Not even as affection

Bun? Elle thought, who calls someone ‘bun’ as an endearment? She had thought it quite sweet, especially so early on in their courtship. ‘Courtship’, she laughed at the word. Then he looked at her and she stopped laughing.

“Hun,” he repeated and for a moment she was disappointed, ‘hun’ now too ordinary, almost something a cashier at Asda would say, although Elle usually got ‘pet’ or ‘me duck’.

She wondered why he was holding his hand out but then realised he was glaring at the jar in front of her.

“Sorry,” she said and handed it to him, just a grunt in thanks.

So it wasn’t ‘hun’ either, but honey, and that not even as affection.

She watched him eat… heavy, like a rugby player, although she thought they’d be more gentlemanly.

The sex was good… with him, not the rugby player, although given the chance…

Now he was holding out his mug, perfectly capable, she knew, of pouring a second cup of tea, but his feet were clearly under her table in more ways than one.

“No!” she said, the richness of her voice taking them both by surprise. “I’m not your wife… not your mother and certainly not your slave.” She put down her tea, stood up, and pointed towards the door.

He grunted again, put on his jacket and got back on his milk float.


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Unfortunately, as I post an interview a day (amongst other things) I can’t review books but I have a feature called ‘Short Story Saturdays’ where I review stories of up to 2,500 words. Alternatively if you have a short story or self-contained novel extract / short chapter (ideally up to 1000 words) that you’d like critiqued and don’t mind me reading it / talking about and critiquing it (I send you the transcription afterwards so you can use the comments or ignore them) 🙂 on my ‘Bailey’s Writing Tips’ podcast, then do email me. They are fortnightly episodes, usually released on Sundays, interweaving the recordings between the red pen sessions with the hints & tips episodes. I am now also looking for flash fiction (<1000 words) for Flash Fiction Fridays and poetry for Post-weekend Poetry.