The very bad detective. Episode 3.

December 26, 2017 at 10:09 am | Posted in Short Story, Uncategorized | 2 Comments
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9404949_2147e67e2a Retro Bar Crop

Episode 3. Food flight.

[Read from Episode 1.]

The dame and the detective exited via the window and clambered onto the fire escape.

Rushing down the ancient stairs, they dislodged a cloud of rust flakes that fluttered like deceptively dangerous Sultana Bran with extra iron and no sultanas.

The stairs went all the way to the bottom, but the detective, with an eye for theatre, flung himself onto a dumpster overloaded with soft-looking garbage bags.

This was an illusion, however, as the bags were filled with flourescent tubes illegally discarded by a mining firm seeking to greenwash its operations.

The dame contented herself by riding one of those drop-down ladders that often appear in these scenes.

She led the detective to the tavern across the road. Called the Metal Workers’ Bar, it also had a grill.

Inside, the lights were low. The detective hit his head on one and shards flew.

The barkeep proffered a box and told the detective to take his pick. He fumbled for a red globe, which only made things worse.

‘These lights are crazy; why don’t you turn them up?’

The barkeep snarled in the darkness. ‘I like downlights. And I haven’t painted the ceiling.’

The dame interposed herself and addressed the detective.

‘You want a drink?’

‘I’m not sure.’

‘What do you mean?’

‘I may want more.’

‘Sure; let’s start a tab.’

‘But I hate gambling.’

Later, in a dim booth, the dame watched the detective wipe drops from his hand. He felt her gaze and realised it wasn’t Andrew.

‘My beverage is leaking.’

‘You did ask for a shot glass.’

‘That barkeep calls it like it is.’

‘Perhaps you could drink the damn thing, instead of fiddling with it.’

‘I don’t like your tone, Ms Sutherland.’

She coloured.

‘Nor do I like how this is developing.’

‘Perhaps you’d prefer another booth.’

The detective reached for a grimy laminated menu.

‘I’m hungry. Shall we try the grill?’

The dame glanced with disdain. ‘How’re the reviews?’


‘Fine. I’ll have the debrecener.’

A young waitress appeared.

‘Hi, I’m Debra. I like magic.’

The detective smiled. ‘Hello Debra; we’ll have the debrecener, please.’

The waitress turned reddish-orange. ‘I’m afraid she’s not here.’


‘Debra senior.’

‘You name your sausages?’

‘No, that’s my mum.’

‘Your … mother is a sausage?’

‘No, she cooks them. That’s why you can’t have one. She’s missing.’

‘So, you haven’t … seen her.’


A customer entered the tavern, broke a light and used the spittoon.

The dame stacked the menus. ‘Thanks, Debra; we’ll have fish cakes with potato gems.’

‘I’m sorry; that’s on the kids’ menu.’

The dame looked around the squalid space. ‘You get a lot of kids in here?’


‘So you’ve probably got bags of potato gems laid on – with no takers.’

The waitress suppressed a sob. ‘It’s … true.’

The dame flexed the menus, striating them white.

‘Debra, honey, please get our damn order so we can get out of this dump.’

‘But the policy … ‘

‘There’ll be a big tip in it for you.’

‘Well, maybe … OK.’

The dame beamed. ‘Thanks, honey; and if anyone asks, we’re just a couple of big kids. Lookin’ at you.’

The detective made a sad face and the dame whirled.

‘Oh for Christ’s sake; what now?’

‘I’d rather have sea shanties … ‘

The barkeep signalled lights out.

If you enjoyed this post, you may wish to:

Your smallest kindness will keep me going strong. With many thanks, Paul.

Pic by gwen.

Stay tuned for Episode 4!







Thanks to a Royal Commission

December 15, 2017 at 12:45 pm | Posted in Poem | 2 Comments
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The bed is for sale now.

The wallpaper’s gone.

The window is bigger.

The lights are all on.


The monster is missing,

But that’s no big deal.

He’s down at the big house,


Copping a feel.


The nightmares are leaving.

And so is the smell.

This room of my childhood.

No longer my cell.


The old moving finger,

That many pains writ,

Now pens a fresh panel:


Enough of this shit!


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