Monday, 4 February 2008


So this is it:
Ripped, torn and scattered across the room were fragments of a single sheet of lined paper. Just one sheet of the many random papers piled on the threadbare, once-cobalt carpet. Though each of those papers were somewhat different; smooth, intact and neatly stacked. Perhaps, what made that particular sheet so unlike the others was the navy inked scrawl of its contents.

A sole, bare window framed the iron drizzle of the world beyond, where an anoraked stranger could be observed approaching the flats, and cast a dreary grey light over the deserted room. Apart from those papers the room was virtually empty. It contained just a bed with covers tossed hurriedly over it and an ancient grey raincoat hung on the back of the door. The pockets of the coat were deep and full to bursting with scrunchled receipts, sticky wrappers from children’s sweets, the dried petals of a red rose and a single photograph. This photograph was the very last reminder of how things had been before that letter had been written.

From the entrance to the flats, into the iron drizzle of the outside world stepped a tall, dark figure. He whipped his flimsy anorak hood over his head, checked once again that he had the photograph safely hidden in his anorak pocket and without so much as a backward glance disappeared into the dusky wet of the backstreets.

From another doorway, further down the street, a pair of glistening, emerald eyes watched. Once they could be sure that the man had gone, a woman emerged. Bullets of rain soaked through her inappropriate evening dress, plastering her wavy, straw-blonde hair to her head as the fierce, angry cold gripped her bones. Air bit sharply at her throat causing her breathing to become short and ragged. She tugged her silky shawl tighter round her slight, shivering frame, wishing that she had taken the time to fetch her old, though comfortingly familiar raincoat. Returning to retrieve it would be too risky so she continued down the slippery street clutching her purse, with the second page securely concealed in its lining, close to her. So delighted that she had managed to retain that vital evidence, she had forgotten about the photograph.

The lock on the door of the deserted flat was now swung wide to reveal a scene of devastation. Hundreds of papers had been hurled in fury from their previous order. The mattress from the bed had been shoved against a wall in desperation. The old, grey raincoat lay discarded on the floor with receipts, wrappers and rose petals scattered together like autumn leaves.
In the distant labyrinth of drenched, gloomy streets the distinct wail of a police car could be heard. The tall, dark figure stiffened momentarily. He darted urgently into the door of a local pub. There he instantly melted into the safe mêlée of punters. Attempting to keep his face shielded by his insubstantial hood he snaked his way towards a table at the back where a rat-like man awaited him.

Silently he placed the photograph face-up on the table between them and returned his skeletal, nicotine-stained hand to his anorak pocket.

A chubby, smiling face, with a shock of curly honey-blond hair was punctuated by the sparkling, green eyes. The diminutive figure was captured standing in a garden of radiant red roses, his hands outstretched in an attempt to grasp the camera. Carefully turning the photo over an inky navy scrawl summarised the moment ‘Dillon, two, St.Francis Street’. The rodent like man cackled a grating chittery noise, his brain buzzing with thoughts of revenge. With this snippet of seemingly insignificant information they could ruin her, something they had failed to do with the letter

1 comment:

krysia said...

Its been interesting to see ur earlier drafts and i think u pulled ur ideas together really well.
I like the ending - leaving us with a good sense of wat has/is going to happen but still leaving a lot of unanswered questions.
Maybe at times u are a bit over descriptive but that is probably cos I am an impatient reader - lol.