Flash Fiction

A collection of all my flash fiction, ranging in genre. Feedback is appreciated, either overall or on specific pieces.

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2. Next Time

I am walking, just walking. My fellow students surround me. Habitually, I scan the crowds for one familiar, face, back, head, shirt. Any piece of one particular person I’ve had memorized for forever.

I know he swears that he’ll never fall in love, he told me himself after the last stupid, mindless girl rejected him, but I think, hope, pray that that’s a mask. A façade to hide his true feelings from me like I hide mine from him. I hope someday he’ll see I’ve been here the whole time.

As my feet carry me through the waves of surreal chatter and busy lives, I catch a glimpse of white, a t-shirt on an arm, then a tall figure is revealed, then a familiar face with symmetry and appeal that makes my breath catch and the corners of my mouth twitch up into an involuntary smile that I couldn’t hide if I tried.

He sees me as soon as I see him, and we’e coming towards each other, closer, closer.

A group of people stop in the middle of the hall, chatting. They are oblivious.. He stops, traffic jam, I do the same on the other side of the roadblock. His blue-green eyes, like a pond in the summertime, meet mine over the chaos of people scuttling around us, trying to get through and I am suddenly very self-aware, tucking the blonde in my face behind my ear as his eyes stay steady on mine, the rest of his face unreadable, encrypted.

The things I would pay to know what happened in the brilliant mind behind that blank face. I know it must be an interesting place, the realm that is his mind.

I think about all the things I want to do, the things that could happen. In my daydreams he stops, pulls me aside, gives me a cryptic clue, maybe a phone number, or a place to be and a time. I wish for that excitement, thrill, anticipation. Later, there would be a funny conversation that turns serious at the end. A double confession, sealed with a kiss. The beginning of something new, a long time coming. That’s what happens in the movies, but if this were a movie he’d be here by now.

In reality, I’d be happy with a smile, a greeting, a brush of the shoulders, hands, anything, please.

All too soon we’re moving, we’re passing, going different directions, no time for a hi or goodbye.

A wide grin spreads across my face anyway as I think, Maybe next time, perhaps tomorrow...?

I can’t help it, I turn, look back through the mob, now clearing out as the next class period approaches. The white shirt is snow, brown hair is caramel, shoulder blades are knives. I am still smiling.

As if he feels my eyes lingering on him like smoke from a fire, he glances back too, and sees me stopped. He smiles, hesitates, then turns back, and continues in his path away.

Next time.

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