CuiousPages - fiction and nonfiction
CuriousPages - fiction and nonfiction
I wanted to scream or raise my arms to stop her but I was paralyzed. Then the woman had gone and all I could hear was the sound of fabric being torn, which grew louder and multiplied; the shreds of sound poured down on me like rain, filling my head as a migraine does. Then the storm passed and I was naked and cold. I moved to another tree, this one barren and leafless. I began studying its skeleton of branches and twigs and thought I could see them transforming into a picture, a three-dimensional line drawing whose shape, as it took form, began to create a feeling of nausea within me. I watched its form and thought I could recognise its message, but the nausea took over and I had to get out of there. I felt sure the picture was of myself holding a child amid a harmonious family and glowing with happiness, contentment and health, but I could not watch if for long enough to be sure; I cold not stand the discomfort of its formation. I felt my body was about to begin the convulsive actions of vomiting and I had to go. I turned and heard traffic noise, then the sound of seagulls circling overhead and swooping by. I followed them and was then back in childhood.
I was playing on a beach. There were two, indistinct figures sat nearby on deckchairs. Neither of them had voices, it seemed, for they were occasionally making mumbled noises like the barking of beached seals. Their faces, though, I could see clearly. My mother’s and father’s eyes looked out helplessly from the faces of these forms. Occasionally they glanced at us, and less frequently at one another, but mainly they seemed harassed by the fear of falling back down into the formless bodies that surrounded them, as though those very bodies were their graves. Sat around me were my siblings, though again they seemed not to posses a voice. I could stand the silence no longer and ran off to play alone. I felt the sand beneath my feet, first cold, then warm as I ran out into a more sunny area. I slowed to a stroll and felt liberated; I could see no more pictures and as I looked about me, I found I was outside again in the blinding sun. I glanced back at that yellow and green poster and resolved to never again eat chocolate.
As I walked along the street, there was a dim image at the back of my mind, a picture glimpsed from somewhere inside that gallery. It began quickly fading in the dazzling sun until I could no longer see myself misshapen by the burden of indulging in illicit pleasures. And then the image had gone and my mind was clear. I strode on, feeling the warmth of the sun on my face.
In the kitchen of 17 Misconception Boulevard, Sally Softly and the half‑dressed chief constable were standing beside the coffee machine. Above the gurgling machine, the muffled exchanges of the three visitors in the living room could be heard.
Sally was deep in thought about this man on the sofa whom she had deduced (by “scientifically examining the facts”) was Peter’s half‑brother. She then felt Roland Wise’s hand scurrying over the back of her leg. She recalled that look on his face as he got up off her in the living room—got quickly up off her and then sighed with relief. She pictured him with Peter on the golf course, both laughing about her. She shuddered again at the thought of their trickery, then grabbed Roland’s shoulder, said, “Right—we’ll start in the garden,” and pushed him towards the back door.
He seemed reluctant, “The garden—”
She tugged at his arm while warning him, with a playful smile, “We’ll have to be quick mind—”
His legs started to tremble, “But—”
She looked at his reluctant expression which appeared to be expressing disgust at the idea of having sex with her. And something about his expression incensed her even more than usual (—Right. I’ll get them both back for this. Wants to have a laugh about me, does he? Well, let’s see him laugh about this—). And she tugged more firmly on his arm, saying, irritably, “Come on,” and slipping his underpants down over his buttocks with her other hand as she tugged him towards the door.
Roland—holding onto his underpants—appeared to be somewhat flustered, “But, but—”
But she was not having any of this; she opened the door, snapped, “Get out there,” pushed him out through it (Roland still dressed in only his shirt, underwear, shoes and his chief constable’s hat—for he was still apparently unaware he was wearing it) and as they stepped out through the door, Sally’s smirk triumphantly returned at the thought of Roland’s marathon performance around the garden.

Fiction

Stories from a Leaking Mind

Stories from a Leaking Mind
A collection of short stories. Each of the eighteen stories are different in style but all feature a comic, thoughtful and poetic approach to this exploration of the striking inner worlds of these memorable characters. Read more>>

Andrea Segovia Loses Control

Andrea Segovia Loses Control
Short story. Andrea is addicted to correcting other people’s mistakes, and when she moves to London to meet her new boyfriend, she finds that she has plenty of work to do. Read more>>

The Gallery

The Gallery
Short story. A woman stumbles into a gallery and finds pictures of her own life displayed there. Read more>>

The Price to Pay

The Price to Pay
Short story. In a moment of recklessness I begin overspending which soon attracts the attention of a shady character who watches over me. I then discover the shocking price I must pay. Read more>>

Choosing the Right Drinks

Choosing the Right Drinks
Short story. How do we choose to spend our life? And is our chosen path of any value? Joseph is dying and is troubled by the choices he made in life. Clemency, his nurse, has no answers for him but his turmoil causes her to re-evaluate her own life. Read more>>

My Constant Companion

My Constant Companion
Short story. A man is being pursued by his shadow—or so it appears to him. Read more>>

The Wimpering Beach

The Whimpering Beach
Short story. In a tropical paradise, the boundaries are blurred between love and terrorism—but then perhaps those boundaries are blurred everywhere. Read more>>

Irresistible Temptation

Irresistible Temptation
Short story. An old man offers me some simple advice which I ignore and this begins the adventure of my life. Read more>>

A Substitute Passion

A Substitute Passion
Short story. Many Truman is accident prone when wearing stiletto heels. She decides to wear them one more time and finds this unleashes from within her a shocking passion. Read more>>

The Armchair Ballet Dancer

The Armchair Ballet Dancer
Short story. To the outside world, Benjamin Clark seems unusually happy, but this only masks his inner turmoil as he struggles to live with the consequences of a single reckless decision he made at the age of eighteen. Read more>>

Fiction Archive

Fiction Archive
A selection of classic fiction by past authors, including short stories, longer fiction, and poetry. Read more>>

The Tragedy of Perception

The Tragedy of Perception
Full-length novel. In a town called Perception, the citizens are ruled by an extravagant madness. The novel is a comic allegory about communication problems. Read more>>

If only Cats could Speak Japanese

If only Cats could Speak Japanese
Short story. Lorna Glover does not know whether her boyfriend has any feelings for her, so she decides to consult the Emotional Detective Agency to try to solve the riddle. Read more>> 

Craig Stemford's Imprisonment

Craig Stemford's imprisonment
Short story. Craig Stemford’s life seems like a prison sentence. He meets a new girlfriend on the internet, secretly hoping that she might set him free, but instead he only gains a deeper insight into his sentence. Read more>>

Samuel Pam

Samuel Pam’s Salvation
Short story. Samuel’s life is plagued by strangers who whisper to him unwanted messages of a sexual nature. Read more>>

Shorter works

Shorter works
Short pieces of fiction, poems, prose poems, nonsense poems, or other short pieces of writing that don't seem to fit anywhere else. Read more>>

The Beckoning Precipice

The Beckoning Precipice
Short story. A doctor, who is racked by guilt, is contemplating suicide, but are his misdeeds imaginary? Read more>>

Daniel and the Wine Stain

Daniel and the Wine Stain
Short story. In one way or another, we are all disabled. Daniel’s disabilities are not immediately obvious, yet when he is forced to face them, he becomes overwhelmed. Read more>>

The Betrayal of Jack Baynes

The Betrayal of Jack Baynes
Short story. Ray Herring recalls his school days and the betrayal of his best friend, Jack Baynes. Read more>>

Thinking Inside the Box

Thinking ‘Inside the Box’
Short story. A burden is thrust upon me, in the manner of a cryptic message. Read more>>

A Martial Artist Meets his Match

A Martial Artist Meets his Match
Short story. Jack Hutton was a martial arts champion. But nothing in his training had prepared him for his life’s ultimate challenge, which began the day Maryanne moved in with him. Read more>>

Trout with Celery Stuffing

Trout with Celery Stuffing
Short story. I attempt to eat a simple meal in a restaurant but find myself getting deeper and deeper into trouble and unable to negotiate my escape. Read more>>