Tag Archives: Photo fiction



Showered and fragranced, she slips into well-chosen clothes; clothes with the perfect mix of sexy and casual, as if it’s only by chance that she looks that way. She smoothes down her hair and applies the right amount of make-up – not too much; she doesn’t want her look to appear contrived. She checks in the mirror, and sees the reflection of a naturally alluring woman with a lovely figure. Her disguise is perfect. She leaves the house, and walks slowly down the road, with the merest suggestion of a wiggle, a carefully designed expression of uncretainty on her face.

She catches the eye of every man she passes. They look interested, but always, something startles them, and they recoil in horror, before making a wide berth – sometimes even crossing the road to avoid walking past her. She’s getting hungry; it’s been days since she’s managed to lure anybody back to her lair.

Presently, clouds cover the sun. Shadows fade. She spots a meaty giant of a man walking her way. He sees her lost-little-girl look, and pauses to ask her if she is OK. She gives him her well-worn story about only having moved into the area the previous day, and not being able to remember her way home; it always works. He asks for her address, and offers to walk her there.

Her sensitive nose picks out aftershave, lemon soap, coffee, fresh bread, ham, the ingredients of coleslaw, an encouraging tang of lust, and knows she’ll have no trouble. Beneath those ugly scents is the delicious perfume of blood type A, rhesus positive; her favorite flavour.

She sighs in anticipation of her feast.

Written for Michelle’s Photo-Fiction Challenge

©Jane Paterson Basil

Nicotene kiss


So long ago… an image of clear, cascading water… green leaves and virginal blossom… a happy couple with fresh faces… those tempting words, “Cool, fresh Consulate, cool as a mountain stream.”

The advertisement beckoned temptingly from magazines, forever whispering in my ear, suggesting that I, too, could find myself scrambling up mountains, sharing jokes and smiles with a male soul-mate, if only I smoked menthol cigarettes…

And you, the truth behind those pretty lies, your handsome face half-hidden by the shadow of night-time trees in a city park, smoke from your cigarette curling upwards, forming a half-frame which drew me ever back to your sensuous lips. How could I resist the offer of one of your narrow, nicotene-filled tubes, so stylishly flicked from the interior of the pack? My foolish heart lurched at the intimacy of your lighter igniting the end of my cigarette…

Those times I spent with you, in the corner of a cloudy nightclub, drinking doubles, while I smoked like a grown-up, never once smudging my make-up, feeling, oh, so sophisticated… I was young, and in love… We never climbed mountains, meeting only at night, under those city lights sometimes sneaking into the park, to make the only kind of love I had ever known. Afterwards you would want a drink… a cigarette… soon, so did I…

I lie here, in the slippered silence of this hospice, listening to my rasping breath, feeling the alien growth take over my lungs… I press a button on the gadget in my hand, and feel the swift relief of morphine haze. If only you were here with me, but I’m on my way to you…

I wish we could share one last nicotene kiss…

Written for Michelle’s Photo-Fiction Challenge.

©Jane Paterson Basil

The ferris wheel



They say that some nights, if you stand downwind, you can hear the screams of those children who never went home from the fair.

It happened way back in the ‘forties. The first time, it seemed like a tragic mishap; the second, a terrible coincidence.

All the same, word got around, and kids were too frightened to ride on that ferris wheel. The proprietor swore that all the bolts were tightened, but people were still scared. Teenagers woud dare each other to try it, and the bravest of them paid their money and climbed on board, alighting safely at the end of the ride.

After a while confidence picked up, and a couple of ten-year olds went on it. The car broke away and crashed to the ground, like the other times. One boy was killed instantly; the other died later from his injuries, bringing the number of fatalities to eight.

A journalist had been following the story, digging up dirt. Turned out the ferris wheel guy had lost a son. This lad had foolishly climbed the big wheel, to the top. He lost his footing and fell, breaking his neck.

The journalist reckoned the father was reeking his vengence on innocent children. He alerted the police. An enquiry began. The day the police went to the fair to arrest the man, he scaled the wheel, and leapt to his death.

They say that some nights, if you creep closer to the sound of screaming children, and look up at that rusting car, right at the top, you may see a misty man sitting in it, hugging a wispy young boy close, expressions of love and joy written across both of their faces.

Written for Michelle’s Photo fiction #59

©Jane Paterson Basil

Daddy’s little girl


he stretched and ripped her private flesh,
to fit the filthy image in his loins
wiped away the baby chuckles
besmirched her childish games and toys

who but he may dress his special girl
in the white of a virgin fantasy
make her his little bride
at another secret father’s day party?
who but he who shot the seed
may relieve his incestuous ache
against her embrionic womb?
and who but she has the means?

later, in the neighbours garden
as his traitorous fluid leaks down her legs
she seeks her small rebellion

a flash of cleansing flame
a choking glow that she, at least, has chosen
a few fetid intakes of breath
imitating freedom

there are faster, kinder entries
to liberty or death’s escape
but she is too young to know the words
or the ways
and too old to wipe the slate

Written for Michelle‘s Photo Fiction #56

©Jane Paterson Basil