Posts Tagged ‘wrexercise


Wrexercise #1

Writing exercises, in which I randomly generate rules for some constrained writing.

Exercise: Write for at least 200 words about a death, a payment, and a window.

I will remember his fingers for as long as I live. Short, stubby little things they were with days of dirt trapped under the gnarled and yellowed nails, gripping tightly that pristine five pound note. The paper shook in the night air, through more through the chill of its owner than of the attentions of the breeze.
I worked at a drive-through, though the man had made it a walk through and I was notified of his presence by the acrid tang of stale sweat and the deep, crackling breaths he took. I found out later he was no older than forty, though he seemed at the time no younger than sixty. He wore an overcoat which had long since seen better days, with a yellow scarf tucked behind his overgrown beard of grey. Tired eyes regarded me without agenda as he requested a Double Fillet Meal with Crunchy Fries and a large Sloshee as his drink.
It was closing on eleven o’clock, just another five minutes and we’d close so I could go home and play games online. I resented him with his dirty hands pressed against my window, resented that additional minute I’d now have to stay behind to clean the glass again. Why couldn’t he have got his meal earlier in the day? My eyes narrowed on that crisp new five pound note in his hand; he’d stolen it I was sure, or maybe found it on the street, dropped by some drunken reveller somewhere.
I nodded, and gritted my teeth as he leant onto the worksurface at the window, coughing quietly as I went to fetch his food. More cleaning. I chose the coldest food I could find as an act of payback and dropped it into a paper bag for him, exchanging a muttered cruel joke with a colleague as I went back to hand him his food and collect payment.
He was laid slumped on the worksurface, his eyes peaceful but glassy, his noisy breathing still and silent now. His arm was outstretched as though desperately trying to reach out to me, and as I approached the wind caught the note from his hand and sent it sailing off into the darkness of the car park, pulling it from between those stubby and filthy fingers.
I’ll always remember his fingers.

July 2018
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