'Flash!' Winter 2017

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: The Imaginarium


A short story written by Imaginarium House member, Hullabaloo22.

Chapter 40 (v.1)

Submitted: December 27, 2017

Reads: 66

Comments: 1

A A A | A A A

Submitted: December 27, 2017

A A A

A A A

A Surprise.

 

You couldn’t hide the fact that you were disappointed. In fact, from the look on your face, you felt almost betrayed. But I couldn’t say anything. I did not want to spoil the surprise, even if you had to feel slightly hurt in the process.

 

I found the small wrapped package in my jacket pocket. You must have put it in there when I wasn’t looking, slipped it inside there rather than put it in my hand. Were you reluctant to make me feel guilty that I’d no present to give you in return? I’m guessing that you did not want to make me feel bad but it could just as easily have been that you wanted me to feel I’d let you down when you were not there to listen to my excuses.

 

But I don’t feel guilty. Not one tiny bit. It was so hard to think of something to get you, to think of a gift that you actually might like. And then I had an idea, a brainstorm. The only problem with it was that you would not be able to receive my gift for a couple of days – to keep it a surprise I had to let you believe that I had forgotten to get you a Christmas present all together.

 

The earrings you gave to me are beautiful. I was going to call round or ring you to say thank you, but in the end made do with sending you a text. Sure I feel bad, but I could not face you and your disappointed expression again – I’d have given in and said something. I would have ended up spoiling your surprise.

 

The clock on the wall tells me I need to get a move on. I put in my new earrings and admire how they sparkle in the light. I put on a nice warm jacket, slip my hands into some gloves then wrap a scarf around my neck. I put my mobile to my ear, dial your number.

 

Be ready outside in ten minutes and wrap up warm.”

 

No, sorry. I can’t say any more right now. I’ll see you very soon.”

 

I disconnect the phone, still not wanting to spoil the surprise by giving anything away. I just hope you take notice and wrap up warm. Although we’ll be sitting side by side, and although it is not freezing it will still feel pretty cold. Another glance at the clock and I see that I had better get a move on.

 

As I pull my door closed behind me, I can hear it. The slow and steady approach of my gift to you – although as I’ll be there it is really my gift to us, I suppose. Clip, clop; the hooves get nearer, walking in time with each other. And now I can see them, the two gorgeous horses, dappled grey and so well groomed. Not a sleigh but an open carriage. I was warned when I made the booking that the sleigh was only available when there had been a very heavy fall of snow. But that is not important; the carriage will do just fine.

 

The horses draw to a halt and I climb aboard. It is only a couple of minutes journey to your house but during the trip I can’t help thinking how ‘right’ this present is. Everything feels slow, unhurried. The steady rhythmic sound of the hoof beats adds to the peaceful feeling.

 

As we near your house I can see you standing there. I see you look towards our approach and realise that I am here and that you will be too. I see your face break out into a beaming smile. As you climb aboard I give you a big hug which you return, and I whisper, ‘Happy Christmas! How could you ever believe I’d forget,’ and hand in hand we are taken on the ride of a life-time.


© Copyright 2019 hullabaloo22. All rights reserved.

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