The King and The Magic Well

My daughter, Anya who was nearly five at the time, had been asking me if I would come into her school and tell some stories to her class. Of course, I really wanted to do that for her, but these days it’s not easy with all the regulations that are involved. The whole process took several weeks by the time I had been CRB’d (successfully, I’m happy to report) and her teacher and I had managed to match our schedules. But finally, it was on!

My hour fell in ‘Healthy Week’ and the day before I came in, Anya’s teacher asked if I could read a story about being healthy. Dutifully, I looked round to find a story that would be interesting and entertaining for the kids, where the message wasn’t overly simple and obviously political (these kids, I have learned, are very smart and can see through this easily!) and was, preferably, one they hadn’t heard before. A couple of hours later, I hadn’t managed to find one that fitted all these criteria. I was, very slightly, panicking. I couldn’t possibly turn up unprepared, especially as Anya had been telling everyone for days that her ‘daddy was coming in’. Continue reading “The King and The Magic Well”

Glory – A story for Computer Gamers

Originally written in 2005 and inspired by a simple computer game, gamers of a certain age and disposition will  no doubt spot its origins. Are you in the know?

I’m alone now. I’m possibly the only one left. My scanner shows no friendlies in range at all. I know there’s at least three left, and one of them has got to be carrying. It’s up to me. Crouched behind the crates, I pause to reload and take a drag of my cigarette. Some of the ash trickles down my front as I inhale and I replace it in the overflowing ashtray – I’ll need both hands and a clear vision to move forward.

I check my weapon, the Bullpup is loaded and a quick view through zoomed lens over the bridge reveals nothing. Silence. No radio chatter, just a soft hiss of the falling rain. Their target is no more than a few seconds sprint, but without a positive sighting it may as well be miles away. With a tense sigh, I stand up and sprint towards the stone room on the other side of the bridge. Continue reading “Glory – A story for Computer Gamers”