Writing Assignment – 2nd July 2016

Writing Assignment – 2nd July 2016

Assignment: You’re in the garden calling the cat in for the night. It’s dark. You have a torch, but the batteries are going, and the light begins to fade. In the corner of your eye you think you see someone, but you pass it off as a trick of the light, but then…

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2 thoughts on “Writing Assignment – 2nd July 2016

  1. Right Next To You

    The closing music of ‘Crimewatch’ woke James from his doze. He recalled hearing about a serial killer but must have drifted off soon after. Anne’s head was heavy on his shoulder. He eased her back onto the cushions and stood up slowly, a loud creak escaping from his back. He shuffled towards the TV and turned it off, leaving the room in darkness. Anne did not stir. It had been a long day and they were both exhausted by the time they’d cleared up after tea. Just tomorrow to get through and then they could enjoy a quiet weekend, tending to the garden.

    James’ slippers brushed along the hallway carpet as he made his way to the unlocked back door. He opened it and called out to Esme their cat. Much like him, Esme was no dirty stop-out. She loved her home comforts and a good nap and would not be amused at being left out all night. She would normally hop down from her viewpoint on the fence and then saunter in whilst James politely held the door open for her but tonight she wasn’t there.

    James called to her again, opened the door wider and scanned the garden in the semi-darkness. The low light from the hallway allowed him to see across the patio but no further. Huffing loudly, he fetched the torch and went to check the shed. Esme had been known to get locked in there. She’d find a warm spot, go into a cat coma and then wake him (and half the street) in the middle of the night, bawling to be freed and fed.

    As he walked down the garden path he saw, or rather felt, something shift in the far corner. He shone the torch in that direction but the light flickered and seconds later the ancient batteries gave up and James was cast in darkness. “Who’s there?” he shouted. There was no reply but the Japanese Maple shook violently and there was a crunch of feet on the slate by the back fence.

    “Show yourself!” he called, louder this time but he didn’t move any further forward. “I’m calling the police!” As he reached into his dressing gown pocket for his mobile, he saw the outline of someone hooded, scramble up and over the fence into the playing fields behind.

    Despite standing stock still, James was panting. Sweat was trickling down the middle of his back and his hands were clammy. He felt disorientated and stared at the phone in his hand for a few moments wondering what to do. A loud meow bought him back to his senses. He could see Esme’s silhouette by the back door.

    Gathering himself he headed back towards the house. He’d wake Anne, make a strong cuppa and go up to bed. Then he’d call the police in the morning and give them a piece of his mind. There had been three shed break-ins in the area in recent weeks and it was about time the Police showed a presence. He hoped his new pruning set and shears had not been nicked.

    As he stepped inside the house he noticed red paw prints in a neat line leading from the living room to the back door. “Anne! What’s all this?” James called but there was no reply.

    Flicking on the living room light, he first noticed the groove on the sofa next to Anne where Esme must have been sleeping. Anne had not moved. She was reclined against the cushions where he had left her. The front of her white dressing gown was stained a deep crimson and something was sticking out of her chest. James made his way towards her, as if in slow-motion and felt the bile rise in throat as he realised his new pruning knife had definitely not been stolen.

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