Parminder Summon won first place in the Flash fiction section of the University Centre Peterborough Literary Competition, with his short story- Discovery.
You felt you should have felt something, but feeling was denied to you, so instead you just
experienced a gaping void, a complex black hole that would have befuddled Hawking. You had
physical sensation such as being cold or hot, but emotional or spiritual feelings remained alien. You
thought of Tobias, Sanballat and Gesham and the thunderstorm you had called down on them. They
had it coming. You didn’t brood, but the hooked sense of remembrance kinda gnawed away at you.
It was the injustice really. Who were they to stand in your way? That thought circulated inside your
very being until the burning injustice grew and you knew where that would lead. But in time, not
now, you counselled yourself.
It was twilight, that part of the day you came alive. Daylight was too harsh and darkness
could be frightening (but not to you), but twilight with its mellow shades restored you somewhat.
You recalled that some people were affected by the moon’s phases. How odd, you thought, that a
body thousands of miles away could affect anyone’s mood. And then you thought of the tides, twice
a day, pulled in and out by lunar force. Well, if that much liquid could be pulled to and fro twice a
day and we were mostly water, it could be possible you reasoned.
This wasn’t idle thought. You knew what the beach you had left behind would reveal,
maybe today or eventually. The sea would give up its dead. An over inquisitive dog walker would be
alerted by their pet to a shape, just a dead mass really and then the area would be taped off, tents
constructed and the forensics would begin. But they wouldn’t find anything. The sea would offer up
a body but all the evidence would be long washed away. All that CSI nonsense would provide no
leads. You knew that because you had taken pains to get rid of anything that would connect the
body to anyone.
In any case, you were now over two hundred miles from the beach, in another country, yet
again starting another existence in an anonymous region, renting an apartment on the edge of town.
This country was so vast it could easily contain any number of people who wished to disappear. The
checks for renting the flat were cursory because you paid well. Six months in advance. Now you
were a writer, seeking a retreat and that seemed plausible to the agent, though he didn’t even seem
to be listening. Money has a way of dulling the senses.
So, what now, with a new start? To be honest, it didn’t feel new since you couldn’t feel
anything, you had no emotions. It just felt endless, this drifting through and part of you hoped you
would be caught, helped and rehabilitated, whilst you knew it was nemesis that awaited. When
nemesis came, though, would you even feel it?