New Britannia – Room 101

These things tend to be short pieces that may or may not be the beginning of something else. Originally they were 101 words only. I’m less strict about that now. They dont always finish, I just like to try and evoke a certain feeling or scene.


A thick fog rolled in across the Thames as Big Ben chimed nine times.

“That’s locking up time I reckon” Darla said to her husband getting up from behind the counter and heading over to the shop door.  It had been another quiet night, it always was when the pea-souper rolled in.  “People just don’t being out in it do they.” She added.

“Uh-huh” Bran responded not looking up from his newspaper.  He was very much looking forward to heading upstairs and putting his feet up.

Darla flipped over the sign on the door and reached for the top bolt, but before she could slide it closed the door burst open with such force that she was thrown backwards into the shelving at the end of the aisle and she collapsed to the floor with a scream.

“What the…” her husband exclaimed dropping his newspaper and standing from his chair as two men, dishevelled and dressed mostly in rags, burst through the door and headed straight for him.  “Now just you wait a minute” he shouted without any fear seeing his wife’s legs protruding into the aisle.

“Just shut it and empty the till into the bag” the larger of the two shouted pulling a long metal blade from his belt and waving it wildly.  The smaller squarer man reached across the counter and pushed a bag into his chest.

Darla rubbed her head and attempted to stand knocking cans to the floor, and both men turned to see her slip back down to the floor.

“Hurry up” the tall one shouted.  “In the bag. Now”

With the contents of the till emptied into the bag the short man reached over and grabbed  it and as he pulled back threw a wild square into the jaw of Bran dropping him to the floor.  For a while he lay there, his head spinning and attempted to regain his feet.  By the time he did the door of the shop stood open and Darla was steadying herself leaning against the aisle shelving.

“Are you okay” she asked walking slowly towards him as he leaned against the counter breathing heavily.  He nodded.

“You?”

She smiled and rubbed her head.

“Takes more than that to upset me” she answered  “Do you think we should call the police?”.

Bran reached out and placed a hand on her arm. “No, let them have it dear, there’s no wonder these humans are an endangered species the way they behave…”