Jimmy Lennox was three days shy of twenty when he discovered the Universe in the bottom of a can of borlotti beans. He poked the rest of the beans out of the way with his fork before giving the Universe a gentle prod with one of the tines. The sky outside his kitchen window immediately darkened, and the floor began to rumble ominously beneath his socks.
He stopped prodding.
Unsure what to do next, he left the Universe on a piece of damp kitchen roll (he figured that what worked for cress seeds might also work for the Universe) and went upstairs to see what Google had to say. It wasn’t much help, so, after a while, Jimmy closed his laptop and went to sleep. Universe or no Universe, he’d been up early that morning and it didn’t suit.
The next day, he woke around eleven. After hitting the snooze button a few times, he dragged on some jogging bottoms and sloped downstairs. He was halfway through making a cup of tea before he remembered the Universe on its square of kitchen roll.
To Jimmy’s relief, the Universe – the one on the kitchen roll and the one outside his window – looked much the same as the day before. Blowing on his tea to cool it, he regarded the Universe with a level stare. What to do with the damn thing? He briefly considered taking it to Uni with him for his 12 o’clock lecture but changed his mind when he considered what might happen if it got squashed in his pocket. Best to leave it there until he got back.
In the fusty quiet of the lecture theatre, the dramatic vibrations of Jimmy’s mobile as it buzzed its way across the melamine desk were heard by all. Red-faced, he grabbed it and pressed it hard against his thigh, muttering an apology to the grungy lecturer.
It was an apology that went unheard, however. Outside the window, filthy-looking clouds had begun to roil and the heavy rumble of something like thunder could be heard. Jimmy looked at his phone.
“Got bk this morning m8. House was a tip. Gave kitchen a gud clean but ur going to have to do the bathroom. PS Can u get some kitchen roll on the way home?”
The lights of the lecture hall flickered.
Circlesunderstreetlights is a writer, editor and translator who’s finally got round to writing for herself, rather than for others. Flash fiction and stories are easing her into the process.
#1 by Kelly Evans on July 15, 2012 - 5:48 pm
Loved this. Short and sweet.
#2 by Bryan Murphy on July 16, 2012 - 1:34 pm
Nice one, Circletc! Your profile is similar to mine, so I empathise.
#3 by Lane on July 16, 2012 - 2:20 pm
Ah, so that’s what’s wrong with the global weather systems ;)
#4 by Cat (@stillicides) on July 16, 2012 - 2:37 pm
This is awesome! Love love love your style, feels somehow reminiscent of Douglas Adams, or Ray Bradbury when not melancholy. Amazing :-)
#5 by circlesunderstreetlights on July 16, 2012 - 2:50 pm
Thank you so much for all the kind comments – glad you enjoyed!
#6 by Justine Dunn on July 17, 2012 - 10:58 am
haha, loved it!
#7 by Fiona Jane Richardson on August 8, 2012 - 12:48 pm
a pleasure to read, great concept and beautifully written.