Saturday 17 November 2007

Magnum Opus - Flash Short Story

Imagine death, they said. Then imagine it never happening to you.

So I did, and I relished my tales of the macabre. Savoured each strangulation and knifing, every tumour. And each new tale brought me more readers. The media exploded with hype about my life, or lack of it. Described in gothic detail the torture chamber that was my mind. The public lapped it up. Role play for the psychotic.

Then they said again - imagine death, imagine mass strangulation, the earth squeezed of air as sulphurous vapours rise. So, like a puppet, I did.

The world awaited the live television adaptation, via satellite link, of my magnum opus. Children crept down stairs, and concealed themselves behind furniture. Men and women turned out the lights, until only the moon and flickering digital images lit their world. Then the haunting music began.

Safe within my Victorian mansion, I awaited the lights of my city, of the world, to surge back, to floodlight my magnificence. Waited for their applause. It never came. I waited for them, and their urging of blood and gore, of death, to call and order more. The dust coated phone wires remained silent. A preternatural hush fell over the world.

Imagine death, they had said. Then imagine it never happening to you.

Copyright © Catherine J Gardner 2007

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