoughts. He’d been the only one she’d ever trusted. The only one she thought deserved to know the whole story.

She still remembered his ragged breathing as she’d whispered the words. Her back had been to him and it had been dark, but she’d known he was wide awake. Known he was hanging onto every word she said. Known the pain he was feeling, because she had experienced that same pain for years and years. 

She hadn’t felt it since she’d met him. Had been as close to happy as she was ever going to come. Numb, was what he’d sometimes angrily called her when he couldn’t get a response from her.

She swore and started shaking. Where the hell was the train? 

It was so dark in the station and she wondered yet again, why they never bothered putting on any lamps at night.

A tear ran down her cheek. She was shaking uncontrollably now. Her anxiety had finally returned. Yet the pain hadn’t, she realized somewhere deep down. 

Finally the announcement came. The train thundered into the station. 

She threw herself inside, just as she heard his voice echo through the station.

“Em!”

She flinched at the sound, then slowly turned around to face the closing doors.

He was running full speed towards the train. 

No, she thought and backed up, horrified that he was going to make it.

“Em! You don’t need to run no more!” She couldn’t detect whether it was anger or disappointment in his voice.

She let out a sob. She was going to have to run for the rest of her life, she thought, as she sank into a seat.

He wasn’t going to make the train. Just as the train lurched forward, he reached it.

Breathless, he yelled one last time. “He’s dead, Em! He can’t hurt you anymore!”

Because you killed him, she thought, as the tears streamed silently down her scarred face.

© 2019

Image from free photo stock Pixabay.com

Proud to be Reader’s Choice of October!

Let the Games Begin

Reader Margaret Gallop said:

A nervy description of feelings with a menacing ending.


3am. She couldn’t remember what had woken her.

She sat up. Just a bad dream? She strained her ears. No, there was a siren in the distance. She was about to growl at the injustice of life and go back to sleep, when she heard a creak.

She froze. Her arm was still suspended holding the corner of her blanket. She had no cats; she lived alone in a three-room apartment.

Another creak.

She dropped the blanket and pulled herself into a foetal position.

Two more creaks, each one closer than before.

She wanted to scream, but stuffed her fist into her mouth. She’d done a self-defence class once, but how would she know where to punch the guy in the dark?

Light. The synapses in her brain finally started firing. She put her hand to the switch.

There was a squeak as the door handle was pushed down.

She hit the light. Nothing happened. Hit it again and again, but nothing. She swore. When had the light bulb died on her? She didn’t know.


Keep reading this story at didcotwriters.wordpress.com


Gone

He bent down on the wooden planks, his old bones creaking as he leaned towards the shoes.

The material was a faded grey, washed far too many times. He remembered wanting to throw them out. He almost had, he remembered smiling. But then she’d begged him. Pleaded with her wide emerald green eyes that he couldn’t resist. She had the same eyes as her mother.

Slowly, he sat down, the shoes still in his hand. He stared out into the garden.

The old swing set, slightly moving in the cold morning air. How many times he’d pushed her. Higher and higher. She’d always been adventurous. Always in search of new things to know and to do. He’d always thought a thirst for knowledge was better than climbing the sides of mountains. So he’d let her be the journalist she’d always dreamed of being.

Of course she couldn’t just be the kind to write about the local life. She had to get out there. War journalism was far more up her alley.

“Come back inside, darling. Maybe it’s not even her.” His wife put a light hand on his shoulder.

He looked at her and held the shoes up. “She left these behind.”

©2018, FFftPP Week #41

Photo from August MorgueFIle 2018 1415390688o66bl