November 2017

Sun, Nov 5 2017 02:45pm GMT 1
jkdavies
jkdavies
57 Posts
November. November rain. Last leaves and bonfires. Gunpowder, treason and plot. 30 days of November, 30 pieces of silver.

This month's theme is betrayal. 400 words maximum. Happy writing!
Thank you J.Net for helping out by posting this - much appreciated
Sun, Nov 5 2017 02:54pm GMT 2
healeymonster1
healeymonster1
63 Posts
Great choice of theme.
Mine's nearly ready!

Mon, Nov 6 2017 06:40pm GMT 3
Mat
Mat
67 Posts
Draft or two away, bang on 399/400. Been summoned back to work after my hissy - boss told me 'I should have hit him,' so not sacked...oh well, no more drafting.

....

My Own Personal Narration @ Barrowby Infants School, the Death OF FAWKES educational series, 400 words

‘Here at the gallows, and before his still living eyes, before even, his disembowelment, executioners raised the blades for a crowd to see.

The skyline darkened, men in hoods sharpened the instruments of pig iron complexion, the tools of the three stage English justice. Guy Fawkes groaned, and to the amusement of spectators, anticipated agonies of this most-favoured ceremony.

But for now the chopsmen laid the knives back down on the trestle, aside this traitor’s flank, and debated in their whispers the procedural order of intimate butchery. Steam of mankind rose from shoulders, executioners turned, carvery lust leaping as a flame from both of their very nostrils.

Yes, savage indeed, and savagery, some might say so, but why, we ask, class?

DO intellectuals refer to the political imperative, revenge..?

How in duty to our great and glorious nation, two executioners themselves conspired together in such irony, to slice, pop, and shove Guy’s testicles…why?

Yes, Eric..?

No, there were two of Guy Fawkes testicles, listen to the story properly, into his mouth because, anybody, he was a Catholic, thank you, and like your Maltesers if you say so – into his chasm, hole of Satan, mouth-hole Fawkes flickered treason, children, read your Bible. The serpent tongue waved as a Saracen’s banner. Or even, god forbid like the Vatican dome radiating sedition at its solstice, like this, now watch carefully my demonstration, with tongue and my hands, boys and girls.

Pay attention to the chitterlings, Klara…

But no, evidently, sadly this was not to be the case, please take the chitterlings away from me, thank you, the fate would never befall Guy Fawkes because as we now learn, he hurled bodily, with his wrists tied, hurled his red breast in bondage, from the scaffold, and was strangled at the noose.

He swung, or he snapped perhaps most certainly, and spared himself from life

and the sight of his own ripe intestines dragged in dirt, the taste of a mouth crammed goolies under lip, the sensation of cheek in blood, with foam to ears, trampled alive among cart wheels, among horses, the poor on all fours, brought down amidst loyal whores of the righteous Protestant family von Windsor-Bildenburg, God save the Queen, Ulster is British, remember the Alamo, uh hum. Yes, every word is true

that only the Papist’s corpse was hung, drawn and quartered, and why Daddy buys fireworks.

Any more questions?’

Thu, Nov 9 2017 06:48am GMT 4
Seagreen
Seagreen
2386 Posts
*bump*
Thu, Nov 9 2017 08:56pm GMT 5
Yo
Yo
181 Posts

The Smiling Face of the Friendly Fox.

Mummy said, "Never trust a fox."

But a fox was the only creature that helped me when she walked away to Hedgehog Heaven.

"Trust me, my prickly friend. You need food, you need water and you need somewhere warm. I can take you to a place where there's that and more. Trust your friend, Mr Fox."

I liked him, he was true to his word, we didn't have to walk far before he ushered me into a lovely, warm home. A castle that reached right to the sky, as far as I could see. When I looked for Mummy in the stars, I still couldn't see the top.

"Tomorrow I will show you, and if you're lucky, we may find some other prickly friends who've lost their mummies."

The next night, although I was very hungry, I awoke refreshed from a cosy day of sleep, nestled inside my magnificent castle. I dreamt of warm fires and incredible lights, of humans in scarves and machinery swirling and wooshing.

"All the fun of the fair, all the fun of the fair!" a human cried out.

A sweet smell in the frosty air greeted me as I was met by Mr. Fox and his welcoming smile. He wasn't at all like Mummy had warned.

He found me some scrumptious apples all covered in sticky sauce and best of all, a kind of bread with tomatoes and cheese and mushrooms and onions. There was so much to eat and I wanted to take it all back to my castle to keep me going through the cold nights to come.

"When the frost comes, you must search for food and bedding and somewhere safe and warm to sleep, until the smell of spring." Mummy had advised with worried eyes.

The next night when we got back to my castle, Mr Fox said "I've got a surprise!"

Inside were six prickly friends! And we all got on famously! They all loved Mr Fox too.

"Tomorrow, you're going to have so much fun!" he said.

That great big grin of his beamed wider than ever.

“It's the human Bonfire Night! And you're going to be right in the middle of it!”

He made it sound so exciting, and when he left, we all snuggled together dreaming of our friend Mr Fox and what fun the human Bonfire Night would be.

Thu, Nov 9 2017 09:00pm GMT 6
Yo
Yo
181 Posts
394 excluding title
Fri, Nov 10 2017 09:47am GMT 7
Penworthy
Penworthy
36 Posts

The Very Idea

412 years ago, thirteen key figures were responsible for one of the annual highlights of my childhood: Bonfire Night. My days of treacle toffee and parkin are long gone but their failed act of treason is still celebrated in shivery November evenings, the whooshes and oohs of firework displays, and the crackling of bonfires. Many of those who take part know little of the full story of the Gunpowder Plot which is why, several years ago, I sought to tell it as a novel. The producers of the recent BBC series were, they alleged, trying to do the same sort of thing but they failed.

The series went beyond filling in the blanks left by history and has, with its use of invention, grossly distorted the story of the Plot. Just two examples are that the first episode involved the discovery and execution of a fictitious young priest, included to illustrate a point – a legitimate device only if you aren't claiming to tell the full true story. The second episode had Catesby and Thomas Winter visiting the Constable of Castille in Spain to reveal their intention and request a Spanish invasion of England. In fact Winter went on his own to request the Constable's help in gaining concessions for English Catholics during forthcoming peace negotiations.

When I wrote my novel, "High Treason", I was keen to adhere as closely as possible to actual events and to invent only where it was necessary to flesh out characters or fill in history's unknowns but, even allowing for airtime restrictions, the BBC and the writer of "Gunpowder" have grossly misrepresented the Plot. On a lesser note, whereas I was anxious to avoid a "ta da!" moment when Guy Fawkes entered the story, the BBC series showed no such reluctance. I'll say nothing about the inclusion of an American actress to make the series more saleable to America. What is concerning is the thought that viewers on both sides of the Atlantic will accept what they see as the truth.

There is no comparison between my account of the Gunpowder Plot and the BBC's blandly-characterised one but theirs has received a major exposition whereas mine, having been rejected twenty times, will probably never see the light of day. We approached the same idea completely differently but, where the depiction of true history is concerned, I did it better.

(397 words)

Fri, Nov 10 2017 09:29pm GMT 8
healeymonster1
healeymonster1
63 Posts
Betrayal, I'm looking forward to hopefully readig a lot of entries on here through November.
This is my offering. It is inspired by a news story I remember seeing when I was 11, back in 1994. It must have made an impression on me as it immediatley came to mind when I read the opening post.
I have admit that as a beginner, I feel a bit uncomfortable with the content. I doubt it will shock anyone on here but it does contain violence and sexual swearing/content etc.

***
Amoxicillin 500mg, the packet was clearly readable in the moonlight. Leaning on the cooker top she turned the box over again in her long slender fingers. How had this disgusting thing happened?
He must have known.
Dirty bastard.
She squirmed with discomfort again, clenching her groin against that fiery itch. She scratched at herself as hard as she dared without tearing a nail off on the stiff fabric of her jeans. It was pointless, there was no relief from it. Every movement just brought more of that hot, slimy, irritation. She held down the starter on the gas hob. It’s frantic clicking hammered through the silence until a blue flame bloomed into life. It picked out the sharp angles of her face with an eerie blue glow. She scratched again, nails raking uselessly at the thick denim. Scratching at the rot he’d stuck in there with his filthy dick. Scratching at the infection he had planted. Planted right in the place where the precious seed of their baby was meant to grow.
Amoxicillin 500mg, she read it again and thought of that pompous old tosser, doctor Cassidy. Peering over the top of his glasses at her and asking; “And you’re sure Matthew has been your only sexual partner in the last six weeks?” Arsehole.
“Dirty bastard.” she muttered and flung the packet into the dark. It skittered along the tiles and came to rest in the corner next to her engagement ring. She grabbed the saucepan and started to fill it.
Surrounded by empty candle boxes, she stirred slowly. Savouring these last moments of calm. The last minutes before her fiance found out exactly what she thought of him, and that nasty, dirty, little thing of his. The saucepan crackled and popped slightly as the first bubbles of wax vapour gained enough energy for them to race to the surface and escape.
Matt was fast asleep, sprawled on the bed naked. His hands were behind his head, not a care in the world. Fucking prick. She took a last look at his gym toned stomach, his muscular chest, and his perfectly sculpted little beard. Vain selfish prick. Amanda’s eyes kept being drawn to that ugly little arrangement of flesh in his crotch. Disgusting thing.
She started to pour, the first splatter of wax made a hissing sound as it heated that soft, tender skin. After that there was just screaming.

Fri, Nov 10 2017 09:29pm GMT 9
healeymonster1
healeymonster1
63 Posts
400 words exactly.
Sat, Nov 11 2017 08:51am GMT 10
jkdavies
jkdavies
57 Posts
Hello all - just to let you know, I can sometimes see theWord Cloud so I am able to read your entries without signing in! (even if I can't always comment)
The Word Cloud are working on the issue, now it's the weekend I will chase up progress.
Thanks to Mat, Yo, Penworthy & Healeymonster for posting already, and looking forward to more exquisite betrayals in the rest of the month...
Mon, Nov 13 2017 08:55pm GMT 11
L.
L.
237 Posts

The Ecstasy of Betrayal

Maybe, it happened because we had fought, or because I had run out of reasons not to, or because it was a Tuesday, and what a shitty day that is, or maybe your anger had reminded me of my father. It didn’t matter anymore; all that mattered now, was the flame licking the spoon. When ready, I dropped the piece of filter in and it swelled up like my heart anticipating the rush to come. Rolled-up sleeve, discarded morals, and a recycled hairband tied around my arm, I speared the soaked fibres like I had done so many times before until you had convinced me that I didn’t need it, but the quivers of my skin reminded me that I did.

The solution rising in the barrel stirred up a familiar tightness in my groin I thought forgotten. Lying on my back night after night I had lied to us both—you inside of me would never satisfy me as much as the warmth of heroin inside of me did. You would never compare or be big enough to fill the hollowness that needed to be filled. Your love for me was a windmill, a losing battle. What I was about to do to you saddened me but I took comfort in the thought that soon you would be like Tuesday—you wouldn’t matter.

The constellation of old scars mapping the veins running below the skin showed me the way. I tilted the needle before its tip tore the flesh. Skipping a breath, I anxiously waited until a cloud of blood uncurled in the syringe and the visceral excitement of hitting the vein uncurled in my stomach. Licking my lips, I pushed the plunger and every promise I made to you, myself and the people in N.A. dissolved in a chemically-induced ecstasy.

A flaming sun rose in my abdomen, its tangled rays creeping up my spine, firing upwards until they exploded in my mind, a tantalising wave of warmth drowning me. The radiating light bleached the memory of your face into oblivion. I let go of you. Untethered, my body collapsed back into bed and into the embrace of my old lover. I’d been so stupid for ever wanting to give it up, but it forgave me for my indiscretion. I should take the needle out and flush the blood from the syringe. I should. I should…

Days clean: zero

(400 words exc. title)

Thu, Nov 16 2017 10:22am GMT 12
J.net
J.net
810 Posts

A Perfect Alibi

400 words excluding title

‘Remember now, mum’s the word?’ Lauren says with a wink. ‘What others don’t know won’t harm, eh? See, the best things in life have a secret ingredient, Nicks, and mine’s a little extra spice.’

‘Mum’s the word,’ I concede, except I’m not Lauren’s mum; I’m her friend, or rather her perfect alibi. I mean, who wouldn’t believe plain old Geeky Nicky? – who prefers a good read than a trip round the shops; who could tell a manager in five languages that Lauren turned up on time, or stayed the whole weekend, cross her heart.

With a flick of her dip-dyed hair, Lauren folds her shapely body into the sports-car at the kerb, a perfect specimen of muscle and white teeth at its wheel. They’ve barely rolled away before I reach for my coat.

As withered leaves crunch beneath my feet, I consider this maze of betrayal I’ve entered into. Do I feel bad about my own? I shake my head free of lingering guilt. The world couldn’t exist but for deceit.

The mellow sun picks out a silken web as if to highlight my meaning, its master deluder busily wrapping its latest dupe. I look down the avenue of trees, their autumnal display melting the hearts of lovers and dreamers too enthralled to acknowledge it is but a moulting cloak of amber and russet decay.

A squirrel runs across my path, its cheeks pregnant with gathered booty after stripping the ancient branches further of their flesh. And so it will continue until only a skeleton remains.

It’s nature.

A dog-eat-dog world of deception.

Of grabbing what you can while you can …

Except Lauren’s husband, James, deserves better – and he needs to know it.

Breathing in crisp air infused with a tang of spent bonfires, I stride on. One avenue leads to another, until I arrive at an imposing end terrace. A deep breath, and I tap out my arrival on the brass lion’s paw.

The door opens.

‘Nicole,’ James acknowledges my preferred name, while casting a glance up and down the street. ‘And Lauren?’

‘With … him.’

‘You sure?’ he puckers his brow.

‘Well, at mine ‘til Sunday evening if you ask her, but I’d say she’s hitting the motorway about now if you ask me.’

He stands aside; a flick of his head invites me in.

The door is barely closed before he seals his lips on mine.

Sun, Nov 19 2017 01:00pm GMT 13
jkdavies
jkdavies
57 Posts
bump!
Mon, Nov 20 2017 10:46am GMT 14
Ariejester
Ariejester
42 Posts

Here's my attempt for betrayl ;)
400 words (excluding the title), contains swear words

...............................................................

A Deliriously Deceptive Truth

Did I really just see that?

A glimmer of reflection, a shiver through my spine.

It could have been my eyes again, they play tricks on me. I’ve seen it before. Could it really be that?

He said I was wrong last time, told me I was crazy. Could I be crazy? Crazy in love, blinded by emotion. Maybe I am crazy, maybe I do see things. But then if I really didn’t see that, what was it? What could it have been?

She was pretty, blond, slim and everything I’m not. Perhaps I should dye my hair, lose some weight. Would he like me then?

He still likes to play in the bedroom, still enjoys the odd cigarette after sex. He cares for me, cuddles me and whispers sweet nothings. So maybe I am crazy, maybe I did really see things. Maybe he wasn’t fucking the next-door neighbour again.

Maybe I heard things too. The high-pitched scream, the cries for help. Maybe that really didn’t happen. The blood-stained clothes, the axe by the bed stand. Perhaps that was in my head after all. The bloody carpet, the dirt under my fingernails. I must be going crazy. He said it wasn’t real, clearly, I believed him. I had believed him, every day for three fucking years. Three years that bouncy blond had sprawled herself over my kitchen counter. Three fucking years.

Did he really think I was that naïve? Did he really think I’d stick by him after THAT! He was the crazy one, lusting in love, what a fucking prick. It serves him right now, divorce is the least of his problems. He can rot down there, rot in hell for all I care.

He said he loved me, it wasn’t my fault, I couldn’t have kids. We could have adopted, fostered. But no, he went and got her pregnant instead. I mean really, the huge bump was damn obvious. The look on his face though, priceless! I’d waited long enough. Well even though he was a cheating bastard, at least he gave me a child after all.

Reflection, that’s what I saw in the first place, a glimmer of reflection in the glass. Now the reflection’s changed. Now I’m pretty, now I’m beautiful, covered in her blood, cradling my new baby, would he want me now? Too late, as the spade fell against the cabinet. Too fucking late.

Mon, Nov 20 2017 09:50pm GMT 15
JimB
JimB
12 Posts

BETRAYAL

The gash on Simon's forehead dripped blood into his eyes, as he stared up at her, perched on the diving board looking down at him, at the side of the pool, where he had fallen. She looked rather amused, which Simon found disconcerting. Bill had punched him, and Simon had fallen hard against the gas-powered barbeque.

Bill was standing over Simon, ready to hit him again if he'd been foolish enough to stand up. Simon and Samantha had been having an affair for a month. Bill had found out about it from one of the staff. Bill was impetuous and never asked first, so he'd just punched Simon, and asked after.

“Are you having an affair with my wife?” demanded Bill. A question he should have asked before punching, but like I said, that's Bill for you.

Simon looked from Samantha and up at Bill. This was a situation he was surprised to find himself in. Not only had he slept with Samantha, the most desireable woman in the compound, but now he found himself at the wrong end of a wronged husband. Not at all a typical scenario for Simon, who was largely a coward, in love and war.

“Well, I don't know if you'd call it an affair,” he prevaricated, “a dalliance, perhaps?”

Bill laughed. “'A dalliance' indeed. You've both betrayed me. My wife and my best friend. How do you think I should deal with you?” he glared at the prone Simon.

Simon found this difficult to answer. He didn't want to get battered further, but he also felt he should answer honestly, to avoid any more complications.

“How about I apologise and grovel very sincerely, and promise not to do it again. How's that?”

Bill laughed again, with even more menace in his voice.

“How about I hang you from that diving board, with your own guts?”

A sharp peal of laughter rang out from Samantha, who had climbed down from the diving board, and was pouring her beautiful self into Bill's sports car, which had Jeff at the wheel. The engine revved, and they were away, Samantha's laughter trailing in the air.

Simon's blood finally reached his mouth. The metallic taste was a shock.

Bill put out his hand, helping Simon to his feet. “Drink, old chap? And I'll get you something for that cut.”

“Cheers, Bill. Nice of you.”

Mon, Nov 20 2017 09:51pm GMT 16
JimB
JimB
12 Posts
My first post on this forum, and the first thing I've written and shown to anyone for at least 10 years. Took about 20 minutes. 400 words.
Sun, Nov 26 2017 12:20pm GMT 17
stephenterry
stephenterry
3228 Posts

Betrayal

I stood with a chill wind caressing my limbs outside my wooden door on a cold November morn watching the hearse drive by, followed by a cavalcade of limousines.

Good riddance to the bastard who buggered me from an early age.

Uncle Ron.

The scars were mental. My suffering unnoticed or worse, ignored.

Ron could have who he wanted, anytime, no questions asked. Especially by poor peasant families, in rural England.

My home, a hovel by any standards, was testimony to the abuse rendered for the pleasure of being quiet when questioned by the authorities.

‘What’s up duck?’

I turned away. ‘Nothing, ma. Go back to sleep.’

Yes, I spilt the beans. For thirty pieces of silver, I set him up for a police raid on his drug business.

And I ruptured his femoral artery before they arrived. A knife in the groin while he was pleasuring himself. Two minutes to bleed out.

I was a victim. According to DI Jones, a pub mate of mine. No charges.

‘It’s cold. Shut the door, son.’

‘Yes ma. Go back to sleep.’

But, cause and effect. At least one of his crew would be seeking me out. I suppose the best would be a single head shot.

Tough life.

Not before I witnessed the funeral. Spat at his coffin, a single raised finger to his family.

Disrespect.

‘I have to go, ma.’

‘Close the door, son.’

Sun, Nov 26 2017 08:04pm GMT 18
jkdavies
jkdavies
57 Posts
You have 4 more days to get your November competition entries in!
Mon, Nov 27 2017 06:49pm GMT 19
Sandra
Sandra
2183 Posts

For Sport

From the doorway all that could be seen was the gleam of his cotton shirt and the whites of his eyes. The rest of him was in shadow. Unsurprising: boarded-up windows allowed only a thin-drawn rectangle of light. He’d backed himself into the corner, somehow levered himself to standing, the bulk of him merging into the shadows. I had to trust the shackles held.

Had to trust them too. I didn’t know why they’d sent me to fetch him. Didn’t know why they laughed behind me nor, when he saw me, why his teeth gleamed too.

The shape of his head, more visible as my eyes became accustomed to the gloom, was reminiscent of an Elisabeth Frink – stone Tribute rather than bronze Aggressor. Solid column of throat, sweat-varnished, black against soft white cotton.

I stepped inside.

Behind me, a collective intake of breath, part-suppressed.

His hands lifted slightly, a thin rattle of a chain.

He whispered, lips rimed with light, eyes lignite glittering.

My blood ran cold.

From behind me silence. Avidly awaiting entertainment.

Six of them had met me on the road. Side-eyed acknowledged my distended belly (and that I no longer skewered on some spurious prong of chastity).

Burk offered shelter. Easy smile echoed by acolytes.

I accepted, obstinately blind to consequence. Sure of naught but the nastiness of their intentions,

The shadowed, shackled, shift-eyed man waited. Another imperative compelled me to take a further step inside.

Whereupon, arms triumphantly upraised, he lunged. Double-fisted hammer encountered unanticipated bulk : immediate recoil. Superstition?

Metal-twinned wrists, fingers eagle-splayed, flew at me. Fingertips, exceptionally calloused, scrabbled for purchase. A symphony of rattled chains; guttural frustration whilst from without jeers and cheers and a staccato shout as I was sideswiped to the ground.

I huddled as he bestrode me, growling throat-harsh warning to leave well alone. His ankles were no longer chained; a sloppiness which smacked of sabotage because this hut had been fabricated from railway-sleepers to a strength which should have held him.

Now his strength pinioned me. One muscled calf pressed tight against my back, as I sprawled sideways on the earthen floor; the other prevented my turning.

In the doorway, uselessly chivalrous, Julian psyched himself to challenge. but before he could draw breath he was seized from behind. Pulled away.

Burk’s voice, semi-joking: ‘Don’t spoil the fun, Jules, else we’ll have to offer you as sacrifice instead.’

[400 words including title]

Tue, Nov 28 2017 06:16am GMT 20
Craig
Craig
22 Posts

The Big Picture

My god! Had he really been so stupid? So blind and so arrogant, that he failed to miss all the now painfully obvious tell-tale signs.

Dan looked at the message once again on Fiona’s I-Pad and shook his head in disbelief, his stomach was in knots and his mind was racing.

“Look forward to seeing you tonight sexy. Soo excited! Love K x”

Flinging the I-Pad to the sofa, Dan stood up and paced around the living room of his and Fiona’s tiny apartment. Dan thought they had been living blissfully together, but this was clearly not the case.

“You stupid, blind bastard” he thought to himself, as the temper and rage, all fuelled by jealousy, welled up inside him.

It was now obvious to him, what had been going on behind his back, frequent nights out with the girls, secretive text messages, coffees and catch up, the new desire to purchase fancy underwear; Fiona had always been a comfy cotton panties type of girl. Christ! How they must have laughed at him.

Grabbing his car keys, he slammed the apartment door behind him and headed to the apartment blocks car park. Taking the lift to clear his head and seek his revenge.

“K” could only be Dr Kilpatrick, the slimy new Dr that worked at the hospital with Fiona. They had been round to his house once for a dinner party and Dan could remember the address.

Knocking at Dr Kilpatrick’s front door, Dan was surprised, that he did not seem phased or shocked by Dan’s appearance. Before he even spoke, Dan lashed out, punching him full on in the nose, he fell back into his hallway with blood and snot tricking down his face, spreading onto his cashmere jumper. Following up with a swift kick between the legs, Dan bellowed “Stay the fuck away from my girlfriend”, before leaving Dr Kilpatrick prone on the floor with a look of terror and bewilderment spread over his bloodied face.

#

Opening the door to his apartment, Dan stepped inside and froze. Fiona and another woman, both dressed in fur coats were stood facing him. They both opened up their coats to reveal matching lingerie with stockings and high heels.

“Dan, meet Kelly-Anne, She is going to be sharing our bed with us from now on”.

Dan, looked again, blinked, took a deep breath, and then smiled, before adding “whoops”.

Tue, Nov 28 2017 06:17am GMT 21
Craig
Craig
22 Posts
First entry for a competion. 399 words not including the title. Enjoyed it.
Wed, Nov 29 2017 12:24pm GMT 22
Benjamin86
Benjamin86
173 Posts

Note to a Friend

397 words excluding title.

You betrayed me. You betrayed us all – your friends, your family; everyone who ever had the pleasure to know you.

We were oblivious. You told your brother you were leaving in the early morning, you made sure your car wasn’t blocked in the driveway. You left at just about the right time for a session in the glassy dawn waves on the west coast. But you didn’t drive to the beach – you drove to a cliff-top car park, knowing it’d be deserted until the sun rose.

You taped the door seals, the windows, the air vents – then you lit up glowing embers in the boot and sat down in the drivers’ seat as they consumed your oxygen.

I hated you for it. You, my best friend, who took my best friend from me. It was wrong, it was a waste – I knew you so well, and I tell myself that actually, you loved life. You loved riding waves, dangling hooks, sinking beers, charming girls. Now you’ll never do any of this again.

Six years on, the cascade of grief has waned to steady flow. I look at those days, and those months preceding them, in great detail. I analyse relentlessly the event that marked the zenith of my life. I begin to see signs – a few strange posts, things you said about future life that didn’t make sense. ‘I won’t ever get that old,’ you’d once said. I’d thought it was phrasing, but now I see you were deadly serious. Maybe I didn’t know you well at all.

Most of all though, it was that look in your eyes I’d see often, when we were bobbing in the waves, or three pints deep at the bar. You were watching life from outside, detached – a critical observer, not a participant at all. You found us regular folk, us blissfully unaware, quite amusing. It would play out in a small, knowing smile on your lips.

I missed all this, and while I was busy drawing lines through virgin snow, busy chasing my dreams, busy sinking beers and trying my luck with pretty Swiss girls, you left me. You left us, forever.

I wake now some nights pleased to have seen you, then mournful upon the realisation it was a dream. And I know it was not you who betrayed me after all. It was I who betrayed you.

Thu, Nov 30 2017 03:11pm GMT 23
Kate
Kate
1296 Posts
Warning ref language and content.
.

Downwards

You think you’ve hit rock bottom? You’re wrong. There’s always further to fall.

A roach, a tab, just a laugh. That’s what you thought, how you started. Something to lose the week and turn the weekend into a shit storm. But it’s not enough. Monday gapes into Tuesday and falls into Wednesday, so you sniff a bag to get you through the day, swallow an upper or the downer. Who knows, who cares?

Fuck the boss and his no shit attitude. Life’s too short and the days too long. But you’re way beyond the pills now; now you crave the sting of a needle under skin, the slow spread of liquid ecstasy that tips your head into a different reality. Nothing matters. Not the stripped bare home, the reclaimed car, the empty account. You just need the next taste to take the edge off unbearable and turn life into living.

Except you blink, and the jobs gone, the house, and you don’t remember how. But who gives a fuck. You never wanted to spend time with those stiff-necked arseholes, buried in their little jobs and their little lives. They didn’t get you. So, what’s next - you’re sinking lower. Lift Dad’s credit card, Mum’s diamond ring. You’d whore your little sister given the chance; hell, you’d whore your grandmother if someone would pay.

It’s not betrayal when they wouldn’t help. You asked, you begged, but they wouldn’t understand. The only hope’s left in that twist of paper, that lick of flame, and you’re saying words you don’t remember, telling lies, passing blame.

You’re crouched in a back alley in a mess of your own piss and shit with your best mate, your only mate, the one who’s falling with you, but you betrayed him as well. Those words, those lies, they’ve caught you and he’s got a knife in his guts, bleeding out all over the floor, and you know, it’s your fault.

And you’re almost there now. Not far to the bottom. The last betrayal. The one that cracks your mother’s heart and breaks your father. The one that’s a cord around your neck and an open window. The bottom.

You jump.

(364 words)

Fri, Dec 1 2017 09:08pm GMT 24
jkdavies
jkdavies
57 Posts

Thank you all for the range of entries and betrayals put forward, some great reading! A nice range of different betrayals and situations... My comments reflect only my gut reactions and thoughts on the stories, and I hope I haven't misunderstood any too wildly!

Mat:

I like the dancing in and out of imagination in this tale, bloodthirsty violence, politics and children's tales. The prose itself spits like a bonfire. My stand out sentence is "Steam of mankind rose from shoulders, executioners turned, carvery lust leaping as a flame from both of their very nostrils."

Yo:

A cute tale that was only going to end one way, although we hoped for a last minute escape!

Penworthy:

Betrayal at a personal level, by the faceless Them sits behind this seasonal tale of gunpowder, treason and plot. It prompted musings on how fantastical historical writing can be, and how historical fantasy writing can be.


Healeymonster:

Discomforting descriptions bring the reader right up close to this character. I loved "She held down the starter on the gas hob. It’s frantic clicking hammered through the silence until a blue flame bloomed into life. It picked out the sharp angles of her face with an eerie blue glow"

Revenge is a dish served bubbling hot here!


L:

Exquisite and yearning, and so sad. I really like that in the opening, we don't get a definitive reason for the betrayal, it could be because it was one of those (Tues)days. Also, the poignancy with which the love for the person never matches the love for the drug, but when "A flaming sun rose in my abdomen, its tangled rays creeping up my spine, firing upwards until they exploded in my mind", who could resist?

J.net:

A dreamy snapshot of loss and endings, book-ended by two different (or are they?) betrayals. I laughed at the "perfect specimen of muscle and white teeth", and nodded at the greater depth "Nicole," conveyed. Beautiful autumnal descriptions and musings, the stand out line for me was "And so it will continue until only a skeleton remains."

John Alty:

Clever, a double (or is it triple?) cross attempt with a fresh tone and vivid characters. I liked the domestic beginning, out for a curry and supermarket car scratches, and enjoyed the way my sympathies swung as each episode unfurled.

Ariejester:

To me, this reads like a lost soul, doubting what she sees is real. I like that we are left to wonder what was real and what was a reflection of the doubt - both believing him "last time" and being surprised that belief lasted for three years. You have created a vicious deluded monster here!

Jim B:

I had to laugh at Simon's bemusement at being found out after having a dalliance, and am intrigued by the word "compound" to describe this set-up, which hints at a story outside of this snapshot. And an unexpected ending too!

Stephenterry:

I like that the biggest betrayal, the buggering, happens before the narrative here, and that the revenge for the betrayal is so matter of fact and, yes, cold blooded. The first line lulls us into a passive watching state, and then the second line jolts me right out of it! And the last line is chilling in its implications.

tarquilla:

An interesting introduction to a naïve character and her dreams, and the contrast between the glittery ideas and the reality of McDonalds and arcades. I hope she has a happy ending when the coach arrives at its destination.

Sandra:

There's a word one of my favourite authors (Jane Gaskell) uses a lot, fleering, which describes this piece. Vignettes of action fleer out of the tense darkness.

Some lovely imagery too, "eyes lignite glittering" and "A symphony of rattled chains" are my favourite

Craig:

More musings on the theme of sexual betrayal. I find it interesting that Dan doesn't see that Fiona adding Kelly-Anne as a partner as a betrayal, where Dr Kilpatrick would have been. Surely both scenarios hint that communication & something else is missing in Dan & Fiona's relationship.

Benjamin86:

This has a nice pace as it takes us through the cycle of grief, from anger and denial through to acceptance and inner contemplation. A really believable cry out to the world, and paean to a friendship which was valued if not completely understood at the time

Kate:

I love this, the point of view and voice making the relentless downward steps immediate and inevitable. The killer line of "It's not betrayal when they wouldn't help," and the final paragraphs. A whirl of emptiness ending in down and out

So, to the results. We had several tales of sexual betrayals with twists, but I found myself drawn more to the betrayals of the soul and blotting out of life. My honourable mentions go to Benjamin86 for his tale of coming to terms with a friend’s suicide, and Kate for her unrepentant soul, hastening to death. My winner is L, I really loved the beautiful descriptions of her characters addictive descent.

Thanks again for all the fun I had reading! Over to you L for December!

Fri, Dec 1 2017 10:10pm GMT 25
Kate
Kate
1296 Posts
Congratulations L. Thanks for a great competition JK and the HM.

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