The Cost of Air

Everything was for sale.  Everything!  Charlie had to pay $2.00 every time he used his toilet and $3.00 when he entered his apartment.  That was how things had always been for Charlie, for everyone - that was life.  Charlie earned well, and he enjoyed shelling out on life’s necessities.  Scanning the bank pass just to pay $1.00 to sleep was frustrating.  It limited napping.  But it was fine for Charlie, he earned enough to pay for life.  Well, he did…  Then the summer recession hit and Charlie lost his job at the hospital.  Deep cuts - it cuts deep.  Once his job was gone - Charlie struggled to pay for anything. He had savings of course. Enough for him to pay the $2.50 eating charge (that’s not the cost of the food mind you, it was just the eating charge).  And there was enough to pay the 2 cents oxygen fee - the most important cost.  The cost we all broke our necks to pay.  But how long would the cash last?  His balance that summer was $40,500.00.  A healthy balance. Charlie can just

Mysteries of the Village Part 1 - The Perfect Wife [Audio Adaptation]

The Perfect Wife  This story is set in the village of Redbush, a strange place, with a strange past. Outsiders need help explaining why Redbush is so peculiar although many have tried. The story goes that the spirits of a Roman massacre, thousands of years ago, have persisted in corrupting the heart of this small English town.  But the town remains strange and elusive. This channel hopes to shed light on some of the strange goings-on in Redbush, Surrey and give you an insight into the resident’s psyche…  Welcome to Mysteries of the Village.  Andrea loved to cook for Robert, date night was her favourite night of the week, and Robert loved to be cooked for.  Andrea hit the local supermarket. She took the 4 by 4 today. It looked strange in the village, the biggest car in town, but after all - Andrea had the biggest house in town.  When Andrea walked into the shop, she felt like a million pounds. Her hair was tied up with a hairband, she had on her finest Chanel and she’d recently lost fif

Family Photo

The father stood at the front of the family photo with his chest out and beamed a huge smile. The kids were seated in front of the father on little stools.  His wife Deborah was at his side, and he had his arm around her, tightly gripping her waist.  The camera was an automatic one that the father had set before quickly running to get in the frame.  Click. Big smiles.  The father walked over to the camera.  Just one more.  Click. Big smiles.  It was done. A perfect family portrait. Get this mocked up in a frame and he can take it with him wherever he goes.  The father put the kids to bed and then put his wife in front of the TV. It was Desperate Housewives re-runs. Her favourite.  The father could hear Gabi laying into her husband on the TV. It made the father smile.  Don’t worry dear, I’ll do the dishes. I’ll load the washing. You just watch TV.  The father was a perfect husband. He did everything he said he would. A real whizz around the house.   The house was sparkling by the time h

The Missing Waiter

Detective Taylor sat in the back of the restaurant eating his shish kebab. Each bite was delicious, nourishing, tender and moist. The meat swirled around in his mouth in sumptuous bites.  Riz was the restaurant owner. He brought the food out for the detective and said immediately:  ‘For the police, no charge,’  Detective Taylor and Detective Paulson were there on business. But what would it hurt with a spot of lunch?  Just a bit of shish and then back to business.  ‘From what I understand, the missing party Brad Mayson worked here,’  They clarified with Riz.  ‘Yes, yes. Such a shame. He go missing. We all miss him. Such a shame,’ Riz answered in broken English. Between each bite, the police scribbled in their notebooks and then washed the kebab down with a cold beer.  ‘Such a young man. Good worker.’  Riz was empathetic, convincing and sincere. Taylor was impressed by Riz. He had come to this country as an immigrant, barely spoke the language and now he owned the finest Turkish restaur

The Tea Party

  Crystal’s favourite time of the day was her tea parties with Rodney and Patrick. Crystal would get the little plastic cups out. The tea was imaginary and they’d all sip the tea with their pinky fingers up in the air. Rodney was happy to play along, it didn’t bother him, it was only an hour of his day - and he got to go upstairs and out of the basement for a time. The basement was damp and dark. Patrick hated the tea parties. Patrick was a stubborn sort that did everything through gritted teeth. But he held on, not wanting to upset a little girl like Crystal, nor upset himself too much. The tea parties weren’t going to last forever. Crystal might get bored of Patrick and ask somebody else to do it or she’d simply outgrow them, like all good girls… Well, the tea parties did come to an end on that wet Wednesday evening, for Patrick. They were on their crossed legs and sat around the miniature tables with their miniature cups in their hands, pretending to sip from the empty plastic. Rodn

Mother of the Year

MOTHER OF THE YEAR When Rachel Gregory was born, her mother felt herself drowning in hatred towards the baby. The father had just done a runner, upped and left like the coward Iris Gregory knew him to be.  Iris would look at Rachel and see the dad, then the hatred would fill her up like a newly pulled pint and she’d suffocate right up to her throat.  The dad was Brian.  She didn’t know where he went or why he went. Well, the why was obvious. Iris called herself headstrong (what she meant was high-strung).  Iris was bitter. Iris felt anger towards everything and everyone. And Brian couldn’t hack it anymore.  Iris went around to Brian’s mum the week he left, held the baby in her arms, and looked her ex-mother-in-law straight in the face: ‘Look what your waster son has left me with,’ Iris said with spit coming out her lips.  He joined the French Foreign Legion.  Apparently.  That’s what she told people anyway.  She didn’t know what that meant when Brian’s mother said it, but it sounded be