Very Slight Stories | Like short stories, only shorter.

'Darcy and O'Mara' is a novel by Arthur Cronin.
Click here to buy the paperback or download the ebook for free.

Tuesday, February 09, 2010


Winning isn't everything

   Dean took part in a cross-country race on a cold, grey November afternoon. He won the bronze medal. He didn't mind coming third because taking part mattered most, and taking wallets. He stole the gold and silver medals as well. Someone spotted him getting away with his haul, and the alarm was raised. He ran, and a huge crowd chased him. This crowd consisted of athletes and spectators. Dean knew there was a good chance that amongst their numbers were two people who'd just beaten him in the race. They'd want to win their medals back, and their wallets.
   His fears were confirmed when these two athletes emerged from the chasing pack. They were gaining on him. The only thing he could think of doing was to keep running, and he didn't have time to stop and think of a better plan.
   They caught him when he was trying to climb over a gate. The rest of the crowd were a long way back. Some of them had collapsed in exhaustion at the mere thought of running. Others ran with the enthusiasm of dogs let off the leash, but they had forgotten all about Dean when they started chasing a cat.
   He returned the medals to the runners who had beaten him in the race, and he gave them back their wallets as well, but they started arguing over who should get the gold and who should get the silver. The man who had won the silver in the race had been the first to catch Dean, and he claimed that this entitled him to the gold. Their argument descended into a fight, and this gave Dean the chance to get away with the rest of his loot.
   He started to put some distance between himself and his pursuers. A simple plan presented itself: he'd keep running until he was out of sight and then he'd find a hiding place where he could rest and think of a better plan.
   The hiding place he found was a shed, and the straw inside provided a perfect place to rest. He fell asleep before he had a chance to think of a better plan. If he'd remained awake he might have realised that his current plan wasn't all that great. After he had disappeared from sight, his pursuers would start looking for him in good hiding places. The shed would have stood out like a sore thumb.
   He realised this when he woke to find himself surrounded by the people who had been chasing him. They demanded the return of their wallets. He knew when he was beaten. He apologised for his behaviour and he reached for the bag that held his loot, but the bag was gone. He had left it next to him in the straw.
   The crowd knew what had happened. Eugene, the man who had come fourth in the race, had been the first to reach the shed. He must have seen the bag next to the sleeping thief and he couldn't resist taking it. He could have made his getaway without being seen by going out through the door at the back of the shed. Dean was furious because the man who had come fourth in the race had taken his bronze medal. And then he noticed that his wallet was gone as well.
   He joined the pack as they left through the back door of the shed. They saw Eugene running away through a field. Dean was confident of catching him because he'd already beaten Eugene in the race. He soon pulled away at the front of the pack, but he was surprised to find himself being overtaken by Henry, the man who had come fifth.
   It was Henry who caught Eugene and returned the stolen wallets. He gave the bronze medal back to Dean, but Dean felt that he didn't deserve it. He put the bronze medal around Henry's neck. This gave Henry a sense of achievement, but returning the wallets provided him with a much greater sense of achievement. Seeing Dean in handcuffs gave him an even greater lift. The only thing to console Dean was the company of Eugene in the back of the police car.

The Tree and the Horse
Henry Seaward-Shannon
A Walk in the Rain
The East Cork Patents Office
Words are my favourite noises




May 2005   June 2005   July 2005   August 2005   September 2005   October 2005   November 2005   December 2005   January 2006   February 2006   March 2006   April 2006   May 2006   June 2006   July 2006   August 2006   September 2006   October 2006   November 2006   December 2006   January 2007   February 2007   March 2007   April 2007   May 2007   June 2007   July 2007   August 2007   September 2007   October 2007   November 2007   December 2007   January 2008   February 2008   March 2008   April 2008   May 2008   June 2008   July 2008   August 2008   September 2008   October 2008   November 2008   December 2008   January 2009   February 2009   March 2009   April 2009   May 2009   June 2009   July 2009   August 2009   September 2009   October 2009   November 2009   December 2009   January 2010   February 2010   March 2010   April 2010   May 2010   June 2010   July 2010   August 2010   September 2010   October 2010   May 2013  

very slight stories

They Met a Bear
  They stopped in a small seaside town and they went for a walk. They met a bear.
  This is one version of the story. In another version, they met a sailor, and in this one they ended up being held at gunpoint on a speedboat and becoming unwilling participants in a diamond robbery while disguised as a cow, and sharing in the proceeds of that crime.
  So when they tell the story they just say, "We met a bear. He waved at us."

The Story of the Fortune Teller and the Alarm Clock
  A fortune teller threw an alarm clock at me. This story is deliberately lacking in details to mock the predictions of the fortune teller. Although she was right when she said she'd throw an alarm clock at me.

  One. Two. Three, the study. Four, a candle stick. Five. Six...
  Seven is missing, presumed dead. One has taken up the case, and two is helping him in his investigations. They both suspect six. Seven was last seen next to six in the garden.
  But seven isn't really dead. He's consumed half a bottle of whiskey and he's currently in the orchard, talking to a rabbit. "One of us is as boring as a gate post," he says, "and it's not..." He stops to count on his fingers. "No, actually it is me."
  Eight nine ten.

Debbie and his dog
  Debbie was sick of people mistaking her for a man.
  "Is your dog my parole officer?"
  She was sick of people asking her that too.

Very Slight Stories: like short stories, only shorter

More blogs about Storytelling.
Technorati Blog Finder

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?