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Just a Thought?

June 10, 2010

Well, here I go, straight into my first piece of Flash Fiction. I hope you enjoy it as much as I enjoyed writing it. If you do, I could be tempted to write more. Though I still think a short story should last longer that a pot of coffee!

🙂

Just a Thought?

His eyes had been closed a while. Opening them slowly, he looked up. Immediately, he caught her gaze again.

She smiled. Her eyes shone with a brightness that sliced through the overcast day. They cut into his drab existence, as if a razor had been drawn quickly over the skin of a ripe peach – sweetness oozed; a perfume of palpable intensity flowed over his soul.

Who was she?

The train thundered down the track, continuing its inexorable progress. In one hour, he thought, they’d reach the end of the line… it would be over.

He smiled a short, sheepish acknowledgement, not wanting to give the slightest impression that he was consumed by her presence.

Her smile… he’d never seen such a lovely smile. He had, of course! But, right now, at this instant, he held no memory of such another. It was the only thing he could focus upon – the only thing that seemed to him to be real.

She’d entered from behind him, walking the length of the near-empty carriage, before turning. She retraced her steps in his direction and, on catching his upward glance, she took the seat opposite his. Now she sat across the small table that separated them, smiling – as if she knew something.

Earlier, as she first took her seat, he’d averted his eyes – closed them. He’d allowed the rhythmic swaying of the carriage to draw him into its succour. As the heavy engine drew forward its tail of wanton, rumbling followers, the rhythm drew him into temporary sleep – the vision of the women’s face etched into his mind.

But now, though, he was awake. Awake to her attention, awake to the caress of that smile.

The women moved her arm with graceful ease, sliding her hand deftly within her purse, withdrawing her mobile phone.

He looked on, trying hard not to stare at her perfectly painted finger nails as she tapped out a text. He wished, not for the first time since she’d joined the train – for Christ’s sake, he’d even dreamed it – he wished he could summon the courage to speak. He wished he could ask her for the number of her telephone, so that he could, maybe, call her… if she didn’t mind?

But he looked on. Her beauty, the occasion, whatever… they conspired against him. He was struck dumb. “Please…,” he wanted to cry out.

The scenario played over in his mind as the train pulled into the station, the journey over.

He sat, transfixed, as the girl with the smile rose. She collected her purse and, stopping a moment, removed a card from a discreet silver case. She placed the card carefully before him, twisting her fingers until it faced him. She paused, holding his gaze once again in hers, and smiled a last smile.

“You asked for my number,” she said, and left the carriage.

The spell broken, he glanced down at the card: DR ALICE CRAVEN, MENTALIST, and the strap line: UNLOCK YOUR INNERMOST THOUGHTS.

18 Comments leave one →
  1. helena permalink
    June 10, 2010 7:11 am

    I like the twist at the end. All the analogies were great. I wish there was more (I’m not one for short, short stories either.) But the way you put it together works great for the story. Especially with the title.

    • June 10, 2010 3:26 pm

      Hi Helena, many thanks – and the title was a last minute change, too. I am thinking about using it as the basis for a proper “short” story, so you may get to see more yet! 🙂

  2. Barbara Ellison permalink
    June 10, 2010 8:37 am

    You did a great job! Loved it. I agree with Helena, I wanted more.

  3. June 10, 2010 8:46 am

    Thank goodness I didn’t have to match this story. Definitely very engaging, with that obvious British feel.

    • June 10, 2010 3:31 pm

      I have to thank you, Greg! One of the great things I have found about writing with you guys is that we seem to lift each other’s game! Long may it continue! 🙂

  4. June 10, 2010 9:28 am

    I agree with Greg – glad I didn’t have to follow it! Makes me wish I’d written something new rather then splashed up my old one from last year – kudos to you, David!

    You could definitely expand it if you wish, might be a fun short story or novella.

    • June 10, 2010 3:36 pm

      Hey, C.J. nothing wrong with yours! I certainly couldn’t handle your genre… Am I not that Wicked? – Well, perhaps in other ways 😉

  5. Robert C. Nelson permalink
    June 10, 2010 1:17 pm

    Very nice work. As you know, C.J., my prose is much longer, but I do enjoy the shorter pieces as well. Flash Fiction is an art form as is any other type of writing. I love art. What you have written is art. Thank you.

    • June 10, 2010 3:38 pm

      Thanks, Robert. I appreciate the comment and I agree with your sentiment on art!

      • Robert C. Nelson permalink
        June 11, 2010 9:22 pm

        I am so sorry, David. My comment suggests that C.J. wrote your exquisite piece. Bad Bob. I am truly ashamed, especially after you wrote such a brilliant masterpiece. I should have said: What David wrote is art. Forgive me, please.

  6. yearzerowriters permalink
    June 10, 2010 7:52 pm

    Nice payoff. The tension was building up nicely, the will he /won’t he across the close confinement of a train carriage, then she reads him like a book!

    marc nash

  7. June 10, 2010 8:07 pm

    Aww. Nice psychic lady! Good thing he didn’t have a bunch of lewd thoughts upon waking.

  8. June 10, 2010 9:51 pm

    First flash fiction, you say? Hard to believe – you smashed it. I was expecting either a last moment of bravery or the afterglow of regret. What an intriguing surprise at the end!

  9. June 10, 2010 9:57 pm

    I thought of the song “Beautiful” by James Blunt so the twist at the end really got me. Loved it!!!

  10. June 12, 2010 6:16 pm

    Marc, John, PJ, Michelle, thank you all for your comments. It’s great to hear from you all!

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