Thursday, 30 July 2015


A/N: I wrote this after reading 'Submarine' by Joe Dunthorne and was trying to emulate his style. This was published in the June 2010 edition of online fiction journal, LITSNACK. You can read it THERE, if you prefer. 

Easy adj. Capable of being accomplished or acquired with ease; posing no difficulty.

Cara was the easiest girl in school. Or so everyone said. What little I knew of her did little to convince me otherwise. She wore her skirt two inches above regulation, and Mark Hallet said he'd given her a seeing to behind the bike sheds whilst they'd both been skiving double maths.

You see, where I come from you're guilty until proven innocent when it comes to proper comportment. You either shag any girl who'll have you, or you're a raving bender. My Uncle Arthur says the latter ought to be strung up by their unmentionables. That's the way he speaks, my Uncle Arthur.

Arthur is not my real uncle; he's my mum's new husband. She is a monophobe. So afraid of being alone that she lets Arthur press bruises onto her milky white forearms and keep the bank cards to their joint account in his own overstuffed wallet. Some other phobias you might like to know about include:

- Phalacrophobia. Fear of becoming bald.
- Ranidaphobia. Fear of frogs.
- Primeisodophobia. Fear of losing one's virginity.

"I don't 'ave all day," is what Cara says when we get back to her house. A tea party of dolls stare up at me with sinister intent, she tells me she shares a room with her sister. I fumble with the buttons of her blouse and she watches me disinterestedly as I transform from a boy into a man.

It doesn't feel any different and, when I tell Cara I'm leaving, she doesn't bother to show me out. Uncle Arthur claps me on the back when he finds out, and Mark Hallet makes up dirty jokes all through combined physics. Cara never says a word to me again, and my mum leaves a belated box of little foil wrappers on my bedside table.

Putting out is easy I will later tell my own son, it's the bringing up that's the hard part.

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