365 Ficlets – #144 ~ “A Certain Point of View”

“Who is that man, Daddy?”

The little boy was pointing at the famed statue of Bonhoeffer, the one that had been raised in Berlin only two years after the Abwehr successfully ended World War Two by assassinating Hitler. Now, sixty-five years later, I was curious to hear how this young father would explain why Dietrich Bonhoeffer holds an honoured place in our history.

“Well, son, that’s a statue of a great man.”

The little boy stopped for a moment, his finger by his mouth, his face a picture of childish confusion.

“But Daddy, how do you know that?”

And now the confusion was on the father’s face. He was grappling with how to explain.

“Well, have you learned about the war in school?”

The boy nodded.

“And you heard how the people who took our country into that war used the fact that we were at war to secretly do many bad things here and in other nearby countries? Well that man was one of the people that stopped those bad men. He was a priest and his wisdom helped to justify what was done.”

I smiled; it was well explained.

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365 Ficlets – #143 ~ “Mandarins After Dinner”

“What are we going to do about this Edgar?”

“What do you mean?”

“This idiot Chamberlain really thinks that this agreement he has made with the Austrian Corporal, Mussolini and Daladier will stop what is really going on. It’s delightful really that the Prime Minister of our country is still someone that believes in honour, but if what we are hearing from our men on the ground in Berlin, Hamburg and Munich is true then this is only the beginning.”

Edgar nodded, pushed himself up in his chair and leaned forward, elbows on his knees.

“So the intelligence coming in is reliable, Tom? We’ve been hearing this scare mongering for a while and then the politicians come back from summits with their treaties and tell us that it’s not true.”

“What I am about to tell you, Edgar, it’s shocking, but the time has come to share this information at the higher levels and you are cleared Top Secret. I checked before I invited you to dinner, it bears mentioning that this is an official approach from the director of the Foreign Service.”

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This Ficlet was inspired by the front page of Wikipedia for the 29th of September 2008, in English. The Article was from the “On This Day…” section from the 29th of September 2008 and concerned The Signing of The Munich Agreement on September 29th 1938; you can find out more here.


365 Ficlets – #142 ~ “White Line Fever”

The long drive home was becoming longer and longer as the last can of Red Bull wore off. Joel opened his window and started slapping his chest in time with the loud fast music (Clutch of course) coming from the stereo.

The string of orange lamp posts stretching off towards the main junction for Birmingham, like a string of flourescent beads. He was a few miles from Birmingham and that meant there was only an hour of driving left ahead of him if he kept his wits about him and his right foot down.

He looked over his shoulder into the back of the car to see Lottie and their little daughter Rose soundly asleep, the cutest of smiles on both of their faces. How were they sleeping through the music? He needed to rest; he needed to put their safety ahead of his desire to get home. In his heart he knew that there would be trouble if he kept driving, that he would not be able to stay awake. He could stop and get more Red Bull.

BANG

He could not hold the steering straight; there had been a blowout. At least he was awake…

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365 Ficlets – #141 ~ “Why”

“It eludes me.”

“I know that, that’s one of the things that I really like about you.”

“Why would they do this? I mean it doesn’t make any sense.”

I nodded and smiled. Even faced with the reality of it all and even with all of her intelligence and education it was her feeling for humanity, or rather what is good about humanity, that came to the fore.

“Look, I understand how this upsets you and how it confuses you in equal measure, but I need you to dig in right now. We will never understand this, but we do have to prepare the public for it as if we do. You know?”

She nodded, and headed out of the office. As my door started to close I could hear her delegating tasks and asking for work from the team. She was going to be okay for that one day, but then I was going to have to have some answers for her.

I picked up the photographs from my desk and tried to make myself look at them again. One hundred and seventeen dead, another two hundred plus injured, and for what? I needed to have an answer when Sheena asked me again.

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365 Ficlets – #140 ~ “Mercy?”

“So let me get this straight, you are going to walk into his office, shoot him in the face, take the USB key from computer and walk out?”

“Yeah.”

“Don’t you think that’s a bit risky? I mean won’t his people hear the gunshot? Even if they don’t, isn’t there a good chance someone will find his carcass and raise the alarm?”

“Yeah.”

“Shouldn’t we talk about alternatives? Maybe a diversion and I go in to steal the USB key covertly, you know go for the subtle approach?”

“Nope.”

“What do you mean ‘Nope’?”

“I mean, nope.”

“I give up, you have a deathwish, not to mention the psychosis that planning to casually murder someone suggests. Good luck Paden, I can’t be a part of this. I’m sorry.”

He nodded, spat at his feet and pulled the brim of his hat down. He remained silent for just a few more seconds and then;

“Ok then. You’d best scoot.”

“I can’t persuade you to leave the cold blooded murder then?”

“He killed my wife, my mother and my dog. Shooting him once in the face is kind compared to what I’d like to do to him, you know?”

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365 Ficlets – #139 ~ “Street Clothes”

She watched him, sitting on the edge of the bed as he always did, buttoning his shirt and then tying his tie. There was always a point, as he put his street clothes back on, at which he became all business and the man that she had been getting to know each week for seven months went away again.

She had always wondered if this was the way that her regulars rationalised that they were visiting her when their managers thought that they were playing squash or golf, or dining a customer or meeting a prospect to try and close a very different kind of deal. She knew that she had her own tricks, her own mental sleight of hand that helped her forget that she was not just having sex because she wanted to.

She was not developing feelings for him; that had happened once when she started out, but she learned from that experience. She had been hoping that he would make it easier on her, allowing himself to be happy with what he was doing. Just smile at her before he left, instead of the cold face that offered her the cash…

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365 Ficlets – #138 ~ “Homecoming”

He was leaning over the rail of the balcony when she came out of the shower. Though she was just barely wrapped in a towel, wearing only her necklace, she wandered to the door and ran her finger down his back. He turned and put his back to the rail, back against it.

“Ah, there you are. Come here.”

He smiled as she started to walk towards him, and reached out to take her hands. She let the towel drop and clothed herself in his arms. He nuzzled into her neck, planting kisses between her nape and the lobe of her ear, and then he whispered;

“Do you like the town of my birth then? The Rome that never quite was, this odd little town in Provence?”

“You were born here in Avignon? I did not know that!”

He spun her to face him, grasping her upper arms in his strong hands. He allowed himself a moment to look at her body, to appreciate the perfection and then his eyes came to rest on the key nestling between her breasts on her necklace. He kissed her, wrenched the key from its chain, and flipped backwards over the rail.

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This Ficlet was inspired by Thom Ryng’s suggestions of a key, Avignon and a kiss as item, place and activity from the Wednesday poll on my Livejournal.


All Praise The Saucer of Love!!!

It’s entirely possible that I am playing Too Much Spore(tm), but I had to share this with y’all…

Spore Religious Land Vehicle - LoveSaucer - created by Maleghast

It’s for spreading LOVE! 😉

.
EOT


365 Ficlets – #137 ~ “Home Service”

She tried to focus on the comforting tones of Radio 4 as she picked her way through the wardrobe that had stood unused for five weeks. She had walked up to it so many times, but in the end she had not been able to even open it before.

“The Prime Minister today answered questions…”

It had been a good idea to leave the radio on loud enough that she could hear it in here. When he was around there had always been the sound of the Home Service, as he had enjoyed calling it; at least since the kids had moved out and taken their ‘dreadful noise’ with them. Truth be told she missed their music almost as much as she missed him insisting on the radio…

She steeled her nerve and reached in for the first hanger.

It was his grey Harris Tweed. The one he had bought to still have a smart daytime jacket after he retired. It seemed a shame for it to go straight to the Oxfam Shop. For a moment she wondered if her soon-to-be son-in-law would want it; he was quite smart. Certainly her own son, Gerald, would not have any use for it.

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365 Ficlets – #136 ~ “Chronophage”

“Rick, you’ve been staring at that thing for twenty minutes. It can’t be that interesting!”

Rick flinched, his attention broken for the first time since he had started counting the pendulum’s swings twenty-one minutes before. He sighed; clearly Don was not going to give him long enough to work it out tonight.

“I nearly had it. If you hadn’t interrupted me I might have got it in a few more minutes.”

Don shook his head and smiled a wry, indulgent smile;

“Rick, if you want to know what pattern Taylor encoded into the damn Chronophage why don’t you just ask him? He’s probably bursting for someone boring enough to ask him.”

“Don, do you think that I would spend thirty to forty minutes every day counting pendulum beats, by the minute, at different hours of the day and night if Taylor was telling people who simply asked? It’s his big secret! Come on, let’s get a drink.”

As they slouched away a shadow moved and then gave birth to a slight man who did not look even remotely as though he belonged in Corpus Christi College.

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This Ficlet was inspired by the front page of Wikipedia for the 22nd of September 2008, in English. The Article was from teh “Did you know…” section from the 22nd of September 2008 and concerned The Corpus Clock, also known as the Chronophage; you can find out more here.