Flash in the Pan
After completing a short story writing course with Writing Magazine, I have been dabbling with Flash Fiction. My brilliant tutor, Lynne Hackles (thanks for your abundance of patience, Lynne) reminded me that giving oneself permission to explore a variety of genre is perfectly okay and hones one’s writing skills.
The following flash story lends itself well to this ghostly time of year. I hope you enjoy reading it.
Destiny by Design
It was just after midnight. Sally walked along the stream in a daze. Her insides churned. It was a clear night and the full moon lit the way to her favourite wooden bench at the edge of the stream. She needed to think.
Sally sat heavily on the weathered bench and stared down at the slow trickle of the water. She couldn’t believe what fate had thrown her today. She had worked hard to finalise the biggest deal of her life, which would be the make or break of the company. Today the contracts were supposed to be signed. But they weren’t. Instead, her long standing partner, Jasper Waltz had double-crossed her.
Sally bent over, placing her head in her hands. The betrayal unbearable.
She had worked fifteen hour days with Jasper to build up their interior design company and had trusted him wholeheartedly, since they met seven years ago. They had shared the same vision and ambition, or so she’d thought.
She slumped back on the bench and sighed. A single tear rolled down her face. She had no idea how to cope. She tried to fight past the emotions that sat heavily in her stomach. But she couldn’t. She felt sick.
A rustle in the nearby cluster of trees startled her. She turned her head and saw a figure hiding in the shadows. The hairs on the back of her neck stood on end.
No answer came. The shadow moved and Sally shuffled on the bench.
‘Show yourself,’ she said, louder this time.
He stepped out. Sally gasped as she recognised the face. It was him. She stood up to face him head on.
‘What are you doing here? Haven’t you done enough?’
Sally crossed her arms and glared at Jasper. His face was pale and expressionless. There was something unnerving about him. Sally took a step back as he came closer.
‘I’m not going to hurt you, Sally. I just want to talk.’
‘Now, you want to talk?’
Sally listened to his excuses. She flinched as he tried to place a hand on her arm. She shivered and she saw her breath hit the sudden cold air.
‘I’m sorry, Sally.’
‘Sorry?’ said Sally, uncrossing her arms and taking a step toward him. This time he backed off.
‘I was desperate, Sally. I want to make it right again.’
‘And how do you expect to do that? It’s done. You stabbed me in the back. End of.’
Sally could hear her mobile ringing in her handbag and wondered who would be calling at this time of night. She looked away from Jasper and grabbed the phone.
‘Sally, something terrible has happened,’ said Marie, Sally’s personal assistant.
‘Tell me about it,’ snapped Sally.
‘I think you should come to the office.’
‘Just tell me,’ she screamed down the ‘phone.
Sally felt her blood rush to her feet as the news began to sink in. She looked towards Jasper. He was gone.