• Story Snapper

    The Bite

    There stood a red-bricked house, semi-detached, with a golden sheen licking its exterior. Common but beautiful. I daren’t peel my floral netted curtains any further. Someone might have noticed me, thought something of me. They always had. I wondered though…who lived there? Were they happy? Rich? Poor? Lonely? I tore myself away from my single-glazed windows, where through the netting, frost clawed at the glass and sat down. Only for a moment. My back creaked as I rose from the damp sofa. Bending down took several minutes, but eventually, I got low enough to turn the gas fire on. Click. Click. Pow. Crackle. Ah, warmth. I rubbed my hands together,…

  • Family

    The Break

    The bank holiday had finally arrived. Tap, tap, tap went my fingers on the steering wheel. Sigh, tut, sigh went my wife, staring at the unmoving cars. Groan, groan, groan went my daughter in the back. The sun glared with its unyielding rays. My son smiled at me as I glanced in the rearview mirror. His cheeks were rosy from the heat and his blonde hair was messed up from sleep. His bright blue eyes reminded me of the sea we were soon going to be diving into. The radio hissed. My wife fiddled with the dial. Been an accident…blocked up… find an alternative route…There was a snapping argument in…

  • Friendship,  Romance

    Beauty in the Beach

    I met Kym at AA. She was a slim woman, with sharp cheekbones, dark velvety skin, and a soft smile. She captivated me. It wasn’t only her appearance, though. Her heart was good. Flawed, maybe, but good. The first week I met her, she told us her story, and I remembered that AA was a safe space, a space to heal. I could hardly walk up to her and ask, “would you like to join me for a coffee?” Of course, a woman like her never would’ve looked twice at a man like me. I wasn’t unattractive. I had hair the colour of dry sand, swept to the side, as…

  • Friendship,  Romance

    Love Lock

    We ate cheap bread. We moaned about lecturers. We said we’d jog at the start of each term. We didn’t. We drank too much. We worked through the night. We slept through the day. We ran on medicine. We travelled home with bags of dirty washing. We kissed. We argued. We made up. We fell in love. We said it would be forever. We didn’t do well at the end of our second year. We fell out. We spent time apart. We made up. We flirted. We danced. We cycled. We raced. We got warning letters from missed lectures. We argued. We ate noodles. We drank coffee. We were worn…

  • Family

    Eighteen Today

    “In five more minutes our baby girl would be turning eighteen,” Jeff said, and frowned at his wife, “goodness, she’d be an adult.” “Why won’t it stay straight?” Sarah snagged the safety pin from the paper with her race number on it and fished another one out of Jeff’s rucksack. “Why do we even need numbers?” “To keep everything in order. There are thousands of people to organise.” Jeff cast a concerned glance over his wife. “Are you sure you’re okay? You don’t have to do this, you know. If you don’t feel up…” Sarah shot him a warning look. “Well, I mean…” He searched for the right words but…

  • Childhood,  Friendship

    Goodbye, Friend

    My brother, George, never had many friends. It wasn’t that he was shy, he was just direct, a straight-talker, and people didn’t like that. He knew when to speak and when to observe. He raised his hand in class when he knew the answer, but if a teacher ever picked on him at random, he’d say, “obviously, I don’t know the answer or I’d have raised my hand”. Teachers didn’t like that. They said he had an attitude. Anyone under the age of eighteen who says things how they are has an attitude. George never had many friends, but he did have Zippy. A treasured pal he received on his…