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WordPlay - February 2012

31 Jan 2012

Docklands Writers brings you a serial story, each month’s instalment written by a different writer from the group.  You can real the whole ongoing story at http://www.docklandsnews.com.au/columns/list/category/word-play/
We trust you enjoy it; feedback is always welcome as are membership enquiries to (JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)

1.  RENOS by Sonya Robinson

Tom squatted in the kitchen in front of the freshly-replastered wall. He tried to convince himself it was flawless and ended up staring at it so intently that it seemed to pulse.

Earlier that afternoon he had taken a hammer to this thin strip of wall squashed between the tiny pantry cupboard and doorway leading into the hall. He then spent the rest of the afternoon desperately trying to fix it before Kate got home. It was nearly six o’clock.

He heard the sharp scraping of a key in the lock then her voice, “Hey! I’m home.”

He looked down the hall from where he crouched, the last few shafts of sunlight streaming past him from the kitchen windows. He felt cold, his work-shirt gritty and damp. “Hey!” he managed, then quickly stood up and stepped into the hallway blocking the kitchen doorway. Kate screwed up her nose at his stench and kissed him.

“Weekend at last, today was so foul I could have walked out of that office for good.”  She smiled and raised her shopping bags, “Curry from that place in Rakaia Way, I need comfort food.”

“Great,” he reached out, “I’ll unpack it.”

“How did the pantry go?” she asked then looked past him and frowned. “Why is the wall still there?”

“Slight problem, we have to rethink extending the pantry.”

“No!  Why?”

“It’s … too difficult.” He was struggling. All afternoon he had thought of reasons, lies to tell her about the patched-up wall, but none came to him now.

Kate shoved past him and pressed a finger into the moist wall accusingly.  “The wall cavity isn’t as big as we thought.” Tom closed his eyes as he lied.

“Any extra space is better than none. Show me,” she demanded. She was being a bitch but didn’t care. Her head ached from the arguments she’d had that day. Tom didn’t move. She grabbed the trowel from the bench and thrust it brutally into the soft plaster. The childish destruction felt good.

“Oh great! Well done Kate, happy?” Tom rarely got mad, but now his face was red with angry frustration. He had lost and there was nothing he could do to stop her finding out.

Kate continued her attack, plaster crumbling to the floor.  “Tom, what the hell is that?” She had become suddenly still, her face unsure and wary. She moved to reach the trowel in further into the hole.

Tom grabbed her elbow, “Christ, don’t touch it! Just leave it.”

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