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Drama

Our drama category is for fans of stories filled with feeling, focusing on strong dialogue and well-rounded character development. Tragedy is a common theme, with gritty, realistic emotions driving the story. Readers are given clear insight into characters' thoughts and taken on a deep and sometimes courageous journey. Please send in your dramatic fiction or take a look at one of the emotive entries below.

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The Long Road Home Chapter 14

“How can snow still be so beautiful amidst all this devastation?”

Innsbruck, December 17 th 1943   Both Maria and Katarina were glad that the policeman hadn't argued. They had spent some ninety minutes on the back of this filthy, freezing lorry as it picked its way carefully along the rubble-strewn streets, almost but not quite stopping as it drove over bricks and pieces of debris. The foreman had done a marvellous job of keeping the...Read On

2

The Worry Stone

A chance meeting at a county fair helps to heal a young man's broken life

My life fell apart when I was ten -- and that night will stick with me forever. It was mid-summer and Mom and Dad wanted a weekend to themselves. I was spending it with my grandparents -- Dad's parents. We'd had a good time with a quiet day -- just Grandma, Grandpa, and me. That evening, one of their friends, Gene, came by to visit. We were sitting in the kitchen, drinking tea and nibbling...Read On

2

The Long Road Home. Chapter 13.

They could see the tiny clouds of smoke bursting in air. The guns at Brenner were no longer silent!

Innsbruck, December 15 th 1943   The night wore on. Huddled together for warmth in the now freezing carriage, Katarina and Maria dozed fitfully. The hours seemed to pass by so slowly but, eventually, the cold, grey dawn began to push away the darkness. As the light grew in intensity, a few white snowflakes began to fall past the window. Maria wiped her hand across the...Read On

14

Scattering Apart

Jin looked out over the city from the rooftop of one of the tallest buildings in Seoul, it was a breath-taking sight. And he hated it. He hated the crowds. He hated the busyness. He hated the noise. He hated the tall buildings. ‘Skyscraper’, such a simple, yet symbolic word – to scrape the sky. Is that our way of letting God know that we’re here and we’re trying our best to touch Him? Or...Read On

4

The Long Road Home. Chapter 12

“Il Treno,” she said, using up most of her knowledge of Italian. “Where is it?”

Brenner. December 15 th 1943   For the first time in many months, Katarina and Maria found that they had a little time to relax. The Army began to dismantle the compound, beginning with the damaged huts at the far end. The first two huts remained in use. One for accommodation and storage, the other for minor injuries and ailments. As the time to depart approached, the two...Read On

0

Desire of the Samurai Chapter 3

 

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The Long Road Home. Chapter 11.

“Are we in trouble, Maria?” Katarina asked quietly...

Rome. November 28 th 1943   As the sun began to set, Katarina and Maria continued with the task of ensuring that the patients were ready for the big move the following day. According to their orders, ambulances would be provided at first light ready to begin the transfer to the railhead where two hospital trains would be waiting to take them on the long journey back to Germany....Read On

0

The Poetry Lesson

You are far too thin to survive these kinds of things.

"The Poetry Lesson" (inspired by Osip Mandelstam’s “The Stalin Epigram”)   The cell is pitch black except for two cones of stark light, One over a man wearing a sea-green single-breasted tunic, Breeches, polished jackboots, and a peaked cap, Sitting behind a metal desk, And the other over a naked man whose arms and legs are Chained to a four-legged chair with one...Read On

3

The Long Road Home. Chapter 10.

“This not joke, Larry. This is life or death, your life or death! If Mahler think you Jew...”

Rome. November 21 st , 1943   “Maria, I'm troubled.” The two sisters were sitting by the window in their room, watching the rivulets of rainwater cascading down the other side of the glass. Every now and then, a gust of wind would divert the flow, creating new tracks. Without taking her eyes from the fascinating scene, Maria asked why. “It has been a week now. Larry is...Read On

1

The Secret Life Of Mrs Faulkner - Chapter Three

Lonely: With his good hand, Tom raised his glass and drank deeply. Blergh! He thought, making a face. Raspberry Vodka. It was all they had. All he could find in the house, all the other drinks and alcohol being wasted on the mourners at Cheryl's wake.  He'd found the raspberry vodka in Sue's room, stashed under her bed. He didn't know what had possessed him to check there, but a thought...Read On

4

Escape to the West

“Hey!” a man’s voice shouting. “What are you doing there?”

Erika Hoffmann was afraid as she walked through the dark, rain-soaked streets of Eisenach, a small town just inside the border of East Germany. She should not have been out at this hour, ninety minutes after the curfew of ten o’clock which had been imposed in January. The Soviet rulers had been worried about people attempting to escape to the west and if she was caught by the Stasi who...Read On

4

The Long Road Home Chapter 9

“I have seen the letters after the address but I have not seen 'H'. Do you know what it denotes?"

Rome. November 03 rd , 1943   The revelation that Staff Sergeant Lawrence T. Bowman was Jewish was a shock to Katarina. To her, it mattered not a bit but, for some reason, she had never really thought about the religion of anyone outside of her own world. Americans, English, all those whom Germany was fighting were just people but, suddenly, this young man was in mortal danger....Read On

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Recommended Read

Fifty Years On

Gaze fixed on her phone, Jaz read the email again without taking in a word. She squeezed Tish’s hand, her grip tightening when raucous laughter exploded from the four men sprawled on the seats diagonally opposite. “I mean, look at ’im. Fuckin’ poof.” Tensing, Jaz looked up to see the man in the outside seat facing her, lean across the table and send a beer can clattering to the floor....Read On

3

The Long Road Home. Chapter 8.

“Don't be afraid, Ilsa. They won't bomb us this time.”

Rome. September 19 th 1943   The repairs to the compound and the security arrangements were completed in a few days and the soldiers left with only a handful of men remaining to guard the entrance. The orderlies were replaced with German medics which left just Maria, Katarina and Ilsa as the only Red Cross nurses. Along with the medics, more equipment arrived and one of the...Read On

2

Terrainer – Diaries

A woman looks for her place at the end of the world.

  Dear Bryce, I've come to realize, three things that should never be withheld from being said are, "Please," "Thank you," and, "I'm sorry." Please, don't take this letter the wrong way.  This isn't an attempt to reestablish contact with you or rekindle our friendship.  Although, I would like to talk to you again, see how you've been, and possibly even become friends again, I don't...Read On

2

The Long Road Home. Chapter 7.

“Look at you,” she said. “I am not used to seeing you so grubby."

Rome. September 4 th 1943   Maria stared in horror at the scene of devastation ahead but wasted no time in getting the ambulance to a safe place. Quickly, she jumped from the cab and ran around to the rear to check on her charges. To her distress, Anneliese was still not conscious. “Keep an eye on her,” she told the two airmen brusquely. “Make sure she keeps breathing and...Read On

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The Long Road Home. Chapter 6.

“They have big stars under the wings with stripes either side. What else could they be?”

Rome. July 19 th 1943   The visit to the Vatican seemed to have a profound effect on Hanna. As soon as she passed through the great doors and entered the Basilica, she became calm and appeared to be at peace. Maria took the lead, Katarina not having been inside a church for many years. Taking her arm, she led Hanna to a row of pews immediately opposite the confessional boxes....Read On

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The Long Road Home. Chapter 5.

“You taught me a lesson I will not forget, Matron. I am not a soldier, I am a doctor..."

Rome. May 19 th 1943   Maria had been right. The camp, a compound comprising of ten, makeshift wooden huts arranged in two rows, was situated adjacent to Ciampino aerodrome for the very purpose of repatriating the more seriously wounded. It transpired that their presence there was no accident. They had been sent there because of their experience in Libya and their training in...Read On

1

The Trip

A trip of a lifetime with a friend...

“Who wants to go with me to Israel next year?” Margaret threw the question in the middle of the group of friends who were enjoying themselves around the fire. No one said much and on a whim, I decided that it would be the perfect opportunity to spend time with my best friend who has fought cancer the past eighteen months. “I will,” Margaret looked surprised, but then a big smile formed...Read On

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The Long Road Home. Chapter 4

They both laughed gently. It was good to hear someone had survived the escape from Tripoli unhurt.

Rome. January 19 h 1943 It was well after midnight when, with a short, sharp blast of the locomotive's whistle, the train signalled it was ready to leave. The carriage in which the two young sisters were sitting gave a sudden jolt and then, with another, began to move. Almost imperceptibly at first, it rolled slowly along the quayside before turning away from the water and...Read On

2

An Idea for a Short Story

Her long hair spread over my chest and smelled like … like … what was it? Who was she?

Sounds. Voices. Tingling. “I saw a twitch …” “… His eyelids are fluttering …” “How are we doing today Mr. Stavros? You gave us quite a scare, didn’t he Mrs. Stavros?” The young woman addressing him was dressed in a pale blue pajama holding a clipboard with pen poised to note something indicative. Off to the left side of his visual space was an older woman who seemed to stare intently...Read On

3

Into the Darkness, Into the Light

What do you do when it all becomes too much

Dana looked down at the blood on her wrist; the thick red line followed a path slowly down the inside of her arm. She lifted her arm, the thick red line mesmerised her, every slow advancement of it taking her back in time. She was happy once she thought, or was she ever happy; her mind struggled to find a happy moment, a moment she did not hate her life or what she was. The red line...Read On

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Recommended Read

Dear Friend...

Ben decides to follow through a seemingly spam email asking for money. Is it real?

The sun’s heat was particularly humid in the open plan office, as though the windows were large magnifying glasses, the workers under inspection, the heat rebounding from their computer monitors to bombard them as though they were in an oven. Benjamin Lowell looked up as a shadow fell over him. Trevor Ingram was standing there, holding out a bacon and egg sandwich and a Styrofoam cup of...Read On

5

Coming Out

Coming out to your parents

Marie was fiddling with her wedding band, a nervous expression on her face when Elena saw them from the entrance of the coffee shop. Her mother gave her a little wave to catch her attention. Wouter turned around a big smile on his face, always happy to see his daughter. He stood up as Elena got closer and gave her a big bear hug, “That’s my girl, the big boss manager,” he grinned and slapped...Read On

2

Venus de Milo

How does one ever know whether his memories are his or implanted by someone else?

“What can I do for you?” “Well, Professor Palmer, I’ve been browsing the Internet and came across your work on false memories and external indicators differentiating false and true memories,” Axel answered the man sitting behind the oversized mahogany desk. “That was based on research and clinical experience with childhood traumas such as those of rape or incest victims,” the...Read On

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Recommended Read

A Walk in the Desert

What could be more banal than going for a walk?

"A Walk in the Desert" (c) Mike Stone October 8, 2014   Tuvi Ornat put the old concert ticket he'd been using as a bookmark between the two pages he had been reading and laid the dog-eared paperback gently on the table beside his chair. He stood up and stretched his arms. "I'm going for a walk," Tuvi called upstairs but there was no response. He scribbled a short note and slid a...Read On

5

The Long Road Home. Chapter 3

The six, wing-mounted machine-guns barked for a brief moment...

Taranto. January 17 th , 1943   Maria stood on the quayside and watched the ship slowly disappearing into the distance, unaware of the approaching danger. Suddenly, her superior officer, Oberstabsarzt Bernhardt Ritter, grabbed her arm. “Come on,” he said as he pulled her urgently towards the small Kübelwagen standing silently behind them. “What?” she said, puzzled but then,...Read On

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The Long Road Home Chapter 2.

Something large and heavy landed on her, knocking her to the deck...

The Mediterranean. January 17 th , 1943 As the setting sun began to dip below the horizon, SS Aegean Sea reduced her engine revolutions to slow. The frothing, white water that had hitherto washed along her flanks disappeared as her speed reduced to almost a standstill. Captain Konstantinos Theodopolis opened his bible and read.   “ The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I...Read On

7

The Long Road Home. Chapter 1.

The continuing story of two young sisters trying to survive the horrors of World war Two.

The Mediterranean. January 15 th , 1943 Matron Katarina Langsdorf leaned on the rail at the stern of the old tramp steamer, the coast of Libya having long been lost to her sight by distance and nightfall. Her eyes were moist and red from the tears she had finally allowed to flow, once her fury at being dragged aboard without her sister had subsided. Almost as soon as the ship...Read On

12

Time and Tide

“Hattie!” she shouted out with excitement. “You didn't!”

“Ronnie, I got them!” Harriet Mitchell bounded up the steps to her friend's front door waving a nondescript white envelope above her head. “They came this morning!” Veronica Pickles, 'Ronnie' to her friends stood in the open doorway of her Belgravia town house, a puzzled frown on her pretty, young face. “What came this morning, Hattie?” Harriet's face was flushed with excitement as...Read On