:: Flash Fiction archive ( 2000-2005, click for articles pre-2006)

Half Lights published 21/06/2012

emreapyI know he’ll have the dirty mouth on him. Between the singing and the slurring. He’ll be stooped over trying to take his t-shirt off. Fall off the edge of the bed trying to get the legs out of his jeans. I can pretend to sleep. Do the snore noises from the movies. But he’ll wake me. Shake my shoulders and call my name. Harder and harder until my eyes open. He’ll push me over. Drool on my neck and chest. Climb on. By the time I’ll get into it he’ll be limp. In the morning, he’ll have a headache and I’ll blast open the curtains and leave the door open. Bang the pots onto the hob. Stir the porridge by tapping the spoon off the metal in a frantic beat. Morning talk radio will fill the kitchen with all the auld ones complaining. Overcharged. Frustrated. Not taking it anymore.

By E.M. Reapy.

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Bovver published 12/06/2012

photo-on-2012-06-12-at-2141_thumb‘Think of it as initiation into the rough and tumble of army life you posers,’ Bovver had instructed the wimpering rich kids. Bovver knew that it wasn’t worth pitying these types; within months they’d be in positions of high rank in civvy street making life hell for the working classes. The crap they handed out indirectly was always far crueller and nastier than anything he could deal. Because their violence and cruelty remained indirect and thus invisible they also got to keep to the visible moral high ground. It made Bovver sick to understand how all this worked, but that’s the way things were for Bovver. He knew what he knew, and it all stank like a thirty year old unwashed arse hole.

By 99%

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Viewing published 19/05/2012

gilesrufferShould they go up to the bedroom, he asked. He let her walk in front of him again and on the stairs she noticed paintings on the wall. She tried to look at them, a blur of greens and blues and undefined lines. She thought about the middle-aged man’s life outside of this moment in time, how she didn’t want to know any of it. The bedroom had a single bed, a dresser, a window that looked out onto a garden and some shelves. She had placed her beer on the dresser and turned, realising that the middle-aged man was closer than she had expected. At this distance, she could clearly see the skin between his eyelids and eyebrows drooped down like his developing jowls, making his eyes look half-shut.

By Giles Ruffer.

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Roman Road published 21/03/2012

celiaforbesWe moved into the house next to the fire station on the fifth of November and all night the sirens raged. Our ritual began that first night. As I lay in bed reading Lydia Davis, you put your head around the door. “Can I sleep in here tonight?” “OK,” I said and turned over to face the wall. You deposited your loose change on the broken chair next to the bed and climbed in fully clothed. Our transaction continued in this way, a few loose coppers in exchange for sleeping next to me. No kisses, no sex, no affection, just uneasy sleep.

By Celia Forbes.

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Lone Ranger Ain’t No Stranger published 08/03/2012

loneranger2Mescaline, mescaline, that’s my tipple of toxin.

Bit pretentious, mine’s an Amaretto on the rocks.

A book will give you all you need simpers the tiny reader on the aperitif woman’s head.

Bite hard on a porcupine, crumple it up and squeeeze out its poison onto your lips booms the Lion.

I like a concertina when it sings, steams the anvil man behind his mask of glass.

By Alan McCormick & Jonny Voss.

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Between Saint Roch and Music: three flash fictions published 06/03/2012

utahnatag21“Mother! Mother! Mother!” The lead singer shouted it over and over again. I was glad I had always called mine Mama, and that my little boy did the same with me.

The guitar screamed, the singer/player’s fretting hand shooting up and down like it was turbo powered and chicken fat greased. The bass player had the bass face, mostly, keeping a line on digging. The drummer kept his eyes closed and sticks flying. All that sound, it was hard to believe it was really only three people.

There was no definite anger in the Mother mantra. It was difficult to figure. Could have been homage, could have been fear, or rage, or respect. Could have been anything. At the end, the singer fell to his knees, went prostrate, forehead on floor. That, for me at least, clarified.

By Utahna Faith.

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Tantrums published 21/02/2012

ewahlstromThere were others. There was Amy. There was Kate. There was a different girl named Kristen, this one with black hair and hipster bangs and a thing for Johnny Cash. There was my high school ex girlfriend Carrie, who I somehow found myself in a near-threesome with downtown before she got too drunk, puked, and needed to be driven home. I went back to the other girl’s apartment feeling unfulfilled and lonely.

There was the aborted foursome at the house party on Minnesota, where I tried dip for the first time and a Brazilian boy named Paulo sat by the bed trying to carry on a conversation about the Strokes while his girlfriend undressed and started making out with a girl I’d met the week before.

“I didn’t love them at first, but once I saw them live, I became a fan,” said Paulo.

“Make sure her boyfriend fulfills his nakedness,” slurred his girlfriend.

By Erik Wahlstrom.

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Kicker Girl published 09/12/2011

kickergirlNow lookee here, girl, what do you call that mess on the wall?

Dunno.

It’s a scribble, isn’t it? And a scribble don’t belong on the wall, it belongs on paper. Am I right or am I wrong?

Yep, s’pose so.

Right or wrong I asked, girl.

Right.

Right, thank you.

Granddad Pete was always shooting off about something and his granddaughter, Sophie, was normally in his firing line. She peered out from her lofty vantage point and endured it all with the cold stare of teenage oblivion.

By Alan McCormick & Jonny Voss.

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The Maid published 19/10/2011

christianaspens1Might as well enjoy the perks of being a victim while I can, I think to myself, as I get into the car. After today there will be no more free cabs, pity drinks, or polite condolences. There will be no more questions, no more talk. The real silence will set in and nobody will want to know, because in many ways, this never happened. This cab ride home is the end of it being a reality to anyone but me. I can sense all this — the months ahead — as the car pulls away. I can sense that this feeling of fear — fear of sitting alone in a cab, sitting alone anywhere — is here to stay. I can sense that I don’t own my own thoughts anymore, as we leave Manhattan.

By Christiana Spens.

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The Final Sentence published 14/10/2011

julietjacquesSat in the hospital bed, I examined the flesh wound below my right shoulder. Passing out had saved me. Rather than shooting me again, believing me dead, Austin Rayner tried to flee: tripping over my body, with typical gracelessness, had cost him vital seconds. Seeing people coming up the stairs, he took the lift. There were two elderly ladies inside, who asked him about the blood on his shirt. He raised his gun, but too late: as soon as he reached the ground floor, he was arrested. A neighbour had heard him destroy my computer and called the police.

By Juliet Jacques.

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