By Maria Duffy. First published on Saturday 13th November 2010. 33 Comments so far.


Well it’s been a while since I’ve posted anything here.  It’s just so hard to keep up with everything, isn’t it?  I’m really busy at the moment, both in my personal life and in my writing one, but that’s a good thing.  I could moan about how there doesn’t seem to be a bottom to my ironing basket or the fact that my kids think I’m both a cash machine and a taxi service, but I won’t.  Nor will I moan about the fact that sometimes the only time I can find to write is when everyone else is sleeping and sometimes they’re actually all waking up by the time I’m contemplating going to bed!

So since I’m not moaning about anything, I’ll tell you something nice.  I spotted my 13 year old son writing a story the other day and I asked him if I could have a look.  I won’t tell you what I thought about it because you all know what I’m going to say!  I’m just going to post it here and let you all make up your own minds.  I’m writing it exactly as it appears in his copy – in his own words.  I’ve told him I’m posting it here so we’d be grateful for your comments.


It’s Christmas Eve.  The last light has long since diminished, only to be replaced by stars.  The yellow glow from the street lamps is casting an eerie light on the roads.  A soft white blanket is beginning to form as the snow falls heavily from the skies.

The cold sends tremors tingling down the backs of the occasional figure hurrying through the streets of Dublin city.  The steam from their steady breaths billows in front of them, instantly rising and disappearing into the night sky.

A woman steps out of a doorway into a desolate street.  She is greeted by a rush of cold air, pressing against her face.  Mary turns and waves goodbye as her friend, Jackie, stands watching from inside her house.  She rounds the corner and disappears.

Mary shivers as she walks through the narrow alleyway which seperates the main street from Jackie’s house and pulls up her jacket, covering her mouth, to stop the cold from getting into her bare skin.

As she continues through the back streets and alleyways towards her house, she hears the subtle crunch of footsteps coming from behind.  She nervously glances over her shoulder.   Nothing.  Pulling her jacket across her face, she quickens her pace. 

As she nears the end of the road, she catches a glimpse of a single figure hurring towards her out of the corner of her eye.  Fear rises up inside her and as she turns the corner, she breaks into a sprint.  She hears the man shout, but whatever he said is muffled by the wind.  The gap is closing between the pair and sweat begins to drip down Mary’s forehead.

A sense of relief cuts into her thoughts as she sees her house at the end of the next road.  But as these thoughts whizz around in her head, she fails to notice the lump of snow she’s approaching.  She trips and plants her face in the snow with a shrill scream.  She scrambles to get up and get away as quickly as possible.  Too late.  The man is standing in front of her, dressed in scraggy clothes with a long scar running down the side of his face.  Just as she’s about to scream, he smiles and hands her something.

‘My scarf,’ she says, quietly.  ‘How did you…’

He cuts her off.  ‘You dropped it back there.’

Mary blushes.  ‘I’m sorry.  Thank you.  It’s just…’

He interrupts again.  ‘No need to apologise; I shouldn’t have frightened you like that.’

Mary smiles.  ‘Well, thanks again.  Bye.’

She walks away, embarrassed knowing how wrong she had been and thinking what a nice man he was, following her on such a bad night.

And as the man walks away in the opposite direction, he smiles.  How easy had that been, he thinks to himself, as he roots through the contents of the purse he’s just slipped from her handbag!

The End

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