Creative Writing · writing

Time To Go: A Short Story

I have been here for what seems like one hundred years. The trees have grown unbelievably tall and the cars now require no human intervention. People keep taking pictures of me as they go about their days. Some of them say hello. Most of them walk past without a second glance. I understand though.

Until today, I have never felt the urge to leave this place. I have been quite content with my home and the exotic wildlife who visit me everyday. Today though, I want to leave. I want to see what lies beyond this place. I want to explore and meet new species of birds, other than pigeons and the mutated seagulls that dominate the skies. Today, I believe it is time to go.

My legs ache as I will them to take a step. They refuse. I try for hours to move even the smallest muscle but every joint feels too stiff, it is proving very difficult to leave. Every time somebody passes me, I try to tell them. I try to ask for their help but thus far nobody has offered their services. Somebody is coming my way now. I clear my throat and wait for them to become close enough to talk. It is a little girl, no older than six or seven. Her mother strolls not far behind her. The young girl spots me and runs straight for me. My heart soars as I see her bright eyes studying me.

“Hello Mrs. Hayes” the young girl says to me with a curtsey. Such manners. If I wasn’t already smiling, I would beam with delight. However that joy is soon overshadowed once again when I ask her to help me and we are instead interrupted by the child’s’ mother. Her eyes are studious as she comes closer.

“Lydie, would you like me to take a picture of you next to Mrs. Hayes?” The tall woman says kindly.

“No, she’s asking me for help.” I take in a sharp breath and almost refuse to believe it. This child has heard me. She heard me.

“Yes, yes. Good child and lady, I’m stuck and would like very much to leave this place” I continue, I let my eyes fall upon the woman standing before me, but her eyes are glued to her daughter.

“What are you on about?” She says, her eyes are drowning in worry. “Stop messing around, you’ve seen that before. You know better than to make things up.”

“Didn’t you just hear her? She wants to leave, she’s stuck. Mum we need to he-“

“Enough! Your imagination is too much Lydie. Do you really expect me to believe that?”

The girl walks slowly towards me. I can feel my heart breaking as my eyes fill with tears.

“Look mum, see? She’s crying. You’re horrible mum.” For a moment, the woman looked almost, sad. She took a long look at me and then up at the sky.

“No Lydie. Look. It’s just started to rain. That’s just a statue darling, they can’t speak or cry silly girl” the softening lady says reassuringly “the lady who it’s made to look like died a long time ago, she can’t talk”. She leads her daughter to me and knocks three times on my shoulder. The young girl wrinkles her nose and mimics her mother’s actions. The sound is like an echo chamber, every knock sending more and more ripples of sound that roll through my body. They turn around and in moments they are gone.

They are free to leave while I am imprisoned within this metal cage. It is certainly time to go now.


Let me know what you think of this short story! I have planned countless stories and haven’t finished them. This is something I came up with last night and have basically “pantsed” the entire short.

Hope it proved an interesting read.

Signed,

Jen X

19 thoughts on “Time To Go: A Short Story

  1. I thought the narrator was a flower up until it got to the line about the eyes filling with tears, then the pieces started falling into place. The uncertainty throughout was good and then the gut-punch of existential horror at the end was the cherry on top. Keep up the good writing!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Thank you so much for your lovely comment! I appreciate it so much, I’m so glad you enjoyed it! I haven’t finished a full short story in a while and really enjoyed this one. Thanks again for you kind words

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      1. Oh goodness you’re right! I think it may stem from the fact I have been writing academic essays and articles for a few years and have modified my writing to fit a more academic structure. I’m going to keep an eye on it from now. Maybe I need to do what you do and consciously make the effort to make my dialogue more ‘real’ haha

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  3. That first paragraph instantly hooked me!
    Honestly, I’ve got very little to say. It’s a great piece!

    The only thing I would say is this: Contractions.
    They can definitely help sentences flow better but sometimes it also makes more sense to use them. Such as when the girl addresses her mother and says “You are horrible mum.” or the statue says “I am stuck …”, etc.
    I think most people would say “You’re horrible, mum.” Except of course if you are trying to stress the verb!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That is definitely something I have been noticing within my writing as well so thank you for pointing that out. It definitely makes it flow better using contractions. Thank you so much for your feedback!

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      1. Hahaha, even in this comment you haven’t contracted even once! I do notice on first passes I NEVER contract, I honestly don’t know what is up with that. I’ve got to consciously re-read every sentence to spot the lack of contractions.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Oh goodness you’re right (see what I did there) I think it stems from the fact I have been writing academic essays and articles for a few years and have modified my writing to fit a more academic structure. I’m going to keep and eye on it from now on. Maybe I need to do what you do and consciously make the effort to use them to make my dialogue more ‘real’. What a funny observation haha

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      3. That makes a ton of sense to me. Yeah, just paying attention to it during dialogue will surely boost the realness of the conversation!

        Liked by 1 person

  4. Enjoyed it very much. Best wishes on your writing journey. I have the same issue with contractions, but for some reason I talk that way. When I write dialog I have to look out for that issue, unless the character talks in such manner. I understand you because I tend to be brief and concise when writing as well as speaking.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you! I appreciate you taking the time to comment on my little story! If you liked this one my newest story is a similar vibe.

      Yes I get you completely, I have since these comments actively gone over dialogue to make sure I add them where needed.

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  5. Such a cool story! I would love to know how Mrs. Hayes became trapped in that state. Was it a wicked witch or a mad scientist who put her in the predicament?
    I simply cannot abide the kind of parent who sees the need to squelch their child’s imagination. Perhaps I should feel sorry for them that they have no imagination themselves.
    Apologies if this is a duplicate comment. WordPress is not playing nice today.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your comment! I try to write my stories in a way that gets the reader to think, so it’s so lovely to see it has made you question why she is trapped in a statue form.
      I’m not sure there is an answer though, I have my view on how she became this way, but in truth there are many possibilities.
      Perhaps she died and her essence attached itself to the statue created in her memory.
      I agree with you entirely regarding parents who discourage their children’s imagination. Creativity is such an important part of human life especially for children. Maybe that’s why she could hear Mrs. Hayes and her mother could not.

      If you liked this story, I have others on my blog of which are similar to this, I like to explore perspective so if you have a minute maybe take a look 😊

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