A Dark Pool (inspired by Laura Knight)

The wind spins around her. The hairs on her arms bristle – the heat of the summer has been lost. Her feet cling to the rocks, hardened and worn after a summer spent scrabbling over rocks, searching for shells and crabs.

This is the first time that she has been alone in a while and she relishes it.

The sea swirls around her and she stares into the dark pool where the water spins, crashing against the rocks, spraying her feet and making her shiver. She watches the water swirl, mesmerized, and then from beneath her dress she takes the letters and tears them into shreds, scattering them onto the waves, watching the ocean swallow them and the pieces disappear, like ash floating on the wind.

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Dancer [Flash Fiction]

Her hair is coiled into a bun. The strands of hair are pulled tightly – so tightly that they hurt. The girl scratches the top of her neck, desperate to dislodge some of them.

‘Don’t do that,’ her mother says and she drops her hand so that she’s staring out the train window again, watching the approaching city. She’s silent – her hair still feels too tight, but there’s no point complaining now.

As they pull into the city, her mother taps her on the shoulder, helps her into her coat, and checks her hair again, just to be sure.

She sits in front of a mirror – her hair coiled into a bun, secured by pins, a hairnet, and plenty of hair spray, like it always was before. She’s well practiced now.

Her mother’s instructions echo in her mind.

Someone rushes into the dressing room, knocking over a can of hairspray. It clatters to the floor and she watches it roll away, under a table. An announcement is made on the loudspeaker.

The memory fades into the distant past.

It’s just her, alone at her mirror.

She puts her hand up to her bun, to be sure that it’s secure. It took a while, but she got used to the tightness, the hairs pulling at her scalp.

But now she has to do her own hair.

short story, first line,

Coffee, A Wetsuit – and not much else // Short Story

I had been driving all night. My only thought was of coffee. I needed it and I needed it fast, or I was going to fall asleep at the wheel. I couldn’t even take in the little Cornish cove that I had pulled up in front of as I was drawn towards the only source of caffeine I can see. The small cafe is only just putting out the signs, but as I stumble towards it, I don’t care. I can’t even process the fact that I had arrived in Cornwall at long last.

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