Mother isn’t happy, but we are unaware. Oblivious. Lost in our thoughts about how long we will have to sit in this stuffy room on the 15th floor. Thinking about the weekend and a good few glasses of something special.

I look around at my colleagues. I think that’s what you call the poor souls that spend their days together. Not out of choice but in debt to institutions in bigger buildings than this. Paying back the debt on theirs.

Then a droning noise, like someone is drilling the centre of he building. Then it stops, briefly as the table we are sat around starts to move around like a Ouija board, as if we have upset someone from the other side.

I hear screams from another room amid shocked pale faces in mine. Some dive under the table; some head for the door. I sit frozen, wondering what magnitude it is. The building has base isolators so it shouldn’t collapse. So they say. Who’s hanging around to find out ?

We sit in our cars, gridlocked. Pedestrians overtake us, crunching on broken glass; some crying; some unsure. Somewhere there are people I care about that I can’t reach. Not by phone or car or good intentions.

Note to self. Focus on real life and love. Quite a jolt.


© Ash Cheyne 2017

Daily Prompt Challenge – Jolt





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