No Distance Too Far – SHORT STORY

shack in woods

IN THE MIDDLE of somewhere disaster struck. Civilisation was hundreds of miles away. All alone, I had no choice but to walk.

Faced with snow-capped peaks, I persevered through bitter winds, battered by ice crystals until I thought the elements might claim me for their own, so eager were they to bury me in a blanket of white, to freeze me, to possess me as a relic of the mountainside. My will and courage pitted against near vertical ascents, I did not break, determination carrying me aloft while food ran scarcer than blood at the tips of my toes and fingers.

I beat the mountain only to be faced by a descent of nightmares, where one error would result in my body tumbling to the base. They were the most perfect hours of my life, as I channelled the spirit of a mountain goat, finding balance and agility in crucial moments until finally I was down, faced by the undulating shape of miles of thick forest.

My feet were blistered, caking socks to feet. My bones ached as if I had aged forty years in two days and the most persistent of growls emanated from my deprived stomach as I trudged onwards into the darkness, the scent of pine needles and golden sap satisfying my senses if nothing else. I fought bears in my mind, speared fish and roasted squirrels. But not a soul did I see. A tree fell in the woods, and I was there to hear it.

Spurred on by an insatiable desire I walked miles all alone, as the wind whispered through tree tops, that I was not welcome here.

Finally, after walking through the night, stumbling and bouncing from bark to bark, howling like a wolf to make the experience more authentic, hallucinating perhaps, the pain of walking dulled to a distant memory I once knew.

Descending a hill, I breached a clearing, and the relief I felt at what I saw made me crumple to my knees, to weep with the remaining fluids my body could spare; a half a tear struggled to fall as I kissed the earth.

Fueled by the sight of a solitary shack, I ran, gasping, desperation overwhelming all else as I scurried across grass, then a track, the small shack like a visible dream, one window lit up, suggesting a presence. Quickly it approached, tantalising, larger and larger, until I was on the path to the door.

Desperate, I thumped on the door. A short old man answered, addressing me with suspicion.

“Got any smokes?” I said, wheezing.

“No.”

 

lion around 2

 

24 thoughts on “No Distance Too Far – SHORT STORY

  1. All that for a cigarette!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This was really wonderful. I’m getting used to receive shocks from you. This was not one and left me with a smile.
    I really wait to read your work! Keep writing and best wishes for you submission πŸ˜„

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Many thanks syeda, i appreciate all the comments! πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It is always a pleasure. Thank you for sharing your wonderful works with us! πŸ˜„πŸ˜„

        Liked by 1 person

  3. I have been known to flag passing cars for a fag…:D

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Ooh, I do love a good twist at the end. Nicely played πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks babbitman πŸ™‚
      I had the idea circulating for a while before finishing this today.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Pretty good piece. It really did have my attention the whole way through. I like how you added the thing about got any smokes, that was a nice touch. Anyway I have a blog at Gastradamus and I would really like to get a writers review on my stories. My topics are edgy and spicey, so you should definatly check them out.

    Like

  6. Love this. Brilliant. Great twist. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    1. thanks Kate. Sorry I haven’t been to your blog in awhile, my WP list of blogs to visit doesn’t always work 😐

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Not to worry. It’s good to see your icon turn up. Brings a smile to my face that you are still around and plodding on. Hope the writing is going well.

        Liked by 1 person

      2. Yeah it is, submitting my first manuscript this week πŸ™‚ Scary and exciting at the same time.
        How is your writing going?

        Liked by 2 people

      3. Good. Working on two novels… At the same time. Glutton for punishment! Good luck with the submission… You will do great.

        Liked by 1 person

      4. thanks.
        Good luck on your novels, two at a time is no mean feat! πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      5. Thanks… It’s definitely keeping me on my toes. πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  7. Haha. Oh, a funny surprise. Smokers do behave that way. On a serious note, you did an excellent job of describing the heroe’s ache and thoughts. Bravo.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Andrew!
      Feedback appreciated as always.

      Liked by 1 person

  8. Beautiful wordplay that You feel like you are yourself that struggling protagonist.:)
    Nice one!

    Liked by 1 person

      1. You are most Welcome!

        Liked by 1 person

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