Bert Moves On


This one took second place in June’s ZeroFlash contest, which was on the theme of board games. You can find it at this link, but you have to scroll down a lot to get to it so I’ve reproduced it below.

When Maggie died, Bert became lonely. Tuesdays and Thursdays had been the worst. Their traditional board game nights had been his favourite nights of the week but, with the gentle squabbling over Scrabble and bickering over backgammon a thing of the past, they’d become the hardest and the emptiest.

But as time had moved on, so had he, at least a little. The long evenings with no-one to talk to were over. He’d found himself a social life and now there was always a crowd at his house. There was Bill – Baldy Bill, as Bert called him, but he didn’t seem to mind. He was a good egg, was Bill. There was David. Handsome chap, David. He was certain Maria kept making eyes at him. There was Paul, who’d always peer thoughtfully at the world through those wire-rimmed glasses, looking for all the world like he knew a secret that no-one else was in on. And there were others too. Bert always had someone to talk to.

Tonight, though, Bert felt tired. He excused himself to Robert, which he felt bad about because the poor fellow was looking a bit glum, and asked the throng if they’d keep it down while he went upstairs to bed. ‘I’ll leave the light on for you, folks,’ he added.

A fantastic bunch, he thought, as he slid into the now too-large bed and turned away from the dent in the mattress that marked where Maggie used to lie. Just fantastic. He clicked off the lamp and, as usual, completely failed to sleep.

Downstairs, the Guess Who characters stared at the walls.


6 thoughts on “Bert Moves On

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