Thursday 8 December 2016

Day 8: Small Precious Things by Sally Angell

He didn’t know what the sound was, jolting into the fuzzy warmth around his head. Was it the television, suddenly loud, or street noise in a public place?

Gradually, his surroundings began to make sense; the curve of the coffee table leg, numbers on the clock, a patch of green rug. And then he became aware of the presence that made everything right; his Lucy. She was twisting about on the sofa, doing yoga or something.

“I can’t br-eathe.” The wobble in her voice brought him back to reality. Lucy didn’t do panic, so something must be wrong. With muscles that didn’t work these days, and a blob in place of his brain, Jack couldn’t think. He just needed to drift off and never come back unless it was to normality again.

“Wake up! I’ve got to―” Lucy sucked her lips in, with a strange high whine, “get to the hospital.”
“You’ll be fine.” Jack shook off the sleepy blur. Why was this happening, just when he’d just managed to sink into oblivion? Nighttimes, when he was too wired, physically beyond rest and mentally grappling with the irritations of the day, the mantra repeated in his head.

“You’ve been through so much, Jack. You must get plenty of rest.” Actually they’d said it to Lucy, but in the warm aura of the overhead light he’d grasped at the lifeline. Sleep had become his Number One Fantasy, better than eating or even sex. Desire crept over him now, the softness of his senses yielding, giving his whole being what it needed. He wanted to stay there, saturated and undisturbed with colours from the flatscreen flickering through his lids.

When he opened them, Lucy was crumpled in front of the fireplace. Jack’s eyes blurred as he tried to rouse her. They had no curtains in here yet, and a blind sky pressed against the window. Outside was a black hole on winter evenings by four o’clock in the countryside. That was one problem. A tell-tale stirring from an upstairs room was another. And then there was The Road.

At the July viewing of the Charming, Secluded, Late-Nineteenth-Century Detached Farmhouse, with original features, set in the vibrant landscape of North Norfolk, the agent had promised the rough track would be sorted and surfaced by the time their contract went through. A housing development was planned a couple of kilometres away, Ms Lane said, and Lane and Smith were handling the sale of the properties. Those homes would also need vehicle access. So no probs.

In the January gloom, Jack held Lucy’s cold hand and tried to get a mobile signal.

 About the author: 

Sally Angell loves literature and writing, and is always aiming to develop new and original ideas in her work. Sally explores the truth and reality of feelings, the originality of language and the possibilities of words. She likes to write stories with contemporary themes, that also have a universal meaning. Her writing has been published in magazines and anthologies, and read on radio.



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