Time To Break Free?

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TIME TO BREAK FREE?

As a fledgeling teenager, I dreamt of being a rebel. But between the rigid Presbyterian church we attended every Sunday and a father not afraid to wield his thick leather belt, I learned to conform.

Now, as a law-abiding, middle-aged man I pay my taxes. I don’t drink or smoke and have never taken drugs or cheated on my wife. Rules and regulations; bylaws and petty bureaucracy were made for people like me.

Hence my present dilemma. The arrow tells me to drive one way. So I do.

And I wonder if I will ever break free of this roundabout?

 

Mike Jackson

100-word story for Friday Fictioneers.

Picture courtesy of  C.E. Ayr

The 8.37 to Bridlington

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THE 8.37 TO BRIDLINGTON

The instructions had been clear – ‘Load your cases onto a trolley. Then, with the castle on the hill to your left. Head straight for the brick wall with the sign saying PLATFORM 7’.

We looked at one another, counted three, and charged. It worked! We’d passed straight through.

As we dusted ourselves down and looked around us our excitement turned to dismay.

The train waiting on the platform was not the Hogwarts Express, ready to take us off to our new school and untold adventures, but the 8.37 commuter train to Bridlington stopping at Collingham, Hutton Cranswick, Driffield and Nafferton.

Mike Jackson

A 100-word story for Friday Fictioneers.

PHOTO PROMPT © Sandra Crook

The Return Journey

A 100-word story by Mike Jackson

THE RETURN JOURNEY

“Remember.” I whispered, “We walk across the bridge, dead quiet, not a whisper. Got it? And no stopping for a quick peep over the edge. Remember what happened to Jimmy yesterday.”

We got to the middle before we heard the thing sniffing. It knew we were there.

I grabbed young Sally Tompkins and tossed her over the rails. Huge, hairy arms grabbed her mid-air and dragged her beneath the bridge.

There was a cracking sound of bones snapping and her screaming stopped.

As we safely reached the other side I wondered who I’d have to sacrifice for the return trip.

Mike Jackson

The Clock On The Mantelpiece

The Clock On The Mantlepiece is one of a series of 100 word stories.

THE CLOCK ON THE MANTELPIECE

My fingers wrap around the stone in my pocket, your sticky blood still warm to the touch.

I was going to throw it in the lake, alongside your bound and weighted body, but I kept it instead. A reminder of the day I finally found the courage to do what I’d wanted to do for many years.

I’m thinking of putting it on the mantelpiece, alongside that hideous clock your mother gave us as a wedding present. Like our marriage, it never worked.

They’ll be a constant reminder to me of the two women I hated most in this world.

Mike Jackson

Daddy’s Watching You

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DADDY’S WATCHING YOU

 

This was not the most salubrious establishment in town. The note on the window told you it’s owners were shadowy characters, not open to complaints. The two ceramic butterflies on the wall outside must have been someone’s futile attempt to make the place seem more homely. It hadn’t worked.

Every morning I ate the burnt breakfast, drank the foul coffee and spoke to nobody. This place and I were made for each other.

I would watch the house across the street.

Watch the bastard who’d married my wife and was playing ‘daddy’ to my son.

And every day I cried.

Mike Jackson

The Sunlight Hurt My Eyes

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THE SUNLIGHT HURT MY EYES

That’s where she kept me. The room with the blinds.

I remember once letting the blinds up, the light from the sun was amazing. She was so angry when she saw what I’d done.  I remember her hitting me with that belt of hers. God, I had some bruises that night.

I didn’t see the sunlight again for another ten years. Not until that policeman came in and took me away. 

I cried for a week. Kept asking to see her but they wouldn’t let me.

I know she ’s evil but you’ve got to remember, she’s still my mum.

Mike Jackson

A 100-word story for Friday Fictioneers.

No Time for ‘Buts’ Mate

“Name?”

“Peter Jones.”

“You’re late. You should’ve been here Tuesday. What kept you? When did you die?”

“This morning, I think. I remember stepping into the road then nothing.”

“Says here you should’ve been knocked down yesterday not today. Typical of that Grim Reaper, always messing up his timings. Still, you’re here now. You’re next.”

“Where am I going?”

“No idea mate. Now, I need you to pop through that hole. A bloke called Peter will process you on the other side.”

“But…”

“No time for ‘buts’ mate. If I don’t get this queue sorted I’ll miss my tea. Next!”

Mike Jackson