Emily Rogers Is On The Run

Here is another little piece of flash fiction for you. You are probably going to realize very soon why I normally stay clear of making up stories because I have no idea where I was going with this one.

I was nominated for the TELL THE STORY Challenge by bereavedandbeingasingleparent, as you can see from his post below. The photo he gave me is the one directly below the title – that is my prompt, but because my story is a tad long, I am going to throw a couple more in to brighten this post up.

Tell The Story Challenge

Emily Rogers Is On The Run

There are days that I feel as if our games teachers should be working in a state prison. It’s frrrrrreeeeeeezing cold February, a chilled blast of wind rushing at you every few seconds, frost coating every blade of grass and adorning every spider’s web. Don’t you think on a day like today – we should be allowed to have our games lesson indoors in the school gym.

But oh no! Miss Forster with that booming voice and shrill whistle shrieking at us in the changing rooms to hurry up and change into our athletics shirts and gym knickers and trainers and queue up outside the doors that lead over to the school’s outside sports courts and pitches.

“But Miss…it’s too cold for cross-country today!”

“Nonsense! It’s the perfect conditions for running.”

The only good thing about the sports field today was that the ground was hard and compact. I have endured too many cross-country circuits where we were all slipping and sliding through the mud and could barely stay on our feet. There was something about the fiercely cold wind that made me run faster than I had before. I think all of us girls were running faster than usual, and Miss Forster had a sadistic look of triumph across her face as she cheered us on whilst gripping her stop-watch tightly.

As I was running past the tennis courts for my last lap around the fields, I noticed that funny girl Emily who was in her uniform with her school coat on. Emily kept to herself, she didn’t seem to want to join in with anyone else. Emily always had a sick note for physical education, she never seemed to take part in games lessons. She didn’t play any sports or do any athletics or running. She just sat or stood whilst everyone else had to take part.

Emily was staring out through the frosted tennis court mesh fencing at the fields beyond. She had her hands wrapped around some of the frosty sections of the mesh fence and it looked as if she was about to hoist herself up to climb. She did! I wondered what she was doing! I saw Emily slowly crawl up to the top of the tennis court fencing which was probably a good ten feet high. Then she swung her legs over the top of the fencing and dropped down to the other side.

And then I saw something I had never seen before. Emily Rogers began to run. She did not look back, I could see her powerful strides as she galloped across that field as if her life depended on it. I have to admit there was something inspirational about witnessing Emily’s escape. Every single one of us girls were feeling hard-pressed to be made to run around the school sports fields in our gym-knickers. We would have loved to escape, but it was Emily who had done it. Emily Rogers who nobody had ever sen run before…she was now fleeing as fast as her legs could take her.

She was on the other side of the first field when one of the girls I was running with started yelling at Miss Forster:

“Miss, Miss! Emily Rogers is on the run!”

____________

So now it is my turn to tag three other bloggers to take part in the TELL THE STORY Challenge. This is the photo I am providing – it is a plunge pool from the ancient Roman spa baths in the English city of Bath.

 

plunge pool (2)

I know there are a lot of TELL THE STORY Challenge tags doing the rounds, so please don’t feel obligated if the photo does not inspire you or if you have lots of other projects you want to work on instead. The three bloggers I am tagging today are:

What Did Suzie Have To Say About It?

For a start, you may ask, who is Suzie?

I shared a flat with Suzie, Tina and Marta for three years.  Suzie was always very easy to get on with.  The dynamics of our flat were amusing to many.  Everyone said Marta was papa bear, I was mama bear and Suzie and Tina were baby bears.  Or as another friend said, Marta bought everything for the flat, I cleaned everything in the flat, and Suzie broke everything in the flat, Tina was just little and cute.

Suzie and I got on as soon as we started working together.  We both loved to laugh.  Suzie is an amazing dancer.  She has always been very popular because she is fun loving and loves parties.  She loves shoes, she had a ridiculous amount of shoes which were stacked on top of each other in a pile that took up half of her wardrobe. Some of her shoes I liked, some of her shoes I thought were bizarre, but whenever she wore the shoes I thought were strange, she received a bundle of compliments about them.

By the time I was living in a flat with my ex-flatmate – you know I have been thinking that is is becoming quite confusing talking about him all of the time as my ex-flatmate. So I am going to make up a name for him.  There is no way I would say his real name. Let’s call him Jack, erm…Jack Barnes.  Right, I hope you are awake, because from now on I am going to call my ex-flatmate (the one who crushed Caramel) Jack Barnes.

Suzie was married by the time I was living in the same flat as Jack.  I had moved out of the flat we shared into another flat in the next road.  Suzie and I used to spend so much time together before she was married, but I felt it best to give her some space when she was married.  I did go round for dinner and loved that her husband cooked amazing jollof rice and plantain.  I have loved plantain ever since I spent time in Ghana.

Suzie and I would try to meet on a regular basis after work to run home together.  We lived about three miles away from where we worked.  We could lengthen the distance we ran for by taking a circuitous route.  I loved running.  At that stage, I was running at least three times a week.  I would do one long run of around 8 miles and two shorter runs of around 4 or 5 miles each week.  The run home with Suzie was an extra and I enjoyed it because we used to chat almost the whole time we were running.

So what did Suzie have to say about the situation with Jack?  Hmm, I think I have to go further back in time.

monopoly

Suzie was one of the first people who said I would be perfect for Jack.  She had known him for years and their parents knew each other.  I know that besides the fact Jack and I were both devoted to working as volunteers on various projects and were both known for being studious, people loved that we both had the same fondness for what we did in our spare time.  We were very keen on karaoke and monopoly (not at the same time). That seemed to be everyone’s main focus for a while.  I laughed, I just commented that if two people both love monopoly and karaoke, what else is there to worry about?  I mean what else could every be an issue? Karaoke and monopoly are clearly the foundation of a successful relationship!

In addition you probably need to know that Suzie’s husband was a very close friend of Jack’s.  They socialized together a lot.  He also seemed to think I would be perfect for Jack, but he warned me, Jack is not very sensitive to women and can come across a bit ignorant.  He told me of several women who had been more than offended by him.  He told me Jack is like a teenager and has never really learnt to understand women.

I also knew that Suzie’s husband and other friends who were very close to Jack had started to tease him about me.  Especially a young man named Jamal.  I will tell you more about Jamal in another post.  But, I know that the teasing started with Jamal, Suzie’s husband and a group of their friends.  Young men who were fun, popular and addicted to their phones…which is all how it started.  I am sure that none of them had any intention of the explosion of invasive interest and insults that developed.

Suzie’s husband was one of the first to cotton on to the fact that what had originated with innocent teasing was starting to get out of hand.  He took the time to discuss it with me and realized I was becoming alarmed at the comments I was receiving from complete strangers.  From then on, Suzie and him tried to be as supportive as possible in a situation that was going to advance beyond anyone’s expectations.  At the end of the day they cared for both Jack and me, and they tried their best to resolve the situation.

So much happened, it would take pages and pages to tell you everything Suzie said to me at every stage of the challenging situation that developed.  It all makes up a huge tapestry of “he said this” and “she thought that” and is endless!  So what did Suzie say after Jack sat down with me and made me a cup of tea?

Suzie and I ran home together one evening that following week.  First of all, she wanted to know if I was alright.  I told her how happy I was with Jack.  Suzie seemed surprised.

Her main concern was my reaction to what everyone else was saying about Jack and I.  She confirmed that the consensus of opinion was that Jack and I were now a couple, but she also said that even she was shocked at what she had heard and seen during that week.

I am sick of gossip and rumours Suzie.  Other people have piled so much pressure on both Jack and me, it has ruined the atmosphere in the flat.  I just want to be able to feel relaxed in my own home and for Jack to feel relaxed.  I honestly thought that by now, people would have become bored and moved on to gossiping about someone else, but it doesn’t seem as if that is ever going to happen.  So I only have one choice, to ignore what is being said and not to let it interfere with my life and life in the flat.”

Well done Mel.  I think you are right.  All you can do is ignore it.  I just want you to be happy.  You only deserve to be happy.  So does Jack.  If you could try to ignore the rest of the world, and don’t worry what anyone else thinks, maybe.. just maybe, things will be easier between you and Jack.”

But even Suzie asked me if I thought there was any possibility, after all the damage, that anything more might develop between Jack and I.

Much as I loved Suzie, and loved spending time with Suzie, I no longer trusted her with my feelings about Jack.  I suspected she would share whatever I said with her husband and it would then go back to Jack.  I truly wanted it to be Jack and I alone who discussed any possible prospects for a future relationship.  So I tried to throw cold water all over the idea that anything could ever develop. I said I really did want to enjoy being friends and flatmates.  That was all that mattered to me.

Suzie asked me if I knew what Jack wanted next.  Now, how would I know what Jack wanted next?

I shrugged my shoulders and said that since the conversation the weekend before we had not had another heart to heart, we were just enjoying each other’s company more. Suzie then told me that Jack was making it known to his friends and colleagues that there was something between he and I.

Suzie, if he has something he wants to talk about to me, he knows where I live.  I am not going to worry about it.  We have only just started to get along again.  I am in no rush to jeopardise that.”

That’s fine Mel, just be prepared.  He thinks you like him a lot.”

More to come:

 

via Circuitous — Word of the Day Challenge

https://onedailyprompt.wordpress.com/2018/09/04/your-daily-word-prompt-consensus-september-4th-2018/

FOWC with Fandango — Tapestry