“I work mostly in the genre of metafiction,” I said, not looking up from my monitor. “I’m not really interested in your story.”
There were three crows, sat on different branches in the same tree. I lay on the soft grass beneath, staring up as the crows stared down.
Here we go again…
Because for some reason I wanted two write two stories.
The schoolmaster was leaving the village and everybody seemed sorry. I assumed, in the way city people do about country life, that it was probably normal in a close community such as this.
“No, Daddy,” a face appears over the net. There is a certain combination of weariness, exasperation and indulgence that can only a small child can bring to bear on its allocated grown-up. “You aren’t supposed to hit it so hard I can’t get to it.”
“Keep writing,” the tone wavered between hope and command. “No. No that. It wasn’t that.” She flipped past another postcard, reached for a cigarette and took a shaking drag.
“It’s rubbish, though, isn’t it?”
“What’s rubbish?” She sat up. Her sunglasses were pointless in the dimming light so she pushed them up to nestle in her salt-tangled hair.
Pig of a day, thought Marty Sinclair as he made his way down the back stairs of the precinct and out into the blazing heat of the lot. He turned it over in his memory. The woman, crying cold tears. The lost man, eyes scoured blind. Brushing off the warning tape at the scene like a wasp through a cobweb. Blood, heat, flies, a haze of stink. Kneeling in the dust, saturated in sweat and red at the knees.
How had it even begun? Out here, by his car. He was almost out, on his way home, when he heard the sobs. Delicate, tidy, unfelt; a crocodile weeping for the gazelle. The kind of tears that meant there was something someone didn’t feel too bad about, but they wanted you to know that they should.
Twelve hours later, here he was. Suit dusty, and gnarled around his limbs like old bark. Face a mess of stubble and bruises. Nowhere closer to where he thought he might be when he followed her out to the field behind the old cable factory. She wanted him somewhere else, his fate growing towards it as surely as if she’d planted his destiny in that cracked dirt, watered by the blood of the body he’d found there.
Fine. He didn’t have anywhere else to be, may as well see where this would take him. He half-fell into his car and slept, right in the heat of the morning.