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  • Writer's pictureKayleigh Willis

'Innocent Wishes' Flash by Emma Mather

“She flies like a bird,” he feels the power at the ball of his foot, at the base of his spine. A slight tremble in his hands. Everything he’s ever wished for; beauty, power and cream leather seats.

Almost home.

Seven days away; a slow roll of dry asphalt.

In the park, she tips her face to the sky. Her bright blue eyes, searching for the bird. What’s it like to feel the air touch your wings? Arms out stretched she runs barefoot across the grass.

Fly, little bird, fly.

“Come on Ellie, time to go,” her mother’s voice breaks the spell, “Ahh, shoo magpie, shoo away,”

“Mammy, No,” Ellie salutes, “You should know better, Mammy,”

“Agh Ellie. It’s superstitions,”

“If you had one wish, what would it be?”

Her mother is stuffing the picnic blanket into her basket, dancing the straps of her shoes across her feet, “For a kiss, a kiss from you”.

Tender soft lips touch her cheek.

“Rubbish,” a wide grin through crooked teeth, “I wish I can fly,” crossing fingers behind her back.

The road between home and the park is silent. Blinding shiny lakes on the tarmac, heat streams like wisps from genes tails.

“The floor is lava,” Ellie cries, her hand slips from her mother’s grasp as she hops on her toes from paving stone to paving stone.

“Not too far ahead,”

Almost home.

He looks in his mirrors, the world behind him retreats. He laughs, “a disappearing mirror,” Ellie rocks on her toes, pivots and spins.

He looks back from his mirror. There is no sound, he thinks, later. Like magic. Black magic. Just a flash of golden hair and her favourite red shoes.

Ellie is reaching through the air, arms outstretched, fingertips touching the clouds.

She looks down, she sees her mother’s eyes, dark pin pricks in a pale face. She feels herself rise, higher and higher. She see’s her father’s mouth open in a perfect circle, like a fish. “Nice new car, Daddy,” she tries to call, but all she can think is -

I’m flying, I’m flying.

All Rights. Emma Mather.

Emma Mather was once a solicitor, an event manager, a waitress a stage hand. She has a first class degree in English Literature and Theatre Studies and has been shortlisted as part of the Hastings Literary Festival Short Story Award. She writes short stories, flash fiction and is currently working on her first novel. Her other passion is cold water swimming.

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