by Emma Hughes
Since we broke up, I have invited every girl you’ve been involved with out for a coffee. I think most of them are a little surprised when I corner them in the queue for the toilets and suggest that we meet up and ‘do something fun’. But they always say yes. Perhaps they’re hoping for tips.
First there was Anna, who could have been a boy from behind, followed by Minette, whose delicate bare legs mottled like corned beef when it was cold. Then there was a gap of nearly three months, when you and I saw each other almost every weekend and nearly kissed twice. I started to wonder whether you’d changed your mind about me, but before I knew it you’d met the identical twins, Sarah and Sally. Sally, who was your girlfriend for two-and-a-half weeks, found you in a clinch with Sarah behind the bins at my birthday party, which you’d invited them both along to. She broke a bottle of Smirnoff Ice over your head. Next came Keeley, the pretty nurse from A&E that patched you up. She had the same surname as me.
So far, I’ve taken 23 of your girls to my local Starbucks. There, I grab us one of the plush sofas at the back and tell them how much I like their shoes. Soon they’re chattering away to me about their jobs and flats and what they did over the weekend, but I’m never really listening. Instead, I find myself watching their lips move, trying to work out where mine fell short.
Emma Hughes would do anything for love, but not that. She’s a freelance journalist, and her current hairstyle is a tribute to Scott Walker.
#1 by Bob Jacobs on July 4, 2010 - 9:05 am
Great little idea, and I love the way you ended it.
#2 by Martha Williams on July 5, 2010 - 10:10 am
Funny and poignant – a clever idea.
#3 by gaelikaa on July 5, 2010 - 1:58 pm
Flash fiction at it’s most discreet and clever. Well done.
#4 by Leah on October 11, 2010 - 9:44 am
Sharp and right to the heart. Read it 3 times.