Short Story

Wild Horses

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– Why are you here? 

 Slurring her words in broken English, she leaned in, drunk and defiant, sizing me as a another ‘guiri’ the moment I came across her field of vision, moving in for the kill.

Emerging from the corner of this dimly lit scene, a severe looking bruiser watching over her shoulder I tried to ignore her at first, sensing trouble but she lured me in, confident in her feminine power despite her state.

I tried looking past her, desperate for eye contact with someone, anyone; the indifferent bar staff, the German guy she was draped over when I walked in. She wrapped her arm around me, commanding me to get her another whiskey but I just laughed.

Unfazed, she orders another drink, gets close as if to kiss me then asks me where I come from. Ireland, I say. With some disdain, She asks me if I’m from Dublin and without much prompting goes on a rant about Dublin and how much she loves Cork, the second capital.

Her aim is clear, to test my limits, insult me until I yield to her or reject her. A plan of transparent sexual aggression. She is from Galicia so she starts to dance, in time with the music playing in the darkness of this dimly lit red room.

Creating her own space, the hiply attired clientele fade into the background and I can’t turn away anymore. She’s not young, her face lined with experience but her form is shaped in all the right ways and her hands glide over her body as she moves with the sensual assurance of a woman. I’m turned on but uncomfortable too, a good catholic boy still deep down trying to keep my instincts under control.

But not this time baby, no way. I’m under a spell and I like it. Fuck restraint.

– why am I here?

I’m here to dance so let’s dance.

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Short Story, Uncategorized

Hide & Seek

 

viaduct 2

Photograph Copyright of Jason Merrick 2007.

 

Hiding was never his strongest suit. Every time he played, his friends would be quick to find him and then taunt him for not trying hard enough. But David didn’t like hide and seek. It scared him, made him feel alone. He would feel the weight of darkness upon him; the random cruelty of nature ready to hurt without warning. Especially here playing with his friends in the gorge, the old viaduct overhead. Here, where the plants twisted around your body as they twisted and choked the tall trees; the only sounds here the water flowing nearby and the incessant chirping of birds.

He held his breath, waiting to be found. It would be more difficult for them this time. Finding an opening through the hanging branches of a blueberry bush he curled up like a newborn, the wet mud and hard stones underneath keeping him alert. The sky outside turned grey, his new hiding place cloaked in semi-darkness but from within he could still glimpse his pursuers through his green veil, life flickering like an old movie screen. His heart thumped, every breath getting louder, shaking his narrow body as he waited for them.

But they never came and time crept forward, the moon staring down from above, slivers of light through the thickets.  The night creatures began to stir around him in the hiding place and as he tried to scream in fright they crawled over his skin, drowning him in shadow, dragging his body into the earth and claiming his soul for all time.

Those who knew him returned to find nothing but silence and blood, lost forever beneath the viaduct.

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