Gone is the freshness of warm summer rain,
Gone are the words which brought me to shame.
Gone are the birds, aloft in the sky,
Gone are the flowers, which in fields lie.
It happened when we least expected it. The literary Apocalypse. The end of all wor—
A World Full of Nothing My Granddad travelled a lot, when he was younger. He went to France several times, crossing the sea in a small boat when the water was least violent, and claimed he even made it as far as Italy before coming home and settling down with Grandma. Once, when I was just a few years old, I asked him what the rest of the world was like. He… Read More
The Iron Road When Mama died, Granddad decided to take me away from Edinburgh. He had a cousin in Carlisle, so we followed one of the Iron Roads for a hundred miles or more. Granddad said that in the times Before, the Iron Roads carried great vehicles upon them, and thousands of people rode to distant places in only an hour or two. After The Cataclysm, the vehicles were stripped down for… Read More
When I was eight, I found a beautiful flower peeping shyly out from a crack in the concrete. Granddad told me, that Great Grandpa told him, that before The Cataclysm, flowers used to grow everywhere. They grew tame in Gar-Dens and wild in great fields called Maid-O’s. They filled the world with a wonderful miasma of perfume, their hues and shades too many and varied to name. A blanket of colour upon a carpet of green,… Read More
When I was young I found, buried beneath the last century’s ash and dust, a book about the end of the world. Written before the The Cataclysm, it told of how invaders came in gargantuan ships, raining down laser death upon wings of steel. There were dogfights in the sky, great heroics on the ground, and always the altruistic and fearless to lead the way. Humanity went out in a fierce blaze of… Read More
Great Grandpa used to tell me stories about the time right after The Cataclysm. He spoke of suffering and despair and death. Of bodies piled in the streets, rotting where they fell. The flies and rats and crows came in floods. Rivers blocked with bloated corpses. Groundwater tainted by seeping fluids. He told of the sickly sweet smell of decay. It flooded the nostrils and infected the mind with a fearful madness,… Read More
I try to imagine a world inhabited by seven billion people. I try to imagine what it would be like to see other human beings, every single day. I try to imagine how easy life would be if such things as supermarkets and shopping malls still existed; if hunger was not a constant companion. I try to imagine a world in which dogs are just pets, not ravenous beasts which feast in… Read More
After several weeks of RL-inflicted silence, I return thanks to an irresistible Chuck Wendig flash fiction challenge. You shouldn’t need me to tell you which of the twenty conflict scenarios I wrote about. Hope you enjoy! The Road to St Ives “It says here that the Apocalypse has been predicted.” Mavis Merryweather glanced at her husband, his grey comb-over just about visible behind the top of the newspaper held aloft before his… Read More