I took a short writing course recently to improve my skills having never had any training and it appears also not learned any proper grammar at school! This short story was from one of the exercises given in the lesson by our fantastic tutor Claire Sharland. She gave us all a box of goodies on it and 20 minutes or so, mine had some parma violet sweets in and a tiny box with some writing on. (amongst other oddities!). I really miss my Monday afternoons feeling daft having written about royalist goldfish trying to find their party hats and pussycats searching for lost mieaows so hope to join the follow up course in the summer as well as finish a longer piece which has been fluttering away for a long time. Anyway thought I would share my somewhat cheesy moral tale with you, I am still not quite sure what the moral actually is but I do like the idea of macaroons being burgers from Oz!
Violet stared down at her feet as they alternately came into view, one after the other sliding beneath her. She smiled to herself as she looked at the rows of houses coming round the corner, curtsying in her path.
As the small alley came into view she slowed as her shoes finally met in a perfectly tidy alignment. She pulled her oversized purse out of a wooden handled bag shoving it under her arm. She poked around at the bottom of the purse trying to see which coins were swimming around amongst the scraps of paper. A couple of golden nuggets came up to the surface and she clicked the purse shut as her stomach let out a grumble. Sweet almondy smells filtered out of the alleyway amongst warm steamy swirls.
The bell let out rippling tinkles as she opened the door, a round lady bumbled out from between beaded curtains catching glittering plastic jewels in her thick unruly hair.
The cake stands were filled with oozing pastries, bubblegum pink plasticised cupcakes in paper pleated skirts, sugar coated donuts sliced open and spilling out cream, macaroons like burgers from Oz and in the corner was a tiny cake stand no bigger than a Portobello mushroom. On top of it sat a box. She couldn’t make out the writing on the top of the box.
“Hello…What’s in the box please?”
The curly lady with the flushed cheeks and plastic jewels dangling from her circular shoulders picked up the box.
“Ah this box has inside it one small lilac cake so filling it is all you will need to be perfectly satisfied and all at the cost of just £1. There is something else I should tell you though which you may or may not see as a bonus. If you don’t eat the cake and you bring the box and cake back tomorrow I will give you another one for free”
Violet stood up a little straighter at the thought of such an offer and handed over one of her little golden nuggets immediately.
She clacked open the wooden handles of her bag and carefully placed the box into the inside pocket deciding to investigate as soon as she got home. She had always been rather proud of her self-control. She could feel the warmth exuding out of the bag as she left the tinkling bells behind.
She carefully pressed the key into the lock of the front door pushing it open and scooping up the letters on the mat as she walked in. She looked at the names on them hopefully but in a slow blink she placed them into the holder that was screwed to the wall gently hanging the keys on the hook before adjusting the letters squarely. She unbuckled her shoes carefully placing them in the rack resting on the floor and pushing the stuffed sausage dog back against the front door. She went to the kitchen flicked on the kettle and sat at the table as the bubbling volume grew.
Reaching in to her bag she pulled out the box and placed it on the table. The writing on the top was worn but she could make out a g.r but the last letters were missing. “hmmm, great? Green? Grand?”
She opened the box and inside was the most mouth wateringly exquisite little cake. Soft yellow sponge bubbling and squeezable sheltering under lilac shiny icing with fine white powder dusting.
The kettle clicked. Violet reached over and opened the store cupboards to reveal perfectly stacked boxes and jars of flavoured teas all hand labelled next to just one large cup. Sliding any misaligned jars into place she clicked the cupboard shut and placed the cup beside the kettle.
She pondered on what the bumbling curly lady had said and put the lid back on the box. She was hungry now but if she waited she could have another. She wondered how many cakes she could have, was there a limit? She wondered what it could have said on the box.