Flash Fiction · How to be British


Thursday, March 29, 2018. Daily Brit Wit.


Exclamation, British informal 

An expression of surprise.

“I wake up shivering. So I squeeze my eyes shut, hike up the duvet, and block out all thoughts in order to fall back asleep. This is when a noise penetrates the fog. At first, I pay it no heed because it isn’t unusual for dreams to keep going as I situate myself back to slumberland. With another half-violent shiver, I curl my legs up into my chest and throw the blankets over my head.


I groan, wishing fervently the bloody voice would leave me the hell alone. Even dead, my ex-girfriend won’t stop haunting me. It’s madness!

But then there’s a draught that I cannot explain away and I can’t help it– I look and see the window thrown wide open. I squint at it, hoping the inanimate object picks up on my sleepy ire but it’s no use. But then I see movement out of the corner of my eye. It takes a mo to process, but lo and behold, there she is: my dead ex-girlfriend twirling in a pirouette or something absurd in the middle of my bedroom floor.

On her next twirl around she identifies I am now awake and a broad, translucent smile spreads across her ashen features. ‘Oh, excellent; you’re awake!’

‘Crikey, woman! Do you ever plan to leave me alone?!’ I cry out in alarm.

The dead ballerina shakes her head, shaking loose some pieces of what was once pitch black hair out of its forever pinned back bun. ‘Nope.’

‘What are you doing, Zariah?’

‘Why, badgering you for all eternity, haven’t you figured that out yet?’

My head drops back on its pillow with a thunk. ‘We broke up.’

‘By default.’ the dead ballerina points out diplomatically. ‘Technically the dead cannot defend themselves so….’

‘So, what– you’re implying I”m stuck with you forever?’

‘Or until I pass over, whichever comes first.’ her voice is cheery.

‘Can’t you at least bother me during regular human hours?’ I glare at her.

She makes an insincere noise. ‘No, sorry. You see I don’t have a watch.’

‘Piss off, Zariah; go pick on somebody else until it’s at least time for me to get up.’

‘Can I follow you to work today?’ she inquires with a great deal of mischief.

‘If it means I can go back to sleep, yes!’

Her laugh is more a cackle as she does a leap, jumps on the bed and knocking the air out of my lungs with a whump like impact, and then I feel (pardon my pun) a ghost of a kiss to my forehead. ‘You’re the greatest boyfriend that ever lived, George!’

‘Yeah, yeah!’ I shoo her away. ‘Let me sleep!?’

Of course, she forgets to close the window on her way out.”


© The Loyal Brit Wit, 2018

3 thoughts on “Crikey

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