Joe Carter by Adam West

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Victor sat on his bed. He looked out of his first-floor pod-flat bedroom window at the dual carriageway that was no longer a dual carriageway – not strictly speaking.
Electro-ped-cycles zipped. Freight trams glided. Electro-buses moved little by little, final phase commercial time drawing to a close – a fizz, a drone and a hum of noise.
I’ve sat here too long, Victor said to himself; just watching it move. I ought to get up.

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Literally Stories – Week 62 – A Plea

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Hello there, it is me again. Mr West is having computer problems. I sympathise, I really do as I always have computer problems. Adam’s is equipment breakdown whereas mine is mainly ability breakdown, although I do truly believe that they hate me. I take it all very personal and I wish I had a shotgun licence and the funds to be able to change my blown to pieces equipment any-time that it annoyed me. (Mr Presley and TVs comes to mind! As does a fried bacon, peanut butter and banana sandwich…And a few unmentionable situations that we shouldn’t dwell on. Maybe it is a good job Mr Presley didn’t have a computer for so many reasons!)

Anyway, I will continue. We have themed these posts in the past but this one will be a wee bit different. You may have noticed that both myself and Nik have been active with our stories. It has been an honour for both of us. But what we want to explain is that this is no incestuous, stories for the boys, type situation from our ivory towers. This has been out of necessity. We are struggling for submissions. The numbers over the past few weeks have been rather low. Both myself and Nik have had to go through the same selection process as everyone else and LUCKILY we have made the grade, if we hadn’t, well I think the tone of this article would be a little different. We need more stories. But, and this is a biggie, we still insist on the quality. If the quality isn’t there then we would rather close than accept anything that we think is below par.

So to an appeal. To all our writers, whether they be one story guys or multiple contributors, please look under your bed and finally tune those scribbles that we know that you have there. If you have any doubt with them, then put them back, they will hide the dust. But if you are happy, if when reading, you get that twitch in the pit of your stomach that says that you have something good, then please send them in. We cannot sustain the site without quality fiction. You have all shown us that you have exceptional work and we need to see more.

Are you ready for a tie-in!

That was an emotional plea and we could say that all our stories this week deal with emotions. (How was that for a rubbish link? I am good at rubbish links, just ask my fellow editors!)

I was up on Monday and wrote about very strong emotions that shouldn’t matter or even be there with my story Blood And Bigotry.

David Jordan touched on the much more recognisable love and humanity with Tuesdays heartfelt story The Other Woman.

Wednesday’s story was based on the true events of a horrific time in Welsh history with Nik’s beautifully structured and traumatic telling of The Generation We Lost.

My take on family secrets was up on Thursday with Passed On.

And to round off the week we had Nina Loard with more emotion as her characters came to terms with rekindled feelings in her story A History.

One tie-in done, one to go. I was going to look and see what I could find for the number 62 but decided against it. So to round off this post I will simply say, we have been here for 62 weeks and we want to be around for the next 62 weeks, so please have a look under those beds!!!!!

Hugh

A History by Nina Loard

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“Good luck.” Peter kisses the top of my head and walks out the door, turning his key in the lock. I sip my coffee, curled up in the leather chair by the window. Finally, the house is quiet. If I prayed anymore, I would pray. The job would mean more stability. Peter hadn’t wanted me to work when we married, but we are past that as an option. As much as I want to be excited for a new start, doubt rolls in and blankets everything. I’m not qualified for the position. I have to go through the motions to show him I’m trying. I hate wasting time. I drain the cold remnants of my cup and allow for one slow, arching stretch.

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The Generation We Lost by Nik Eveleigh

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All things bright and beautiful
All creatures great and small
All things wise and wonderful
The Lord God…

*

“I was told I should report here. What do you need me to do?”

“Shovels are over there, buckets are behind you. Dig or help carry it away.”

*

Each little flower that opens
Each little bird that sings…

*

“I’m sorry Mrs Jones but you’ll have to move back. They’re going as fast as they can.”

“I just need to know if Tommy is OK. He is OK isn’t he? He said he was feeling sick this morning but you know what they are like on last day of school…”

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The Other Woman by David Jordan

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Jason and I watch the morning news as we get dressed to go for a walk in the snow. There is a warning of a coming storm. The weatherman says a foot of snow could fall tonight.

“Did you buy gas for the–” I begin to say, but the last word won’t come to mind. I try inserting different words in my head to see if they fit: gas stove, Toyota, lawnmower-no, not the lawnmower during winter. My body shakes with frustration, and my head begins to ache when Jason suggests:

“The snowblower?”

“Yeah,” I say, “the snowblower.”

“It’s ready when we need it,” he says.

“Okay,” I say, and I relax again as we finish getting dressed.

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