300 Word Writing Challenge #8 January 2013
The winner of our quarterly writing challenge for January is writer E.J. Tett, known on these forums as Mouse. Each quarter, the Challenge is to write a story of 300 words or less, inspired by an image chosen by our moderators. The prize is a £10 voucher to be spent at Amazon. The photograph above served as our inspiration for January, and the winning story appears below.
Live Forever, Die Alone
I go into the chippy and watch the young lad plunge the basket into the boiling fat. My stomach rumbles as the potatoes crisp and, if I imagine hard enough, I can even smell it.
It’s empty now though. There is no lad. No chips. Everything’s covered in dust. Nothing to eat here.
I wander back outside and walk along the promenade. The wind blows papers and bits of rubbish across the street. It’s the only noise I hear.
Sometimes I wonder if I’ve forgotten how to speak. I don’t bother trying. What if I have forgotten? Not that it matters. There’s nobody to speak to but myself and I’ve never been a very good conversationalist.
I wish there were zombies. Or vampires. Or some sort of monster you used to see in films. Something I could hunt, or play with or, I don’t know. Shag. Eat.
I’m so hungry I want to cry. There’s nothing left anywhere. Nothing.
God, I wish the sun would blow up. Or an asteroid would strike. I wish aliens would come and take me away.
Please come and take me away.
I clamber over a wall, stumble across the pebbled beach and keep going until I’m waist deep in the sea. The sea is stagnant now, like a pond. The tides have gone. Everything’s gone. Sometimes I remember that it’s weird.
I take a breath and disappear beneath the water, breathing out, watching bubbles rise, and then I breathe in until my lungs fill with water.
I’ve done this before.
I didn’t die then either.
Photograph by Charles Knowles
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