Friday 19 April 2013

'Kite Flying' by Shirley Golden

'It's not difficult,' Clive told her.  'It's as easy as flying a kite.'  He shot her a look and smiled.
Diana shielded her eyes and gazed into the cloud blown sky.  It wasn't like the kites she remembered from childhood.  It wasn't kite shaped.  It wasn't colourful, or gay.  Of course, Clive would tease her for using the gay word.  Pity, because it was well-suited to the meaning of a merry, lively mood.  Now, if used in that context, it raised a snigger.  
Clive tugged and leant back.  He was dragged forward a few steps.  
'Watch it, you'll blow away,' she said.
He turned to her.  'Silly.  You and your fancies.  Want a go?'
It reminded her of when he tried to persuade her to take a turn at driving the quad bike, and then shouted when she got them stuck in the mud.  She shook her head.
'Go on, you'll enjoy it.'
'I don't think I'd be very good at it,' she said.
'Oh, Diana, you always say that.  Think positive!  You'll be fine.  Go on.'  He shifted towards her, ignoring her protests.
The canvass was an arch; it made her think of a black rainbow.  
Clive rearranged the handles and prepared to hand them over.  The grey at his temples was distinguished.  Grey made her look tired, so she dyed her hair its original chestnut colour.  She suspected she was too old and clunky for this malarkey.  
He held out the handles and regarded her.  
She took control but fumbled to get a proper hold.
'Pull down,' Clive said.  'Not like that, use both arms, and pull harder.'
She tugged on one handle and the wind blew her sideways.  Her feet left the ground.  
His protest rang loud at first, but as she was dragged further from him, towards the cliff edge, the wind swallowed his words.  His mouth worked soundlessly and formed hollow shapes.
She felt weightless, limitless.  And when she looked down, she saw how small everything was.


  1. Possibly an homage to The Wasp Factory? Very nice.

    1. I wish it was that clever, but I've not read 'The Wasp Factory'. Thanks for leaving a comment!

  2. Great little wonder if he did that deliberately "I'm too old and clunky for him" Hmmm...quite sinister, a great yarn!

  3. A great story, Shirley! Think we'd all like to fly away at some point!

  4. Thanks for the lovely comments :)

  5. Intriguing. It makes me wonder about both their motives. She could have let go, but she chose to fly.

  6. Good story, Shirley. I really liked the ending.

  7. We learn a lot about your characters, their relationship and their back-story in this short word-count, and then there's the deeper stuff between the lines. Terrific multi-layered story, Shirley.

  8. Thank you! Rachael, yes, it was more about her seeing him in the proper perspective for the first time. Oscar, thanks for your encouraging comments :)


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