Forgotten by Steve Bridger - 206 Word Stories - Bag of Bones Press
by Steve Bridger
‘How long can you sit still?’ Daddy asks.
I beam with pride, desperate to impress.
‘Imagine you’re posing for a picture,’ he says gently. ‘Still as a statue.’ He wraps an itchy woollen scarf around my neck. The wind blows low and cold through tiny gaps in the windows of the little wooden shack. I’ve never seen so much snow outside.
‘Like when Mummy had her scan. No matter how much your nose might itch or you want to scratch or cough. Do not move.’ Taking the axe, he kisses me on the forehead and disappears into the howling dead of night.
In my head, I play musical statues. Twirling and dancing. When the imaginary music stops, my muscles clamp shut. My breath is held. I sit motionless, even my eyes unmoving. I watch the snow continue to fall in silence.
Daddy said he’s coming back.
Everything seemed easier when I was little. A single chocolate bar could feed me for days. The frayed magazines would entertain me for hours. I’ve lost track of time.
Waiting for first light, I say a prayer as I did for Mummy. I stow a sharp blade into my boot and open the rickety door.
Daddy isn’t coming back.
Steve Bridger is a sleepy animator and illustrator originating from Essex in the UK. He’s entered into several amateur writing competitions, coming second in a short story competition and shortlisted in another. While by day his main focus is design and illustration; by night, he enjoys creative writing and attempting flash fiction. He currently lives in Cheltenham with some house plants.
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