Naflafiwrimo Day 1: Diplomacy

I was surprised the other day to discover that Camp Nano is running in April this year, they keep changing the months. A friend also introduced me to NaPoWriMo, also running this month, in which you write a poem every day. I’ve decided to try a similar thing; I’m going to write a flash fiction story every day this month. And you will get to see them all.

*Gasp* all of them?

Yes, all of them.

Even the really bad ones?

Er, yeah. Sorry about that.

This endeavour will be called NaFlaFiWriMo (obviously). I even have a mascot.


I wrote today’s story for a graphic design student’s project. She’s making a book of images of objects found in antique shops and each will be accompanied by a story. I got this image to work with:

silver salt and pepper

I thought they looked quite regimental in how they’re lined up, so I wrote this.








Two men sit opposite each other across the width of a table long enough to seat twenty more. They sit in silence and avoid each other’s gaze.

The table is set out with its owner’s most exquisite silverware. Plates are piled up with food prepared by the country’s greatest chefs; not the famous ones, but the best. Every national delicacy is on display. There is enough food to feast half a dozen people and most of it is untouched.

The larger of the two men tucks into the banquet as if settling a score. The other man eats little of the courses cooked at his command.

Both men wear different military uniforms made heavy by different medals.

Their conversation is over. The room is too large for echo with the tiny chink and scrape of cutlery.

The larger man looks up from his plate and searches the table around him. After a moment he spots what he is after. He regards the other man, who is brooding in silence.

He goes back to his meal but something still isn’t right. A few moments pass and he looks up again.

A polite cough. ‘Could you pass the salt?’ the larger man asks.

The other man looks up, startled, but doesn’t reply. He frowns and remains motionless for a full minute, staring at the salt shaker.

‘No. I tire of this game,’ he says at last. ‘If you will not sign, I will not keep up this pretence of good will. You will leave tomorrow morning.’ He stands up and walks the long distance from the room. His booted steps reverberate with finality.

The larger man is left alone. He stays there for some time. The salt is just out of his reach.


About lemonmachine

I am Kieren McCallum, a third-year English Literature student at UEA, Norwich. View all posts by lemonmachine

4 responses to “Naflafiwrimo Day 1: Diplomacy

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