Tag: short stories

Welcome to the Short Story Sunday Library

Short Story Sunday is a library site showcasing a range of original, innovative and beautifully written short stories submitted by published and unpublished authors worldwide.

In June 2015 Short Story Sunday went on hiatus with a pause on the publishing of new stories. Previously private members-only stories were also set public.

You can browse the full list of short stories featured on this site here.

Below are some examples of featured stories across different genres;

Short Story Sunday has been created and edited by Lydia Niomi Christie (formerly ‘Andal’)

Enjoy reading

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Sea Urchin By Julie Dawn

Sea UrchinHe thought she was a rock. Smothered in seaweed, motionless, her skin encrusted with salt. But then she moved, and he leapt back so fast that he fell over and landed on the sand, which was not as soft and accommodating as you might think.

She uncurled herself, her hair a tangled web of darkness, twisted with mermaid’s necklace and several pale starfish. Her face was darkened by sun and reddened by wind. She was tiny, a waif of a thing, with kelp wrapped around her body like a second skin, and she reeked of rotting weed.   She looked like an urchin, a waif.

She hissed at him, baring tiny white teeth like oyster shells. Behind her, the sea breathed softly and rhythmically, whispering to itself, vast and impenetrable.

Ben drew back, but he didn’t run. He was seven years old, and he was not afraid of anything. (Except the dark, and climbing frames, and flying beetles.) He stared at her, and she watched him with dark eyes, lustrous and deep as the ocean. He glanced around. His mum was a long way down the beach, hand in hand with her boyfriend Darren, following the lacy edge of surf and leaning down to pick up a shell or a piece of crusty pumice. There was nobody else. The sun had nearly dipped below the horizon; the sea was glowing with that strange fiery light that comes when there are stormclouds looming, and the sky was streaked with gold and pink like candyfloss.

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Wild Bill’s Bakery By Daniel Miller

Will BillWilliam Andrew Morris, 78, of White Butte died Thursday night Nov. 8, 2009.

Graveside services to be held Saturday Nov. 11 at 2pm in Cliffside Cemetery.

Known to friends as “Wild Bill”, William was born August 16, 1931 in Clarksville, VA. Parents, William Jackson Morris and Betty Claire Ringwald, owned a small bakery where William worked as a youth and gained a love for the family trade. From 1949 to 1953 William served in the Army where he met Linda Whitfield. The two married in 1953 before moving to White Butte. William and Linda opened Wild Bill’s Bakery in 1954 where he served as head baker and Linda kept the accounting. Into retirement William continued to work part-time at his Bakery.

Survivors include daughter, Janette Mitchell; and two grandchildren, Samuel and Jeremy.

Sam Harrison read the obituary on Friday November 9th. Sam’s mother was hesitant about letting her son read the short script, preferring he stick to more uplifting material. “Wouldn’t you rather read the funnies, Sam? How did you even find out what an obit is anyway?” She asked him. Sam knew what an obituary was. He had stumbled across the two-page section of the White Butte Democrat one day about a year earlier in the leafy pile of pages his father had discarded in his search for the classified and sports sections. Sam enjoyed reading the “funnies” on Sunday morning when they were in color, but the weekday paper’s stale gray and white failed to pique his attention. The pictures of old people in the obituary section, however, fascinated him. He rarely read the actual pieces, preferring simply to imagine their lives in his head. He had read them at first, but found their sterile facts and summaries of life uninspiring – much like the gray and white funnies. In his imagination he filled in the details of those gray-white faces or even made up entirely new lives for them: valiant soldiers, movie stars, or even ancient wizards and knights on his more fanciful days.

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Apollo XI By Julie Hayman

Apollo XIJuly 1969. Everyone’s making rockets. Kev’s made one, Bobby’s made one, Nick Cruikshank has made one. Kev’s is a Fairy Liquid bottle covered with white sticky-back plastic and the words Apollo XI written in permanent marker along the side, like he’s seen Val make on Blue Peter, with wooden forks, the kind you get at the chip shop, glued low-down to make it aerodynamic. Bobby’s is an Airfix kit he bought at the model shop on Fisherton Street, with transfers of the American flag and NASA up near the snout, while Nick Cruikshank’s is a fab one, built with Meccano, complete with a launching gantry on wheels. They’re going to have a competition in the park on Saturday afternoon, to see which one’s best. Kev asks if I’m going to bring a rocket too: I nod and race home.

I’ve already got an empty Cornflakes box, some crow’s feathers from the garden, a square of corrugated cardboard and some cocktail sticks in my bedroom drawer – they might be useful for it. I ask Mum if I can have the washing-up liquid bottle, and she says I can when it’s empty, but it’s still half-full so won’t be ready in time – I’ll have to think of something else for the body of the rocket.

By teatime, I haven’t come up with anything. By bathtime, nothing too.

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Exclusive Member Story Men of the World By Nick Black

Men of the WorldI write this by the guttering light of a candle, melted down so far, it’s mostly wick and puddle now.   The darkness around me billows and retreats, billows larger again as a draft creeps in near my feet.

My nib scrapes against this paper, though I can barely read what I am writing.  I ignore the repeated, demented, banging that I cannot tell if outside on the street or within this very house.  I steady my hand so as to spill no more ink, and start at the beginning, with Thurwell bursting into the Club, a train of snow in his wake. Burton and I beckoned him to join us by the hearth, and sent for brandy. Neither of us had seen him since his return to England, and while he answered our many questions, I took the time to examine the changes five years abroad had wrought on the man. Never thickly set, he had dropped a weight of flesh from his bones but was finely dressed, moustache well waxed, beard curling from his thin chin in an upward hook.

“Gentleman,” he said, raising his tumbler in a toast. ‘To old friends.” In the dancing rosy firelight, his face had a positively Moorish aspect so that his eyes and teeth flashed all the whiter by contrast. “And tomorrow, my lambs, you must come to my rooms, for I have brought back mementos that I believe may amuse, things,” he looked around, “not suitable for such public galleries.”

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Meeting Fran By Jennifer Thompson

Meeting FranMeeting One

“So we have the veg covered; on to poultry, then there’s just ingredients for desserts and hmm, anything else?”

“Wine, lots of wine.”

Copious amounts of alcohol would be the only way of getting through yet another dinner party with the awful couple from across the road Angela was so bloody obsessed with. She pretended she hadn’t heard my comment, as usual. The joys of Tescos.

“So you still O.K to take the kids out later?” She asked, whilst trying to select the best from a bunch of identical apples.

“Yeah sure, I’m a bit jealous of them actually.” I remarked.

She lifted her head briefly from apple duties to give me a disapproving look.

“Why on earth would you be jealous of a bunch of teenagers thrashing around to rock music and spilling drinks all over one another?”

“Because that sounds incredible.” I replied honestly. God, I couldn’t even remember the last time I was out past midnight. I’m sure I used to have fun. Angela tutted in response,

“Right, these should do fine. Let’s head over to the baking stuff.”

“Sounds absolutely thrilling, darling.”

“You go and get the wine then, make yourself useful.” Angela ordered, in a tone that reminded me of my mother.

“Rightio.”

I trudged over to the vast alcohol isle, passing a group of lads debating whether or not they would get served for their four litre bottle of cider. Those were the days.

So did the Wilson-Jones’ prefer Italian or French red? Who cares, I thought, grabbing a decent looking £5.99 bottle. Suddenly there was a loud clunk from behind me, followed by the unmistakeable sound of glass shattering. I looked around to survey the damage.

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Scar Tissue By Joe Kavanagh

Scar TissueHe stood in the lobby at the elevator doors, as he had on so many countless occasions before, Watching impatiently as the flashing numbers showed its rate of descent and cursing silently each time a solid light indicated that it was stopping at another floor. The fact that such a small hindrance stressed him so much was another source of annoyance. A further example of the human condition colliding with the modern world and making life more difficult than it needed to be. There was nothing natural about it. Primitive man had never spent time stressed out over the speed of an elevator. He absentmindedly stroked the long knot of scar tissue that ran down the from beneath his left eye to his chin. Five. It was stuck on five again. The front door of the building opened behind him and the pretty girl from Fairbanks Incorporated on floor ten entered. Most people kept a wary distance when they caught sight of his scar. Strangers were often reticent to share an elevator with him if they were on their own. The Fairbanks girl included. The first time he clapped eyes on her he observed how she slowed her pace upon seeing him standing in the elevator. A barely perceptible moment where she had considered turning on her heel and walking away. But his best gregarious smile and the fact that he held one hand between the doors to keep them open had persuaded her to climb on in. Reluctantly. It suited him that way. People made assumptions about his scar. He had worn it for so long now that he had become accustomed to the stares. They didn’t bother him in the least. In fact, if he searched the facial features of people when they first noticed him he could almost tell what they were thinking. Someone must have tried to kill him with a shank in prison. I’ll bet that he got it in a gang fight. Probably some kind of motorcycle accident. Riding without a helmet. He looked like the type that could be that reckless. It couldn’t possibly be anything to do with surgery. People only had surgery on their face to make themselves younger looking. Prettier. Never to make themselves look meaner. Sometimes they stared at him as if only the scar existed and not its owner. Recently while riding the subway to Union Square a kid sitting on its mother’s lap had pointed at him.

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