I asked friends to give me a word each so I could build a story from three. It just seemed like a good idea because wine and I’m not saying these wee tales are any good but they made me feel good writing them and that was lovely, thank you. Written in six hours or so, so go easy.
SLUG SUGAR SWEAT
They called it a slug, you know, that round that goes in the gun or whatever. I called it a bullet and they all sniggered, sniggered at how I held it, how the sweat poured down my face as I aimed the cursed thing.
One thing’s for damned sure – ain’t no one gonna be callin’ me sugar no more.
TOPOGRAPHIES SAXON WHISPERING
Saxon flew true as as an arrow, admittedly one guided by the gravity of the worlds it passed, worlds once unknown and astounding yet now used like so many ships that pass in the night.
Saxon had been gone so long that even the children of those who launched it had turned to drink.
Saxon had been tasked first with sending back topographical maps of the exoplanet deemed most suitable for the relocation of our species. It was the first fully autonomous artificial intelligence humans created but when it whispered back to us that it was in orbit the human race was already lost.
Saxon had the data as to exactly how long it could continue to maintain orbit but was sad enough already so didn’t bother to check.
Saxon fulfilled its mission, and then some, before going slowly mad. Millennia later when its orbit decayed, the shooting star was seen by the indigenous life below as proof of God and from then on all children had their genitals mutilated to appease that God.
For it is God’s will.
SUITCASE DARTBOARD SKIP
Janet loved to skip. Harriet, her twin, hated her for it. In fact it made her blood boil to imagine how carefree and happy her sister’s face must have looked.
Their father was a drinker and when he wasn’t down the pub he’d be in the shed knocking back homebrew while firing darts into a rotten old dartboard. That’s how he met the mother of his girls – god rest her soul – playing darts but this isn’t their story.
When Harriet used to get home from school she’d often drop her bag in the hallway and head straight out to the shed. The family photo albums were starting to fill up with big white Janet shaped gaps – not that anyone looked at them anymore anyway.
Yes, Janet loved to skip and Harriet loved to throw darts at pictures of her.
When they fished that suitcase out of the canal everyone who knew the girls assumed it was Janet’s body and they knew what that meant, damned right they did.
So it came as a shock when they looked for Harriet but found Janet instead, skipping along, her face carefree and happy.
The girl’s father was hanged.
Janet never skipped again.
MONSTER CHAIR SPRING
Monster couldn’t get comfortable.
People think monsters never tire but they do.
Try as she might it was either the tightness of her scar-tissue or her untrimmed claws or the blood on the leather sofa.
‘What is it with you lot and leather anyway?’ asked Monster of the cadaver in the corner. ‘Why cover a chair with the skin of something you’ve eaten? That’s gross.’
Very little about humans made sense to Monster.
It’d been a long winter where she’d longed for spring but now even the thought of how hot summer would be aggravated the hell out of her.
People think monsters never grind their teeth but they do.
SCIENTOLOGY CAKE GIRAFFE
It was Xenu the giraffe’s birthday and for weeks the other animals at the zoo had been storing away what food they could, hiding it from the zookeepers, so that the monkeys could make him an extra special giraffe cake. That night, after the zoo had closed, all the animals snuck out of their enclosures and went to pay him a visit.
At the sight of his cake, a tear rolled down Xenu’s cheek which he wasn’t able to wipe away on account of his really long neck. ‘Speech! Speech!’ cried the animals.
‘Well… Oh, my dear, dear friends, okay then… As you all know I’m a giraffe of few words so how about I tell you all the story of my name?’
A penguin near the front raised a flipper and asked, ‘Lord Xenu, right?’
Xenu the giraffe nodded slowly.
‘Yeah,’ the penguin shook his head, ‘I don’t know how anyone believes in Scientology. Complete nonsense. Could never happen.’
ABUNDANCE WEALTH PROSPERITY
Wealth is neither prosperity nor abundance without sausages.
CODEINE SPOONS MICROAGGRESSION SUMMER PATIO STEPFATHER
For anyone who’s ever been prescribed codeine they’ll know that it’s not worth the injury but it becomes as much a part of you as the injury.
My old mate, ‘Mr Spoons’ as we all used to called him, was wont to disagree. Microaggressions were his forté, that is until he spiralled quickly into true aggression, albeit ineptly and more like a pigeon spreading its wings to look big so it can escape with the bread, shit itself then brood.
I guess it’s because he reminded me so much of my stepfather that he always springs to mind. I’ll never forget those two weeks we spent one summer on the patio whilst Mother was away.
Mr Spoons never made me feel that way.
Not even once.
BUNION OBTUSE HEMIDEMISEMIQUAVER
With her deformed toe in my mouth I spluttered out an ode to bunions in hemidemisemiquavers but couldn’t make the buh sound.
Obtuse as ever, she started to cry. Onions always did that to her.