I should be Writing

It was supposed to snow today. The weather report said there was 100% chance of rain in 22 minutes while I was having lunch. It didn’t rain. It didn’t snow. I watched for it.

New people have moved into the house opposite. They’ve installed a log burner and new double glazing and I can see what they’re watching on their large TV, something with Richard Hammond in. I watch for a while, trying to work out what the changing pictures mean – the sky, a shot of Hammond, a landscape, another shot of Hammond.

Above their house I can see the top of a tree, bare branches thrashing wildly in the wind. When there are magpies in the tree, I count them. Once I saw thirteen. My counting song in A Tiding of Magpies only goes up to ten. Today there are none.

The sky is the colour of cigarette ash. I stare at it, wondering where the snow fell if not here.

The world outside my window is behind me, as I sit at my desk, but I turn to watch it anyway.

A car rumbles down the road breaking the silence.

I should be writing.

Published by suttope

Pete W Sutton is a writer and editor. His two short story collections – A Tiding of Magpies and The Museum for Forgetting – were shortlisted for Best Collection in the British Fantasy Awards in 2017 & 2022 respectively. His novel – Seven Deadly Swords – was published by Grimbold Books. He has edited several short story anthologies and is the editor for the British Fantasy Society Horizons fiction magazine.

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