Sunday short short story: Just A Couple Of Initials by MorgEn Bailey

Posted every Sunday, the following piece of flash fiction is from Morgen’s shorter short story collection, FLASHES, available in eBook and paperback from Morgen’s online store where you not only get the best price but can either instantly download the collection or purchase the paperback dedicated to you or as a present! We hope you enjoy this story…

Just A Couple Of Initials

“Give us a hand, love.”

“Doing what?”

“With this.”

“What? I can’t see what you’re doing.”

“Up here in the loft.”

“Yes, Henry, I know you’re in the loft.”

“I’m trying to move something but it’s too heavy.”

“Can’t you leave it ’til later. I’m tired. You know visiting mum takes it out of me.”

“How is the old-?”

“Oh, you know.”

“Yes, only too well.”

“Henry, what have you been doing? You’re covered in-”

“It’s only dust… don’t think anyone’s been up here for years.”

“Mum wouldn’t have been since Dad died. She made some bread for us.”

“Are they allowed to do that?”

“Of course. It’s a care home, not a prison.”

“I know, but I thought the whole point of paying all that money was that they had everything done for them.”

“They do, but she feels useless…”

“Well…”

“What is it you’re trying to move?”

“I’m not sure. A chest of some kind with a brass plate on the front.”

“What does it say?”

“Nothing really.”

“What do you mean ‘really’?”

“Just a couple of initials.”

“Which are?”

“W… R…”

“WR? Who’s WR?”

“I don’t know but it’s pretty old…”

“How old? Centuries?”

“A couple at least.”

“No, it can’t be. Mum was… Could it be four?”

“Four what?”

“Four centuries.”

“But that would make it 16…”

“Could it be?”

“I suppose.”

“I’m coming up!”

“I thought you were too tired.”

“I want to see.”

“Why? It’s just an old chest belonging to someone called…”

“Walter Raleigh.”

“Raleigh. The bicycle guy?”

“No, the tobacco guy.”

“What? You don’t think…?”

“I do. Move over…”

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Sunday short short story: Hand-Painted £2.50 by MorgEn Bailey

Posted every Sunday, the following piece of flash fiction is from FLASHES ~ SHORTER SHORT STORIES. This collection comprises 249 stories all under 500 words, formerly published in Morgen’s Fifty 5pm Fictions Collection. FLASHES is available in e-book from Amazon and will soon also be available in Morgen’s online store! We hope you enjoy this story…

Hand-Painted £2.50

Is it seriously only nine o’clock? Suppose it’s a good thing, still early, could pick up.

Float… bags… plastic sheeting in case it rains… what have I forgotten? Feels like I’ve forgotten something. I should have written a list.

Ooh, that looks nice. Bit big though. No, Suzie, resist. Supposed to be getting rid of things, not…

Hello. Certainly. £2.50. Hand-painted.

No, I won’t take a pound.

Some people. If I wanted a pound… cheek.

Sandwiches, that’s what I’ve… now, where…? Kitchen table. No doubt Felix will find it before…

I’m starving. I wonder if there’s a food… ice cream van, that’ll do I suppose. Bit cold for an ice…

Pick it up, go on…

Hand-painted. £2.50.

Be like that then. Miserable…

50p for that. Thank you. Do you need a bag or… no problem, bought loads. Thanks again.

Three for a fiver those, used once and… yes, a fiver. £5. No, I can’t split them, they’re a set.

£12.74? Where did the 4p come from? Bet it should have been…

Yes, very pretty isn’t it. It’s hand-painted. Two-fifty. I know, but it’s hand…

There’s no need to be like that.

At least it’s not raining.

No, I’m sorry, the sheeting’s not for sale. Oh, plastic bag. Certainly, I’ve got plenty. What was it you wanted to buy? You don’t? I know I said I had plenty but… alright then, you do look rather laden. While you’re here I’ve got a lovely hand-painted… Just the bag, OK. Seeing as you asked so nicely.

50p each or three for a… just the one. Thank you. A twenty-pound note? You’ve got nothing smaller? It’s going to wipe me out but…

That’s £2.50. It’s… Those? £5 for the set… of three, yes.

It’s gone quiet again. Ten thirty. Is that it?

Excuse me, do you think this is it? Sorry? That there’ll be more people only… two o’clock? Really? I thought we could go when we liked. But what if no one else… Oh, I didn’t know that. No, not this one. This is my first actually. Been to a few but just to buy. People can be quite ru- Here? £2.50. Yes, I thought so too but I’ve only had one offer and that was for a pound. I know! You can’t buy an ice cream for that. Mars bars are seventy-something. I remember when they were 10p, although they were smaller. Four chews for a penny too. And it used to be 5p to get in the cinema. Not much change from £10 these days. I know. That’s why I can’t understand why people are quibbling so much.

Looks like you have a customer. Nice chatting with…

The three for five… great! Thank you. I’ll wrap… That one’s two-fifty. I could, I suppose, come down a little seeing as you’re having… it’s hand-painted though.

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Sunday short short story: Like A Newborn by MorgEn Bailey

Posted every Sunday, the following piece of flash fiction is from Morgen’s larger short story collection (250 stories), Fifty 5pm Fictions Collection, available in eBook and paperback from Amazon  and Morgen’s online store where you can not only instantly download the collection but also purchase the paperback dedicated to you or as a present! We hope you enjoy this story…

Like A Newborn

He rested his fingers on her curves, slowly brushing her soft, smooth neck.

Bending down, he breathed in, the smell of wood as still alive now as it would have been all those decades ago, when another master, a craftsman, had made her form… lovingly, patiently, as reverently as Andreas felt now.

She still gave him the same thrill holding her as he had when he had first seen her, touched her, held her in his arms like a newborn. Of course she wasn’t a newborn, she’d had several owners before Andreas but he knew he’d want for no one else; inanimate or animate. Real women held no interest for him. He had tried once or twice to please his mother but now she couldn’t remember who he was, he was free. Free to play, free to love, free to be who he’d always wanted to be; alone with ‘her’. She’d not been his first of course. She was too exquisite for him to have practiced on, but his mother had seen his talent from the first time bow struck string.

‘Strike’, a word his mother would have used. A hard word, like her, only now their roles had reversed; she’d become the child – round the clock care to his round the world touring.

She’d told him his father had been musical. She’d tried to play, with the first violin, but had no patience, no talent. Andreas’ sister Sophia, the second child, second at everything, which wasn’t how their mother had worked and she’d hardly noticed when Sophia grew ill. “Weak”, their mother had called her, even when she wasn’t. The doctor was finally called in to “sort her out”, only there was no sorting to be done. Their mother, for the first time in her life, had left it too late – the schedule overlooked for anyone but him. So he’d done everything for her, Sophia, lead his life for both of them and now, as he looked at the priceless Stradivarius, at the side of the stage, he smiled, stroked her neck and put on his smile.

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Sunday short short story: Something Borrowed by MorgEn Bailey

Posted every Sunday, the following piece of flash fiction is from Morgen’s larger short story collection (250 stories), Fifty 5pm Fictions Collection, available in eBook and paperback from Amazon  and Morgen’s online store where you can not only instantly download the collection but also purchase the paperback dedicated to you or as a present! We hope you enjoy this story…

Something Borrowed

It was the ‘something borrowed’ that meant so much to Laura. She’d had a pocket especially sewn into the wedding dress to keep it safe. Her grandfather’s pocket watch. Nothing special you might think and it wasn’t at the time he’d given it to her, just sentimentality but when her mother died it took on a whole new meaning.

It had been sitting on her mother’s kitchen table when Laura had collected the dress and taken it to her for safekeeping. Except now it was her mother she wanted to keep safe; buy her a new heart, steal one, borrow one.

The watch remained on her bedside table or in her jeans pocket for the three weeks between her mother’s death and the day she became Laura Elliott.

As the music started, Laura turned to her father and they both stepped forward. She wasn’t sure whether it was his lack of emotion that was holding hers back but she was grateful.

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Sunday short short story: The Picture On The Mantelpiece by MorgEn Bailey

Posted every Sunday, the following piece of flash fiction is from Morgen’s larger short story collection (250 stories), Fifty 5pm Fictions Collection, available in eBook and paperback from Amazon  and Morgen’s online store where you can not only instantly download the collection but also purchase the paperback dedicated to you or as a present! We hope you enjoy this story…

The Picture On The Mantelpiece

You slump in your chair as your son plays with the dog. It’s been a bad day but you try not to let it show. You’ve had weeks of bad days and it’s getting to you. Jasper squeals as he pulls Bertie’s tail and it’s all you can do to bite your tongue. Jasper watches you leave your chair and head for the dining room. Bertie follows you, glad of a distraction and hopeful that there might be something in it for him, although he knows his treats are kept in the kitchen.

You pour yourself a large scotch, they’re getting larger as the week goes on. It’s only Wednesday and at this rate you’ll forgo the glass. Emily would have said you have a problem but you’re grateful that’s she’s no longer around. She always had something to say, and sometimes you couldn’t shut her up. But you found a way eventually.

Your head hurts. You take another swig of Glenfiddich which soothes the back of your throat. You switch off the TV and Jasper moans. “Off to bed now,” you say and he trundles upstairs with Bertie following, leaving you staring at the picture on the mantelpiece.

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