Use the name of a song to inspire a story - 1000 words.
Somebody That I Used to Know.
'When we are married will you sleep in on Saturday mornings with me?'
Declan was smiling but worry creased his brow.
'We don't all have your privileged backgrounds' Karen kissed him 'some of
us have to work. Besides I like what I do. Teaching is in my blood'
'Schools were closed on Saturday s when I was a boy' Declan lunged from the
bed but she quickly sidestepped him. 'Well' she paused to admire his naked
body spread across her bed 'a lot has changed since then. For starters
we've stopped using chalk and a slate. And we have central heating so the
kids don't have to carry a sod of turf to teacher anymore'
'Ha ha very funny'
'I'll see you later' Karen kissed him again. A very firm but distracted
kiss on the lips. Not one of those long lingering kisses that ended
several hours later in bed. She shrugged on her pink patchwork coat, she
called it her child's coat; it was hideous. She only wore it to her
Saturday morning job teaching adults to read and write at the local tech.
Something niggled at the edge of Declan's brain. Surely it was too warm
and sunny this morning to wear a coat like that. As soon as Declan heard
the front door to the apartment slam shut he leapt from the bed and dressed
quickly. He snatched his keys from the night stand and bounded down the
steps two at a time. He reached the lobby just in time to see the no. 2
bus speed by and a glimpse of pink patchwork sitting close to the front.
Bless that coat it really stood out from the crowd. Declan's heart sank.
Karen could easily walk to the local tech but instead she was on a bus
going in the opposite direction.
He flung his full six foot six-seventeen stone- built for Rugby body into
his Lexus and followed the bus determined to find out what Karen was up to.
His mother was right he was a fool following his dick. He realised he knew
nothing about this girl except the few things she had told him.
The bus sped along the bus lane making it difficult to follow, thankfully
traffic was light it was so early and Saturday most people weren't even up.
He checked the crowds getting on and off at each stop but he was certain he
hadn't missed that beacon of pink she was wearing. He followed the bus all
the way into the city centre. Where he was completely gobsmacked to see
Karen get another bus to the Northside.
It was such a beautiful morning, shoppers were beginning to stir. Young
families going to the park, workers in their shirt sleeves 'and she's
wearing a quilt. He thought 'something's wrong here.'
Karen finally got off the bus about halfway up the northside of the city.
She began to walk back towards Declan, panic seized him. Karen never
noticed him sitting there in the traffic watching her. Instead she turned
down a narrow street lined with closed-up shops and boarded up windows.
'This does not look good' he thought. The street led on to a larger one
which was less dilapidated looking. And there was a cafe with large glass
windows watching the street. Declan could see Karen sitting at one of the
windows chatting to one of the waitress's. It looked warm inside the
waitress's face was flushed and Karen's cheeks were pink and still she
didn't take off the quilt.
A tall man in a check shirt with the sleeves rolled up, jeans and work
boots entered the cafe. He made a beeline for Karen and sat at her table.
Declan clenched and unclenched his fists. But the man got up again, Karen
speaking animatedly her hands dancing through the air, he was smiling at
her and then he went and sat at another table. Strange he didn't stay
Declan mused. He knew her well enough to chat her. The waitress she had
been speaking to earlier arrived with two plates. So she is expecting
someone. Someone she knows well enough to order for.
An old man shuffled up to the door then. He was wearing old runners
without any laces, a brown tweed pants and an over coat tied with string.
He looked like he hadn't shaved for a few days. The old man hesitated
outside the door watching Karen pour tea into a large white mug. She added
some milk before looking up and catching the old man watching her.
Declan was not prepared for her reaction. Her face broke in to a huge
smile. She signalled for the old guy to come and join her. She held up
the second plate and showed him a full Irish breakfast congealing to the
plate. The old guy took a step back and looked uncertain almost as if he
was going to turn away and leave. Then his shoulders slumped and he pushed
the door open. He kept his head down as he shuffled towards Karen and slid
in to the seat opposite.
'Who the hell is that?' Declan's anger made his voice guttural. The old
guy made to get up but Declan roughly pushed him back into his chair.
'Stay' he said to him like he was a dog.
'Declan you shouldn't have followed me. This doesn't concern you. '
Karen's voice was calm.
'You're going to be my wife' he hissed 'of course it concerns me. This is
not Adult literacy unless you hold your lessons in a cafe? So you have been
lying to me for weeks.' Anger flowed off of him in waves.
'This is' Karen paused 'someone that I used to know'
The old man was trembling, he began to rock back and forth and a low
moaning sound came from him. 'Shut up for Chrissake' Declan snapped.
But that only made things worse. Karen reached across the table to him
'Shush Dad. It's going to be OK. I'll take care of you. Shush now you
can't be moaning like that or they'll bar us leave and then where will we
Declan looked from Karen to the old empty shell of a man sitting opposite
her and back to Karen. 'you have got to be kidding me. He's your old man?
I thought you said he was dead'
'He was. I mean I thought he was. But then I found him.'
'What's with the coat?'
'I was wearing it the first time I met him, in January, and it gives him a
sense of foundation, makes it easier for him to remember who I am'
'Karen, I can't deal with this. I can't have some nut-job turning up on my
doorstep looking for help. What if we had kids? What if they turned out
like him. I'm sorry Karen but from now on you're just somebody that I used