LEMMINGS

There were six of them now.

Jimmy had been the first. He had been strolling along until he came upon the sign: ‘Sidewalk Closed – Please Use Other Side.’

The sidewalk appeared to be passable, but the sign told him otherwise.

Jimmy had waited for a break in the traffic. It was an eight-lane highway. Cars and trucks shot passed at ferocious speeds. He’d managed to get two lanes out before an artic sent him scurrying back.

Angie had been the next to join him, then Cassandra, Bill, Jason and Siobhan.

They took it in turns to dart out into the road, walking, pausing, sprinting – then turning and retreating. Cassandra had made it halfway, but a succession of buses brought her back.

Jimmy finally gave up. He looked at the closed sidewalk and strode past the indignant sign.

He got five paces before the ground began to fall away. A massive sink hole opened up and swallowed him. The hole spread across the road. Two cars failed to stop and crashed over the edge.

The dust settled. The traffic was blocked. Angie, Cassandra, Bill, Jason and Siobhan crossed over to the other sidewalk and carried on their way.


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Copyright J. Hardy Carroll

Written as part of Sunday Photo Fiction. Write a story of around 200 words based on the photo prompt given (above). Hosted by Al Forbes. For more details visit HERE.

To read more stories based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.

THE GIRL ON THE OLD TRAM

Modern, sleek cars had been rolled out along the route.  At the time Jonathan travelled every morning an ancient tram still clanked and rattled along.

Accompanying him each day were the unchanging faces that shared this journey. The familiar smile and muttered greeting part of their set routine.

She appeared one grey morning. A ray of light piercing the everyday gloom. She sat opposite him. For the first few days he couldn’t making eye contact.

After a fortnight they established a nodded ‘hello’ when she took her seat.

Now Jonathan began to dream. Should he speak to her? What should he say? Was there a future for them? He resolved to talk to her the following Monday.

When she got on the tram that morning she was talking to Richard. Richard was another regular on the old tram. Richard boarded at the same stop as her.

She nodded to Jonathan as usual, then spent the rest of the journey chatting to Richard.

The next day Jonathan got an earlier tram. It was modern and sleek.


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Copyright Yinglan

Written as part of Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. The challenge is to write a flash fiction story in around 150 words, based on the weekly photo prompt. Thanks as always to the challenge host Priceless Joy. For more information visit HERE.

To read other stories based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.

IMPENDING

‘And now at twenty-nine minutes past eight, a summary of the headlines with Zeb Soanes. You’re listening to the Today programme on BBC Radio Four.’

Harry snapped the car radio off. He’d already heard the morning headlines twice. More protestations of doom for the National Health Service. Someone moaning about exiting the European Union and the state it would leave the country in. More child sexual abuse uncovered. Somewhere in America another mass shooting. They could have been reading out headlines from two years ago and no-one would have noticed. President Trump hadn’t even said anything ignorant or unintentionally funny to lighten up the oppressive nature of the grey autumn day.

Eight-thirty. That meant he’d been sitting in his car for over an hour, and he’d travelled about ten miles. Who at the council had decided to close two lanes on the main route into the city on a Monday morning? The car in front edged forward another metre before its brake lights lit up again. Harry didn’t even bother closing the gap. It had to be this morning of course, when he actually had a reason to get to work early.

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