Last year I entered a micro-fiction competition where you had to write a story of 300 words or less. 300 words really isn’t many and I blogged about how I struggled to get my piece the right length.
Needless to say, I didn’t win. I still quite like my piece though and Carole’s post today over on Carole’sCharactersreminded me of it and prompted me to post it.
Heather ground her teeth as she stared through the window watching the playground fill with hyperactive children. She burned with jealousy.
“Come, Heather.” His harsh voice made Heather’s scowl deepen.
“Yessir.” Heather backed away and flopped into a cheap plastic seat, sticky in the heat. She wished again that skirts weren’t compulsory uniform.
“There’s no point being like that. Here.” A large leatherbound notebook dropped on her desk. “Do your diary before dinner arrives.”
Heather opened the notebook at the next clean page and glowered. Stupid diary. Stupid stupid stupid diary. She slammed it shut.
Her teacher pulled the blinds across the windows just before the sun burst out from behind the clouds.
Heather closed her eyes for a moment then reopened the book. She rummaged through her pencil case for her brightest red pen, removed the lid and contemplated the empty page.
“Go on,” he said. “It’ll help.”
Growling under her breath, Heather began to draw.
Angry red circles covered the page. All different sizes, each surrounded by short lines. A thousand blood-stained sunshines.
Heather pressed harder and harder. Her movements jerky. Violent. Eyes squinting in concentration. A hand on her shoulder stilled her motions and slowly she realised her pen had torn through the paper onto the page below.
“Dinner’s here, Heather. That’s enough for today.”
Heather ate in silence and waited for her classmates to pour in from their break.
Home time. Heather waited for everyone to leave before slipping into the stationery cupboard and pulling on her full body suit and mask. She hated being different. Hated her diary. Hated her suit.
Most of all she hated the sun. The sun that made her skin burn and flake. The sun that forced her to stay inside. She felt like a monster.
Maybe she was.