“He’s my brother,” she says, and I struggle to keep my eyes from lighting up. Ninety per cent of my brain is untangling the assumptions I’d already made, and most of the remainder is marvelling that I’ve elicited that information without making a complete arse of myself. The game begins.
Archive for the 'microfiction' Category
“Cheer up!” said the annoying man, “it might never happen!”
“Thank you,” she replied. “Your saying that has, in one stroke, solved all of my romantic, financial, emotional and health problems, as well as bringing peace to the Middle East and cutting the deficit in half. You should visit a cancer ward and, by inanely repeating the magic spell ‘Cheer up! it might never happen!’ you will doubtless cure all of the patients therein. Who would have thought a glib comment could be so effective?”
“I was only trying to help.”
The phone rings, waking me from a tough night’s sleep. NO CALLER ID. Either telemarketing or overseas, neither of which I want to take right now. I pick it up all the same. There’s a pause, a long pause, then a short tone. Computerised voice: “I’m sorry.” For what? Did it do something wrong? Has someone died? Have computers finally seen the error of their error-ridden ways? Or is it upset about my romantic, financial and employment situations? Does it call in random apologies to strangers from time to time?
“Me too,” I told no-one. “I’m sorry too.”