I wrote a couple of 250 word (super) short stories to enter into Literary Death Match's bookmark story competition. Thought I'd post them here because I had fun writing them.
Curse of the Sun
Sweat slips between my skin and the rubbery fabric of my coat, chafing all over. The sun is burning brands of every stitch into my skin. This polyester prison will only hold me for a little longer. Soon I’ll be free.
Walking into the park I see shaded eyes and shining smiles everywhere. Nothing brings the punters to the park like the sun in London. The excitement makes me taut against my bodily covering. I’m bursting to get out.
Sunglasses leave me uncertain whether anybody is following my progress. Some might question a man in a long coat on a hot day, but they’re more likely to dismiss me as a beggar or a leper. Not for much longer.
I slip from the grey of the path to the green of the grass. Now it’s just a matter of finding the right spot. Snaking through chattering circles of bodies I see a spectrum of faces at different stages of sun and alcohol induced merriment. It’s finally my time to join them; the laid-back leisurely Londoners. It’s been so long.
Where all the footpaths converge, I stop. Here I’ll get the most sets of eyes on me, from the walkers and the sitters.
I’m primed. I grab two fistfuls of my coat. I look for a face. There: the old couple eating ice cream on the bench. I yell wordlessly straight at my target septuagenarians. Faces whip round at me. I pull my hands apart. The coat pops open.
Bathetic Bus Ride
She got on at Angel. He looked up from his book, catching sight of her as she stepped onto the top deck. He felt an immediate flush of attraction. This was exactly the kind of woman that Greg pictured himself with.
If she’d sat somewhere behind him it would have been over. She’d be out of his view, out of his life, only in his imagination for a while; soon replaced by another.
However, it just so happened that she sat right next to Greg. He should have returned to reading, but she pulled out her phone and he glimpsed what she was listening to. Did that say…?
Then she pulled out a book; one of Greg’s favourites. She got to reading, not noticing Greg’s surreptitious glances to triple check what he was seeing.
Now it was a problem. Here he was, next to a facsimile of his ideal woman. If he didn’t speak up and say something this moment would haunt him forever. This woman on the bus would become That Woman From The Bus.
Now the universe had fashioned the meet cute he’d wished for, was he just going to sit there, a lumpen ball of cowardice?
He tried to think of ways to open the conversation, but all he could think of were reasons why he shouldn’t.
He decided. If she stayed on two more stops, he’d talk to her.
Two stops. Nothing.
Two more stops. Ten thousand internal insults.
Another stop. He composed himself.