• Romance

    I Will

    When I pictured my wedding day, I saw myself cloaked in white and crowned with jewels. I’d wear the pale blue drop earrings my mother gave to me on my sixteenth birthday, borrow my sister’s make-up, and buy some white Vans that I’d embellish with lace. The picture was perfect. But you know a picture can never always be quite perfect. Nobody believed me when I insisted I had only been drinking sparkling water that evening. I wouldn’t have believed me. But I had nothing to blame except my own stupidity. I kept twirling it around on my finger, captivated by the moon’s charm against the diamonds. Should I? Shouldn’t I?…

  • Story Snapper

    Still

    His eyes glazed over the lake like it didn’t exist. He had a sunken, pale face and shoulders that dropped so low you could almost visualise the wooden beam forcing them down. What had life done to him? He stared as though there was someone at the other side of the lake holding a card with an impossible equation written on it. The last thing I wanted to do was go over and talk to him. I came here to relax, to ‘get away’ from my own problems. He was an old man. He wouldn’t want me interfering in his life. But my feet were restless, my heart stirred for…

  • Childhood,  Family,  Friendship

    First Class

    ‘How long?’ I breathed down the phone. ‘Weeks,’ Martin’s voice choked back. The day after, at four o’clock in the afternoon, I popped around to the red-bricked house next door. Jenny was setting the table, and the smell of home-cooked cottage pie filled the air. She kindly put a teapot on for us while young Sophie played with her ice blue princess castle. ‘Does she…’ I asked, narrowing my eyes. Jenny shook her head. ‘We need to. But I just…’ Her cup shook against her saucer. ‘Let me help,’ I offered, placing my aged hand over hers. Her skin was so young. ‘How?’ Her eyes were lost, strong, and full…

  • Friendship

    Beauty

    Cocooned in an expensive, beige coat, adorned with enough gold to make a Christmas tree happy, and masked with the perfect colour palette for my skin tone, I almost laugh out loud at the absurdity of each tear that drips down to my Jimmy Choo ankle boots. Click-clack. Click-clack. No one seems to notice as I stride through the heaving crowd over the bridge sheltering the river. The water glistens as every ray hits it. Click-clack. Click-clack. The scars beneath my clothes. Imperfect lines burnt into my skin from the months of growing a baby. Boobs shrunk to the size of flying saucer sweets from the months of that baby…

  • Childhood,  Friendship

    A Drop of Kindness

    I heard the shouting through my bedroom wall one night. It was a woman’s voice. She sounded like how my mum did when my older brother had done something stupid. I fell asleep to the sound of her slurring words. The next night, as I was drifting off, I heard a small, soft voice. It was a girl. She sounded like me. Her sad singing, like a lullaby, sent me off to sleep. Smash. Thud. Bang. I got used to the shouting and crying after a while. I thought we’d have decent neighbours when we moved like our last ones. It was all Dad’s fault. He didn’t lose his job.…