Being rather short on time at the moment, I’ve decided to offer up a story I recently wrote for some competition or other. The rules asked for a really short piece of flash fiction. I came up with, for some reason, a story about coincidence. The story didn’t place, leaving me at liberty to share it with you instead. I’d be interested to know what you think about it in terms of a story light on action.
Not My Mother, Teresa
I once found myself sharing a table in a London café with a nun called Sister Teresa. It was the anniversary of my mother’s disappearance; her name was Teresa as well.
That encounter sprang to mind when the guy sitting next to me on the plane introduced himself as John Latimer. I didn’t tell him that we shared the same name; instead we discussed cloud formations and why they always seem to look like rabbits.
He told me he lived in Brighton and asked me where I was from. I lied and said Oxford; I’ve never been there but it was the first place I could think of. Thankfully he hadn’t been there either. It sounds like Brighton’s changed a bit since we moved away. Dad returned once after an old neighbour thought she’d spotted Mum at the train station, but it can’t have been her because her note said she’d never come back.
Before landing, John got up to use the toilet. I wouldn’t normally have looked in his passport but it was just lying there, on the seat. I wondered how many other people were born the same day that the two of us were; tens of thousands, probably.
‘You never know,’ he said, as we waited at the carrousel, ‘our paths may cross again, if you believe in that sort of thing.’
I don’t. What’s the point? It wasn’t my mother who turned up in that café was it?
© flyingscribbler 2012