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MacQueen’s Quinterly: Knock-your-socks-off Art and Literature
Issue 15: Sept. 2022
Sequence: 175 words
By Dave Alcock



Swaying, as the ambulance carves corners, its wheels bruising tracks on the newly gritted roads, his son far away, his heart still pounding, he imagines falling flakes. A white world. A yellow moon.

“Home.” His voice is desperate. “Please will you take me?” He won’t agree. Won’t consent. He knows it’s close. That nothing can stop it. The room is a noose. He just wants to run.

There’s an envelope on the over-bed table. “You can take it. It’s signed,” he says. At the door, his son looks and pauses. Nods and smiles. Love flames in his eyes.

Before the blooded body, before the rushing of doctors, before all the alarms that blare like World War III, he speaks final words. Gasps quickly, “I’m going under.” A hand holds his arm. It is impossible to breathe.

Cul-de-sac. Bungalow. Kitchen. Morning paper delivered. Radio alarm come and gone. On a doily on the worktop, the week’s drugs neatly organised. Objects keep sparking with an immortal wish to live.

Dave Alcock
Issue 15, September 2022

has been interested in flash fiction ever since 2016 when he received Flash Fiction Forward (ed. James Thomas and Robert Shapard) as a surprise gift. He read the first page and was hooked and he has been ever since. His work has been published by Every Day Fiction and Flash Frontier, as well as some other excellent lit-zines, and can also be found in two books published by Ad Hoc Fiction. He works as an editor and lives with his wife and two children in Devon, England.

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