Saturday, March 18, 2023

Micro Fiction March Day 18


So, most of the writing challenges I've set are either vague instructions (2nd person train journey) or are titles that are taken from songs. But, for today's challenge, I'd just taken a word that randomly popped into my head - carapace. Now, that was all well and good a few weeks ago when I was creating a writing challenge, but today I had to sit down and work out what the hell kind of a story (in 300 words or less) it would be possible to make with that title. And for a few hours, I must tell you dear reader, I did not have the slightest clue. Indeed, for a while, I was thinking this might be the day where I failed. And then this idea arrived. Perhaps a slight nod to Kafka. Or perhaps I'm finally going a little bonkers. Either way, this is certainly one the most surreal things I can remember writing...


"Well, in my professional opinion," said the doctor, with a thoughtful stroke of his chin,  "you're becoming a tortoise."

"Right," I said, stretching the word out slowly,  "and do you think I could maybe get a second opinion?"

It had started as a patchwork rash on my back, but the skin had rapidly become dry and rough and begun to harden soon thereafter. I’d tried to fight back, moisturising the crap out of it, but it had only got worse and worse, to the point that it had increasingly begun to feel like my whole back was hardening.

“Well, yes,” replied the doctor, “but I think they’re only going to tell you the same.”

I couldn’t work out whether my doctor was insane or just had a really dry sense of humour.

“Look,” I said, by this point more than a little exasperated, “is there anything you can do?”

“Well, there is an injection I could give you,” said the doctor.

“And that will help?”

“Oh, certainly,” said the doctor, with a somewhat  absent-minded frown.

“Then let’s do it,” I said, “I’m ready to try anything.”

He stood up and took a small bottle from a cabinet on the wall, then peeled a sterile syringe from a packet and drew up a small amount of yellow liquid from the bottle, walking towards me with a thin smile.

“This might sting a little,” he said.

The needle felt like it was injecting napalm into my veins. My face contorted in agony. It felt like my whole body was being squeezed and compressed.

“What, the..fuck,” I screamed.

“This will accelerate the process,” said the doctor calmly as I writhed on the floor, “You see, my daughter’s always wanted a tortoise.”

I tried to run but I was already far too slow.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

That last sentence...