I had a wonderful weekend away but, as always, it flew by too quickly and it’s now back to work. If you’re like me and feeling that sluggish Monday-mind-syndrome, why not get it working by entering one of my two short story competitions (with prizes!) One of them is for a short story of up to 1000 words on the theme of TREASURE. How you choose to interpret that theme is up to you. You could write about gold or a much loved heirloom. Or the treasure may not be physical, but the search for the meaning of life or the treasure of achieving something important in life.
Open your mind and see where it takes you.
Here’s my story – here the treasure in question is the treasure of choice:
I look around at my colleagues with envy.
“Are you ok, Jamilla?” Shirley asks, stopping her filing for a moment and looking straight at me.
I nod my head. Blink a tear away. Force a smile. Shirley starts filing again. How can I tell her? How can I find the words to say how I really feel?
“If I was going on a nice long holiday, I’d be dancing round the room, not looking like someone had nicked my wallet,” she says, staring at me again, “Pakistan, eh? I’ve never even been on a day trip to France. Closest I’ve got to Pakistan is Portsmouth.”
How I would love to go to France. To Portsmouth.
“My Trevor had a big bonus this month. I thought he might whisk me away to Rome or Paris. But no, he’s buying a motorbike instead. Another one. I don’t know why I put up with him,” Shirley says, prodding at a speck of chipped nail polish.
I do. I would put up with Trevor. Shirley doesn’t mean her words anyway. I see the way she looks at his photo on her desk, the love lurking beneath her voice when he rings her mobile and the sheer joy in her eyes when he sends flowers to the office.
I look away, see Sam. Tall. Handsome. Kind. My breath catches in my throat.
“I don’t know why you two haven’t got it together yet. Anyone can see you’re mad about each other,” Shirley says.
Another man enters my head. I don’t know if he’s tall, or handsome or kind. All I have of him is a grainy photograph. But I will know him soon enough. If only life could be different.