Mrs Morelli

Mrs Morelli came into the living room while Martin was waiting for Yvonne to get ready. Yvonne had left the door open on the way upstairs, but her mother closed it over. She went to the fireplace and lowered the gas fire. A packet of Embassy Number 1 was in its usual place on the top of the mantelpiece, and she lit one with the chunky green lighter. Clamping the cigarette in her mouth, she fixed her hair in the mirror, squinting an eye against the smoke and pulling pins out then placing them back in the same places but … Continue reading Mrs Morelli

Playground

He returned to footpaths and fields he remembered from his childhood. Once upon a time, they’d played here, where adults never roamed. In those days, they’d paid no heed to the signs, or the warnings, or the fenced-off areas. As children, they’d believed themselves the owners of all of this. And perhaps they hadn’t been wrong. © Barry Lee Thompson and ‘Stories, by Barry Lee Thompson’, 2014 Continue reading Playground

Feathers

Tuesday morning. A couple of hours before his train is due to depart. We go to the champagne bar on the platform. He insists on sitting outside, even though it’s cold enough for scarves. None of the other customers are as foolish. “We’re hardy,” he says. I mishear. “Hardy,” he says. We eat croissants with butter, and salt-and-pepper scrambled eggs. The coffee – bitter, and strong, and too hot – is delicious, and seems to hold some hint of the smoky darkness of the future within its depths. Our conversation is easy, requiring little thought, on the surface, anyway: we … Continue reading Feathers