Archive for December, 2011

Waking up to Alice

Saturday, December 31st, 2011

At first it was blurry, then, gradually he began to realize it was his ceiling. He recognized the zot. The last of many spit balls wrapped in bent business cards he had thrown at it whenever boredom captured him. Tammy, his long time girlfriend, said it was immature for a thirty year old CGA, with a successful practice, to lie in bed throwing zots at the ceiling.

 Looking at it like that, he had to admit it might be a bit immature, but he was and he could live with it, the bit immature part that is. The successful practice part he wasn’t so sure of after he fired himself from Lowlands Land Development Corporation, his biggest client, whatever, crooks. And Tammy, well she dumped him for Al Fredrickson, a lawyer with his own firm, c’est la vie.

His head hurt, what did he do last night, couldn’t remember, pause, longer pause, a light came on and he remembered he went to O’Doul’s for some jazz. Other than that it was a blank, no, Mark and Peter were there and Peter brought a girl, Jennifer, yeah that was her name. Mark met someone, didn’t remember who.

We drank Champagne, I should never drink Champagne. Every time I do stupid boy shows up and I remember nothing he scolded. He was however, basing the thought on a well established history.

No, wait a minute, I met a girl. We went to the Shangri-La, the bar, what was her name, she was a killer chick he thought as some of the mist cleared way. He was excited, couldn’t remember too much, but she was, far and away the most beautiful woman who had ever paid any attention to him.

 “What was her name?” he asked himself rhetorically.

 “Alice” a sultry voice said to which he answered

 “Yes, Alice” and then came the instant realization that there was someone in bed with him and the world was filled with the scent of Isimiaki and the realization was instantly followed by the 90 degree spin of his body to find himself face to face with…Alice.

“Good Morning Bobby” the face said. A face made up of lips, rudy red lips, a perfect nose, perfect eyes, green eyes a foot deep, enhanced by perfect eyebrows. All of which were framed by thick raven black hair that on one side spilled over a shoulder and flowed down to the pillow behind her and other side flowing down to cover her neck, shoulder and breast and still making its way to the pillow. Hair, lots of hair.

 Oh yeah he thought as he began to remember in a big hurry.”

 “It really happened, didn’t it?” he asked.

“Oh yes Bobby, it really happened” she said reaching out and touching his face, before letting her hand fall away to trace the outline of his neck and shoulder.

“I was drinking Champagne, wasn’t I?” he asked.

“Oh yes Bobby, we were drinking Champagne, expensive Champagne. You bought a round for the house” Alice said.

Lying there feeling her touch and overwhelmed by her beauty he couldn’t care less about the expense, he was just unable to believe she was here with him, so he asked “How did you end up with me or even better how did I end up with you?”

“Well” she said with a smile that made every hair on his body stand on end and realize he was naked. “You just walked up to me and said Hi, my name is Robert, how do you like me so far? What was I to do with a pitch like that but say “I don’t know, keep talking and here we are. You’re quite the talker Bobby.”

“I guess I was really celebrating. What, was I celebrating?” he asked.

Removing her hand from his shoulder, which immediately made him regret asking, she reached behind her to pick up a shinny silver tiara that said “Happy New Year.” And then, in one single motion firmly affixed the tiara in her luscious raven black hair, making her even more attractive, if that was possible.

“Oh yeah, New Years, I tend to go a bit overboard on New Years Eve” he said.

“You certainly do Bobby, especially paying the young bar maid $100.00 to get it. How did you put that, oh yes, so I wouldn’t be without a hat on New Years Eve, after all, you always wanted to kiss a princess. You’re such a romantic Bobby.”

Then she leaned forward and kissed him and not with some innocent peck, but with something spilling over in passion. Now he remembered, now he really remembered as he wrapped his arms around her and crushed her to him.

“Oh yes” he breathed “I really remember”

 To which Alice replied “Stop talking Bobby.”

David Hutchison – Writer



All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the written prior permission of the author.


Happy Christmas

Thursday, December 22nd, 2011

Happy Christmas

She watched him as he reached out to touch the giant Douglas Fir. The tree itself simply dwarfed him. He needed to be three or four men to reach around it. But sitting there on the bench she realized it was about touching. More, there was a reverence in his touch, as if he were paying homage. Homage seemed appropriate considering it was Christmas day.

There were no hurried movements, his fingers gilding over the rough bark, slipping into the deep crevasses of dark brown, and the mottled green moss. It wasn’t as if it were the first time, more a practiced habit built over many visits. His sad face seemed to relieve itself of whatever burden he was carrying.

He stepped back and lifting his head, looked up trying to see the top, he was to close for that, still he took his time, nothing hurried. Then looking back at the base of the giant, he touched it again, almost like saying goodbye to an old friend. And at his age, there had been a lot of saying goodbye.

His hand reached to the corner of his eye and wiped away a tear. He seemed tired and walked over to the benches in front of the bandstand to sit down. She sensed a ritual of something he had preformed many times before.

She to, in her own way was satisfying a ritual, sitting here watching the people and in particular the children as they ran screaming through the playground. In the last year of his life, she and her husband Sam had sat here many times watching, listening and laughing. Even with his pending demise they had shared the moments.

At 67, they had shared forty years and forty Christmas days together. This was her first one alone. Fortunately there were children, grandchild, plus all the sundry in-laws and out-laws to see over the Christmas holidays. Still, without him, she would be alone, without her best friend, lover and companion. This would be the first of many she imagined.

She looked back to the old man. Even with the cries of the children and their parents, as elders it was just them surrounded by the giants of the park. She watched as he stood and stretched. The stretch seemed of a much younger man than the craggy face revealed. “Health is so important at our age” she thought.

He had a familiar look as if she had seen him in the park before, then she remembered. He had been here several times with the tall brunette. She remembered her hair and was sure the perfection of the magnificent mane had had some assistance in maintaining its colour.

Vanity is such a thin vail” In spite of such an incriminating thought a smile crossed her face.

She was a bit surprised as he turned and looked her way. Could he be looking at me, she wondered?

Oh for god’s sake Hillary you’re just imagining it” she thought. But sure enough, he was, he smiled and gave a small wave. Without thinking of any implied consequence she returned his smile and in answer to the wave, a brief nod. No further acknowledgement was needed as he made his way towards her.

He seemed a bit bold considering how distant he had appeared when standing before the giant Douglas. In a moment he was standing in front of her saying “Merry Christmas.”

Without any hesitation on her part she looked up from the bench and said “Merry Christmas.”

“Joseph” he said by way of introduction.

“Hillary” she returned.

“Any of yours amongst the pack?” he asked.

“No, their all up on Grouse trying out new ski’s” she said.

“And yours” she asked.

“No” he replied, “they’re spread out across the country and as it’s my first Christmas without Mary, I thought I would take the day to myself. I fly out tomorrow for several weeks of visiting” he said.

She saw sadness return to his face. “Mine to” she replied.

“I guess that makes us comrades in loss” he said, in a tone matching the expression

“Yes” she said turning away to look at the children.

“It’s a lovely day to be in the park at this time of year. The children’s excitement adds so much to it” he said following her look back to them.

“Yes” she replied “Santa does that.”

Neither were in a hurry as they watched. Without invitation, and more of where they were, he sat down on the bench beside her. Watching the children took the place of any required conversation.  She didn’t know or cared how long they had sat there in silence, it was just nice, to sit with a man, in the park.

She noticed the shadows seemed to be getting longer, when suddenly he said, “I hear the eggnog at Tim’s is pretty good this year.”

“Yes, I’ve heard the rumor” she said.

“I was thinking I might go over and try it out. Would you like to join me” he asked.

It was not something she would normally do with a stranger, well not a complete stranger. Still, she was unsure until somewhere inside she felt a touch of warmth, almost as if Sam was speaking to her “Go on, don’t be a stick in the mud.”

“Yes, that would be nice” she said.

He stood and afforded his hand. She took it and joined him. Then, came his arm, which she took and they began to walk. Then another surprise as he softly sang “And so this is Christmas”

“Lennon fan” she asked

“Yes” he said “it’s my favourite.”

And together they sang as they walked.

“and so this is Christmas

and what have we done

another year older

and a new one has just begun

we hope you had fun

the near and the dear ones

the old and the young”

“A very merry Christmas

and a happy New Year

let’s hope it’s a good one

without any fear”

Merry Christmas everyone!

 A short story by David Hutchison



All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted, in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise without the written prior permission of the author.



Saturday, December 17th, 2011

Sun light faded to dusk, that time of uncertainty, that space between light and dark, of seeing things within the mist. A mist supported by the chilling air of autumn as it rushed down the street invoking a sense of evil.

She pulled the light summer coat tight around her. The click of her high heels echoed down an empty street of the old warehouse district. The side street, blocked by construction left her no choice, but to continue down the long street.

It held a lurid feel. After 6pn everything shut down and the street became a haven to the night people. Dark people, doing dark things in dark doorways and with each and every step they seemed to be getting darker as night brushed dusk aside.

The echo of her heels became louder announcing her presence to all the eyes hidden within the crevices of the buildings and their austere facades. Light disappeared creating a world of outline. The tired old street lights on the corners did little to change their appearance. There was no deity here to protect her. She walked alone amongst the strange and eerie.

The pallor of emptiness scared her. She was sure she could hear footsteps, footsteps other than hers. She quickened her pace as did the following footsteps. Her fear now irrefutable, left a sour taste. What was she to do? There was nothing she could do, but hurry to the end of the block.

Out of the corner of her eye she caught a glimpse of a man. A tall slender man in a trench coat, the belt tied tightly around his waist. His hands pushed deep into the pockets and the small fedora hid his face. His pace matched hers. She wanted to give way to fear and run, but what if he ran too. What if he was faster? What if he had a knife? She had a morbid fear of men and knifes ever since she had watched  Nightmare on Elm Street. To this day she hated herself for it.

She neared the end of the street, less than half a block away. She ducked her head as the cold wind rushed down to chill her again. A cold, even the rising body temperature caused by the exertion of her pace could not repel. A fearful cold.

Anxiety stripped her naked as up ahead a large man turned the corner, he seemed to stumble as if he were drunk. He stopped and stood still blocking the sidewalk. What was she to do? She couldn’t cross the street for the mysterious man in the trench coat had come abreast of her. She couldn’t turn back. There was no place of safety there. There was no safety anywhere. Was death stalking her?

She slowed her pace, opened her purse and pulled out her tail comb. At least this way she had a weapon to defend herself with. She crushed the teeth of the comb into her palm. Pain pumped the adrenalin. She straightened her stance. A car sat adjacent to the large man. He had turned to look at the building beside him as if he were lost.

Then without looking she stepped off the curb and moved to the car as if it were her own. She had forgotten the man across the street, when suddenly he too was at the car. He looked at her. He had keys in his hand. It was his car. What was she to do?

“Oh, I’m sorry, I thought this was my sister’s car” was all she could say.

“Could I give you a lift” he asked.

The large man on the sidewalk turned to look at them. Up close he looked furious and angry. The man offering her a ride seemed nice by comparison.

“Yes” she said as he walked her around to open the passenger door. It closed behind her. He got in the other side and as the car started the doors locked.

She returned his smile and began to relax from the horrors of her dilemma. She never saw the blood on his sleeve.

David Hutchison, writer