I drew a line of my own, but did not tell you. It followed the contours and undulations of your steadfast delineation. Rising and falling in parallel. Stretching forward to the horizon, to a point where the world falls beyond reach.
You could never know, of course, what a china cup could mean to someone. She knew that as she watched you drink and place the cup back in its saucer, casually, as if a cup was just a cup.
Out on the lake, the low plaintive call of Canada geese lingered in the mist, the sound reverberating in the moist air like an echo.
This story was first published by Visual Verse
There’s blood. I taste it when I swallow, metallic and unmistakable, like the tip of a battery on my tongue, and when I try to cough it up, a hand touches mine and something bleeps.
The idea comes at night, of course. It creeps up the stairs to the bedroom where you sleep, and you wipe it away, this thing which brushes the skin of your forehead. But it finds a way in, and whispers to you, ‘hush, hush.’
You dip fingers in the water expecting cold, feeling warmth. It ebbs away as the boat edges closer, ever closer. Colder, ever colder.
Nine in the evening, and the sun starts to dip below the rooftops, the dust and heat of the day, turning the sky a ruby red. September, though it feels like high summer. There’s the same lazy slowness in the air and it has her reaching for the cool of a water glass which she holds to her temple.
A short story I wrote as an exercise for the weekly Faber Academy #QuickFic competition. This week they asked for stories inspired by a randomly-selected Wikipedia article, which happened to be about Sverre Farstad, a Norwegian speed skater and Olympic gold medallist. This is my take on the prompt. You can read the winning entries here.