The Lollipop Man

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic

A short tale of a man and his dedication to his job. Eric Stadwell is a simple man who loves his role as Lollipop man, always ensuring the public are able to cross the road safely.

 

 

Eric Stadwell watched in awe as a black limousine sped past in perfect timing to an unexpected blast of thunder. A chill ran through him at the sight of the convoy with its long trail of mourners trying to keep up with the hearse, he was certain they didn’t normally drive that fast. But Eric had a job to do and without any further thought stepped out into the stream of cars cutting the procession in half. An elderly lady was trying to cross the road and it was His job to see her to safety. As he stood there beaming into the dark green Saab, lollipop held high and polished, the driver glared at Eric with such frostiness it made Eric look away quickly. He smiled courteously at the driver and waved the remaining half of the convoy on its way.

 

Eric was an oblivious conformist. Oblivious to all that was going on around him yet always following every rule made. His mother used to despair when he was young with his inability to take in the simplest of situations but quite capable of following basic rules. He was able to apply himself to any authoritative system but just couldn’t grasp the concept of common sense. He was simply unaware of the real world. Not an ideal candidate for a lollypop man some would say!

“Can you help me cross the road please” came a squeaky voice from nowhere.  

Eric looked down to see a young girl with beautiful long brown hair and big green eyes waiting patiently. She’d been standing there for ten minutes while Eric was casually staring down the street. He hadn’t been thinking at all. He rarely had thoughts.

“I’m sorry dear; let’s get you to the other side.”

And so in his traditional fashion, Eric hurled himself into the oncoming traffic bringing them to an abrupt halt. Looking towards the girl he felt somewhat disturbed and at the same time redundant. A plump middle aged woman, the girl’s mother Eric thought, had appeared from nowhere and was helping the girl across the road. Before he could say anything to the woman they had crossed and were walking down the street at speed. Eric was cross; it was his crossing after all.  

A sound similar to an aeroplane grabbed Eric’s attention and he frantically looked above him to see what was causing it.  It was loud and close but the sky was clear with nothing other than the occasional cloud. As he turning to face the traffic coming down the street from the shopping end of town, an unusual shaped car approached which appeared to be hovering off the ground. It became obvious even to Eric that this was no car. It was a single seated hovercraft.  

“How very bizarre” Eric pointed out to two policewomen who were just passing at that moment.  “Do you think you’d need a licence for one of those things?” he asked genuinely.

The policewomen ignored Eric and continued down the road in the direction of the hovercraft.  

“Well thanks for blanking me out," he grumbled to himself. They must have been too busy he assured himself.

An out of tune and way to loud melody told Eric an ice-cream van was near but again he was having difficulty seeing it. It must have gone down a side street.

Then it fell silent.

A man in his late 50’s with grey hair, grey beard and kind warm eyes was standing on the opposite side of the road. He was well over six feet tall. Eric crossed half way as usual to allow the man to cross. He was surprised to see the ice-cream van waiting patently at the edge of the crossing. He couldn’t see the driver though but there was now a small group of people gathering around the van. He wondered where they had all come from so quickly.  

The man with grey hair and beard started to cross but stopped as he neared Eric. He held out his hand.

“You need to come with me Eric.”

“Why, where are we going? Who are you?” said a now very confused Eric.

“Its okay, you don’t need to feel afraid. I’m here to take you home.”

  Eric felt completely disorientated and thought maybe he was suffering some mental breakdown. This was it; he was being taken away to one of those places that look after mentally sick people. He decided to go with the stranger and quickly looked back at the scene behind him. But the ice-cream van and crowd were gone. He was however stunned to see a woman standing there holding his lollipop. She even had the correct uniform on. It was quiet and he noticed a small bouquet of flowers tied to the railings where Eric had always waited. As he looked back a convoy of cars drove by. A black hearse led the procession.

“I saw that procession earlier today” Eric told the angel with grey hair and beard.

 


Submitted: January 14, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Fin Flanders. All rights reserved.

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Comments

D. Thurmond aka JEF

A good solid story with a warm ending, nice.

Thu, January 14th, 2021 7:48pm

Author
Reply

Thanks very much Thurmond.

Thu, January 14th, 2021 12:37pm

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