Doing what you love on International Women’s Day | A short story

Photo by Louise Butterworth

Today we celebrate the ladies. And to honour International Women’s Day I am paying attention to myself, or more importantly, the reason I was put on this crazy little planet.

Because it’s easy as a creative to get caught up in the daily grind of trying to make money and chasing every little job that’ll pay the bills, all the while forgetting the reason you chose to be freelance and living the life that comes with not having a regular income and a 9-5.

So here’s to writing fiction. And this woman trying to get back on track…

Adam’s Ale

Billy’s feet padded across the tiles, slapping each time they hit the raw surface. Screams and yelps bounced off the walls in a continuous cacophony of playtime. It felt good to be surrounded by a symphony of happiness. Even if he couldn’t feel it.

Billy stood at the deep end. Should he enter the water with a dramatic splash or should he edge in silently, reticent until the very end? He lowered his toe into the water and the rest of him followed.

Slowly, Billy glided through the blue, eventually coming to a definite stop on the tiles at the bottom. His hair feathered up and down as his body balanced in the water. He wondered if he should open his eyes. A dreamy watercolour vista seemed the perfect adieu. His eyelids fluttered open and he focused through the fog. A palette of blue tinted limbs rippled into vibrant polyester swimwear and white frothy bubbles – a lullaby of mellow images that would soothe him to sleep.

But Billy was always looking for more. His brain couldn’t help focusing on life’s finer details. The things everyone else chose to ignore.

Today’s detail was the adolescent body of Kirstie Forsyth; pressed up against a blue grey tile that formed the back fin of a dolphin that was arranged to appear as though it was leaping from the water and onto the poolside. Billy watched Kirstie against the dolphin fin, with Adam Morton’s hand clenched tight around her breast. His other hand lost within the crotch of her baby pink swimming costume.

Billy tried to push against the tiles. The surface beckoned more than this perverted watery end. But his feet had nothing to give. The tiles just smoothed across the skin as his toes gracefully curled and drifted along their surface.

As Billy slipped into the abyss the carnal image would be etched on his eyes for all eternity.

21 Comment

  1. Elise says: Reply

    Such a short story that conveys so much! You should definitely give yourself more time to write! You are talented!

    I must know, does he enter the water with the intention of drowning? I can’t work it out. Or is this one of those ambiguous things that I will never know?

    1. Aw thank you Elise, that is such a kind thing to say, and such words of encouragement are very very welcome! Ha I do often like to write a story with lots of ambiguity, and I don’t always decide for myself what the next step is or the original decision was. In this case I do think he was going in there to drown, but at the last minute he changed his mind… it’s the ultimate in sod’s law that he didn’t really get a choice when it came down to the last few seconds though… 😉

  2. Now that was fun to read

    1. Ah thank you for saying so, I am glad it provided some entertainment 🙂

  3. Very nice short story. I see this as an amazing allegory to life. And depending on our own experiences, we are free to draw our inferences and nuances of the story. Love the mystique!

    1. What a lovely compliment, thank you! I do often try and write something that’ll get my readers thinking, so I am very pleased to hear your interpretation! 🙂

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