Sunday 21 April 2024

Sunday Serial, 240 x 70, Gill James,13. In the Woods 13 November 2018, a shot of brandy,


This collection is a collection of seventy stories, each 240 words. They were inspired by the first picture seen on my Twitter feed on a given day.


Nicole could hardly see the ground. The cold air hurt as she took each breath. But she needed this: fresh air, relief from the four walls, space to think. She set off slowly.

She knew these paths well. Muscle memory told her how fast she needed to go before she should turn to the right or left. In the distance she could hear the main road. Civilisation and home were not far away. Except that suddenly it went very quiet.

Had she taken a wrong turning? Had she suddenly forgotten her way? Were those other feet she could hear? Or was it just the echo of her own? She stopped. The other footsteps stopped as well. 

She took a deep breath and carried on. The mist was slowly clearing now and the woods were endowed with a soft golden light. The autumn colours were beginning to show. The traffic noise returned . All was well. Until she heard the twig snap just behind her.

Her heart thudded into her chest as she turned to look back. There was nothing. Could it have been an animal? Most likely.

She had a stitch in her side. She decided to walk for a while.

Then he jumped out at her. His face was distorted and he looked as if he was in pain. Except that she realised that wasn't it. His flies were open. "Help me," he whispered. He held out a hand towards her as the other carried on its urgent work.

She ran. Out of the woods. Down the road. Into their cul de sac. Up to the house.

Mark flung the door open. "Sweetheart, we need to talk."

She nodded.           

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