Featured

Short Story Time: Folding Knives and Blue Eyes

Short Story Time: Folding Knives and Blue Eyes

This short story is inspired by a photo taken by Chris from the Milford Street blog. If you don’t know his photographs, I encourage you to go them check out in his posts! It was his recent Old Timers post that caught my eye, featuring the image below. Thanks again Chris for letting me use your photo for inspiration and permission to include it here.

Pocket knives at a flee market

Folding knives. So many stories to tell. Like this short story. Photo via Christopher O’Keefe, Old Timer, used with his permission.

Folding Knives and Blue Eyes

The knives were folded on the table in front of Jude and, like them, she was without words. Where was the one that her grandpa had owned? None of these were calling out to help her.

She felt a dig into her left side.

“Oof,” she said, and her hands instinctively covered the sore spot. Looking over, she met intense blue eyes surrounded by wrinkles. The woman’s look was stern, and she muttered something under breath that smelled mildly of sardines. Turning back to the table, she shoved Jude, this time with her hip.

“…my spot…” Jude heard but couldn’t make out any other words with the so many other voices around calling out prices and asking questions about how old was this lamp or what type of crystal was that?

Jude’s her bare arm met cold leather as her body swayed slightly to the right, off balance. She noted it belonged to a jacket that belonged to a man who she didn’t want to mess with, from his thick gray beard to the tattoo running down his neck of a skeleton’s body that seemed to extend under the collar of his coat.

He didn’t even look her way. Jude tried to concentrate again on the knives. None of these had the right color of the handle. The size. The memories. She hadn’t realized there were so many kinds of folding knives.

This will be impossible, she realized, and slowly stepped back, turning around without looking up, only to bang into a chest that hit her forehead with all the force of a boxing glove. Her heart sank even lower – though she hadn’t thought it possible – as she realized it was the leather jacket. How had he moved without her realizing it?

“You’ll not get far if you don’t know what you’re looking for,” he said with a thick accent she didn’t recognize. Her eyes remained on the jacket, which somehow seemed safer than the skinless body ironically inked on his flesh.

“She doesn’t need your help, thank you very much,” said a woman’s voice sternly from back at the table. “She’s with me,” the female continued.

Jude didn’t know what to say so instead she nodded toward the leather. Feeling a pull on her right arm, she was guided around the gruff man and out of the crowd with little time to see anything other than flashes of stripes, corners of tables, and voices quoting numbers and quantities.

“You’ll want to stay out of his way. He’s a regular here.”

Jude didn’t nod but instead looked at the blue eyes for a second time. She blinked a few times. Was this woman a mirage?

“I think this is what you’re looking for,” the bright pink lips said, and the woman held out to the girl a folded knife with a black handle featuring three thick gold stripes across it.

“I—”

The woman’s white curls bounced as she quickly took Jude’s hand at her side and held it, sticking the folded knife in it. “It was his. Your grandpa’s. Eric.”

As she said his name, her voice took a more tender tone.

How did- Jude’s thoughts were cut short by the woman walking back into the crowd, her crocheted pink sweater soon getting lost among them. Looking down at her hand, she studied the knife. She finally allowed herself to breathe. This was what her grandpa had kept by his bedside every night for the past ten years but had vanished when she’d gone with her mom to pack his things last week after the funeral.

She noticed a small inscription on one side of the handle that she’d never seen before as grandpa had never liked her holding a sharp tool. Jude had only seen the knife from her perch on the side of his bed as she read him pages from The Call of the Wild by Jack London while he came in and out of periods of wakefulness.

The letters “AK” were there. But her grandpa’s initials were “ES.” As her fingers curled around the cold handle, she felt eyes boring a hole through her back. Turning around, the woman was there again. This time the blue eyes looked moist. Only Jude’s mouth was the opposite, too parched to form a word yet so many questions to ask.

2017 Christy Birmingham

Poetic Parfait

This short story is inspired by a photo taken by Chris from the Milford Street blog. If you don’t know his photographs, I encourage you to go them check out in his posts! It was his recent Old Timers post that caught my eye, featuring the image below. Thanks again Chris for letting me use your photo for inspiration and permission to include it here.

Pocket knives at a flee market Folding knives. So many stories to tell. Like this short story. Photo via Christopher O’Keefe, Old Timer, used with his permission.

Folding Knives and Blue Eyes

The knives were folded on the table in front of Jude and, like them, she was without words. Where was the one that her grandpa had owned? None of these were calling out to help her.

She felt a dig into her left side.

“Oof,” she said, and her hands instinctively covered the sore spot. Looking over, she met…

View original post 667 more words

Advertisements

Categories: Featured

6 replies »

Reply At Your Own Risk. Leave The Dumbfuckery At The Door.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s