Saturday, 2 September 2017

DailyFlash: Bloody Knuckles

His right hand is shaking - his small child hand - still balled tightly into a fist at the end of a hairless arm and thin wrist. The knuckles are red and raw with bits of white skin torn away. For an instant he sees his father's face as he reacts to the news, gearing into a rage. Not now, man, he thinks, pushing it aside with deep breaths, quelling an urge to pant.
     The other boy, the one on his haunches, is looking up at him, one eye beginning to puff up. He glances at the girl who started it all and then shuffles backwards, inadvertently putting his left hand in the sticky, bloody residue left on the tarmac by the second punch he'd dodged. Had I dodged it, though? Didn't he just punch the ground?
     To the girl, it's as though the sun has just broken through the clouds. Which it had, funnily enough; it settles over the scene casting shadows. From behind, she eyes her saviour's fist as it shakes, and reaches out to grab it. As she takes it, it stops shaking, and the boy stands taller somehow, stretching his shadow until it reaches and covers the hopscotch pattern chalked into the pavement.

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