Tale from the Blade

“Jesus!” exclaimed Lorna as she stopped still at the Market Cross. Commercial Street was virtually deserted, though filled with fog & greasy smell of deep-fried chips. What was unfolding before her defied the laws of peacefulness at such hour. Not enough beer was yet lashing down Lerwegians’ throats at 6 p.m. … Before her eyes two silhouettes were engaging into brawl. She held her breath.

“Oh Magnus, for da love o God!” she yelled at one whom she suddenly recognised.

Magnus did not answer. In his anger he pulled a knife – that very same knife, shiny-sharp blade he was using at his workplace just alongside the Esplanade. This time Magnus wouldn’t fillet a lemon sole or gut herring. He was desperate.

“Dunna… Dunna touch him wi da knife” begged Lorna.

Lorna was barely 17 with a temper so mercurial. “Headstrong” could be her middle name. She was selling the fish Magnus prepared in the backroom at Mr Fraser’s shop. Lorna moved without thinking. She leapt towards Magnus like a lion onto an armoured gladiator. Tears were too late. The street’s flagstones turned spotted red as soon as steel finished its job. Lorna’s brown eyes stared at Magnus; her hands clutching at his shoulders that held all his teenage madness in a moment of delusion. Lorna collapsed into his arms; Magnus stood still like a statue.

“Whit is du done?” suddenly screamed his opponent.

“Dunna touch her, shö is my lass!” Magnus unleashed in sheer terror.

© Nat Hall.

Tale from the Blade


Joined March 2008

  • Artist

Artist's Description

flash fiction set in Lerwick, Shetland.

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