Short Stories

Freddy sat thinking on the seat under the trees. It was a wide, white seat, about four feet long, sloping from the sides to the middle, something like a swing; and was not only comfortable but curious, for it was made of a whale's bone. Freddy often sat there, and thought about it for he was very much interested in it, and nobody could tell him anything about it, except that it had been there a long time.

"Poor old whale, I wonder how you got here, where you came from, and if you were a good and happy creature while you lived?" wondered Freddy, patting the old bone with his little hand.

Translated from an old Romanian folk story and as dark as the darkest night.  You have been warned.


Once upon a time there were twin girls, Stela and Sorina. They were brave little girls, and had no fear of the dark, nor of spiders and other crawling things. Where other young ladies and even young boys would cower, Stela and Sorina would walk with their heads held high. They were good girls, obedient to their mother and father and to the word of God. They were the best children a mother could ask for, and this was their undoing.

A tailor and a goldsmith were traveling together, and one evening when the sun had sunk behind the mountains, they heard the sound of distant music, which became more and more distinct. It sounded strange, but so pleasant that they forgot all their weariness and stepped quickly onwards. The moon had already arisen when they reached a hill on which they saw a crowd of little men and women, who had taken each other's hands, and were whirling round in the dance with the greatest pleasure and delight.

I creep into the back of the church, hoping that no-one will notice me.

The church is decrepit and cold, decay dripping from its pores. My eyes focus on the coffin, perched there in awesome desolation. Was it only three weeks . . .

THOMAS had read somewhere that it's 22 yards between the wickets on a cricket pitch, but this was nowhere near that.

When he was Freddie Trueman bowling to the Aussie's Neil Harvey, he thought the gap between the wickets was the same as it was on the real pitch, but that was a long time ago when Thomas and his best pal Geoffrey spent their summers re-enacting Test matches on The Green, an oasis between rows of anonymous council houses. The Green had six trees of various species spread around it which, in their imagination, provided the perfect Test match arena for the boys.