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  • Writer's pictureThe English Translator

Beware of what lies below

Updated: Apr 11, 2021

Writing prompt number 10 – 15 December 2020

See previous posts for the whys and wherefores. I scratched my head a lot for this and my 15 minutes ran out pretty quickly. Still, it's the thought that counts, isn't it?

Year: The wind whistled down the lane creating small eddies. Swirling leaves gathered crisp packets and bus tickets in their wake as they made their way through the alley. Dancing madly, they flew through the air before coming to rest against Laura’s prone body. Lying motionless at the foot of the wall, Laura gave a small groan. Gingerly, she moved her fingers, crying out as pain like molten lead shot through her hand. She lay still once more, preserving her meagre energy. Minutes passed. A low sobbing sound filled the air. Nothing stirred and time became meaningless. The previous urgency she had felt had disappeared like a puff of smoke. Lifting her head again, Laura saw a small boy dressed in red watching her from the top of the lane.

Desperation made her brave and she called out to him for help. He cocked his head on one side, trying to work out what to do. Slowly, he made his way towards her. Laura could sense his mistrust. Knowing how it must look and hoping to reassure him, she plastered a smile on her wrecked face but could only produce a grimace. The boy stopped and seemed to be waiting. Laura thought hard. “It’s okay”, she said. “I just need a little help. Is your mum around?” The boy nodded and pointed back up the lane. “Can you go and get her? She’ll know what to do.” Silently, the boy turned on his heel and ran to the end of the lane disappearing out of sight. Laura attempted to move her hand once more. The pain had lessened somewhat and wriggling around, she finally managed to pull herself upright. She lay her throbbing head against the limestone wall. It felt rough and cool against her cheek but reassuringly solid.

Thinking back, she went over the events of the day. First, a party at Graham’s, back to Lisa’s for a few, a bevvy at Ginny and Allan’s and then off home to spend New Year’s Eve with mother. She knew she shouldn’t have worn these heels. The backstreets were full of uneven flagstones, so it was only a matter of time before she took a tumble. And what a tumble it was; flinging her hands in front of her to break her fall, she heard the bone snap in her wrist before she felt it. What a way to end the year, she thought as a tear trickled down her face.

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