1 January 2009

Morva House Fiction: "Stupid Romantic Gesture"

Title: Stupid Romantic Gesture
Word Count: 313 words


“Mum! Look!”

Mum came to the door and looked out.

“Mary? What?” Mum came, looking worried. “Oh no,” she said, when she looked out through the glass panes of the door. “What's that on our front verandah?”

“It's a heart.”

“Heart? Looks like frost. But it can't be. It looks like icing sugar. It really lookds like icing sugar.” Licking a finger Mum opened the door and stooped to touch the white stuff powdering the deck. “Icing sugar?” She sniffed the stuff on her finger, then, very quickly, as if hoping not to taste it at all, touched it to her tongue. “Icing sugar. Why would anyone put icing sugar on our front verandha?”

“Isn't it romantic?”

Mum looked at her daugher, a blossoming girl, a young woman that boys might want to make romantic gestures for. She might as well learn now that empty gestures were not all they were cracked up to be.

“It's not romantic,” she said. “It's a bloody mess. You can vacuum it up.”

“Why me?”

“Well, do you know who did it?”


Of course, Mary knew who she hoped it was, but she had also learned by now that while she had her eye on someone, it was some geek she had never noticed who was watching her. Mum saw that she wasn't going to get an answer.

“And what's that mark there?” she asked.

“It's a heart, Mum. That's why it's so romantic.”

“It looks like a bum.”

“It's Valintines Day, Mum. It's a heart.”

“No. It's a bum. Your brother must have drawn it.”

“He'd have eaten the icing sugar, Mum.”

“Then I guess he didn't do, and you can vacuum it up. Now, Mary. Before it goes all icky and hard to clean. And before the ants come. We don't want someone to come and see a sticky bum drawn on our deck.”

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"Stupid Romantic Gesture" copyright by Morva Shepley 2009

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