This Scream Called Us (Rated 15)

They say a scream is a scream is a scream. Hurt is hurt. Pain is pain. That both subside with every unfulfilled second. They say many things. But what do they know? What do they really know?

The mind is a curious container, delicate even. If the mind were glass, one might shatter it with a scream, which I suppose you did.

Wordless moments, memories birth from open mouths. Memories! Too loud. Too raw. Reflections of moments past until wiped clean by sound. Until…

My everything you were and ever shall remain. My heart cannot beat without you. These romanticised lines of obvious affection. This sentimental twaddle. I wish to silence this scream called us. I wish to close these lips and sleep.

After tonight, maybe I will. Once I tear the secret you’ve kept from your overworked larynx.

I still have the key I copied. I have many such copies. You can never be too careful where safety’s concerned.

The latch lifts with a click like a match struck on once love. We did love, I think.

I’m in. Nothing’s changed. The same lavender stink to cover the cat litter. It assails my olfactory senses and I almost gag. Almost. Ginger, said cat, stops purring the moment I enter. He always hated me. I lurch forward but the cat’s quicker. He leaves without a handful of hair, whilst I’m left with a sergeant’s stripes across my skin. If only I’d closed the door! So, I do.

I let the light rest. I know the way. Darkness is good, it hides a multitude of sins. The mirror in the hallway remains empty. The photo on the telephone desk goes unseen. And I wonder, is it still there?

A sudden urge to sit on the sofa, turn on the tv and watch football, open the fridge and steal a beer. It’s fleeting but there.

I shake my head so hard my eyes rattle.

The first step creaks so I seek the second. Silence. I want to shout COME ON! I don’t, but I want to.

Stopping halfway, I take a seat. One last memory I think. A sigh. An aimless three-sixty. The darkness deprives as the lavender stink prods. I’m back on my feet and climbing before I realise I’ve sat.

Everest climbed, I have a desire to pee. The bathroom door stands open, so I do.

I take a certain devilish pleasure in peeing on the toilet seat, in the sink, bath. Small victories and all that. She’ll never see it but her mother might.

Once relieved, I’m back on the case. First door, second, third… I stop.

There’s a lump in this once-home made a prison. There’s a someone, a certain someone I know. Not for long.

The rage rises.

Her former rebukes, my dismissal, return like a needle shoved into my eyes. And I strike. And I strike. And I strike.

Everything she made me leave behind, the untold secret and more besides, stick like a lump in my throat. But I’ve got her. At last, I’ve got her.

“What have you done!”

A voice.

Her voice?

Her voice!

The landing light flicks on behind me.

I see my crimson creation and turn away retching out my innards.

She comes at me like Ginger on a bad day. She screams and screams and screams. But this is my dream and she can’t hurt me.

Only when she stops do I hear her. Only when she stops and crumples in a heap whispering the same words over and over again, do I understand what I’ve done.

“Our daughter. She was our daughter.”

And the cold steel I’ve spent seven years polishing finds a nice warm home in my chest. I smile.

My ex-wife screams again. This time, it’s not for us.

The End.


He was unknown to us that night. A tall, dark figure framed by the lightning of an uncommon storm, the stranger tipped his hat, grinned, and then ordered a beer. He drank this with the eyes of the town upon him, wiped his mouth, nodded, then left.
"Bye," I said, out of nerves more than politeness.
He grinned the grin of a crocodile and winked. The storm swallowed him in moments.
"What did he say? What did he say?" asked the others once he was out of earshot.
"For now," I replied.
I shivered then though I didn't know why. I left in a hurry with no intention of ever going back because I was sure of one thing with a clarity like polished glass, when the unknown man did return, I wouldn't get the chance.

50 Word Stories: Just Hanging

Motionless, we hung from the balcony rail not daring to move. A dare gone wrong, prank gone bad, the ground looked distant from the wrong side of the rails. What scared me most, though, was Sarah’s eyes. Wide and wild, all they said was jump. My fingers twitched. She smiled.


The shackles are empty, the chains lain strewn across the floor. The room is devoid of even Its memory. Where? Where has It gone? 

Moonlight filters through the barred window to glitter on the drifting dust mites: the air is stirred but not by you. The room stifles and you gasp; the twilight swallows the sound.

How many years has it been? How many fish head dinners have you brought for It? Will It thank you for that one small kindness? You can only hope so, as the door creaks, the floorboards groan, and knuckles crack.

Memory Lane

In an effort to relax and calm my mind before I hit the sack, I thought I’d listen to some music. On went the headphones and I perused my music stash. I decided on Michael Jackson’s Thriller album.  

As I boy I used to listen to Thriller on vinyl and remember that the best three songs were on opposite sides to each other and I had to turn the album over. Yes, younger readers, you had to get off your you know what to do that. Luckily no such exertion is now required as I’m laid on my back with an ice pack on my knee. Instead, I just pressed track four. 

And, yes, to my regular readers, I actually remembered the order, and went straight to Thriller itself. Next came Beat It and then Billie Jean. And all I’ve got to say is this: and thus almost everything else we’ve listened to since was born. God those songs are good!