Each week, we pick a short fiction piece from our Fairlight Shorts archives to feature as our story of the week. This week, we’ve chosen a story about running by Becky Jones.
Becky Jones is a seasoned content marketer, who lives in Reading, in the UK, with her husband and two boys. As a professional marketer for over fifteen years, she writes a lot for work – blogs, eBooks, email campaigns and more. Around her work and busy family life, she loves to blog and write short stories. For a long time she has wanted to write more creatively, but has found it difficult to carve out the time to get started.
A couple of years ago she set up a personal website to start blogging, which was an important step forward. When the pandemic put the world on hold, she inadvertently found more time to sidestep from writing her blog to writing short stories, and she has been enjoying creating a small collection over the last year. She loves the brief escapism which short stories provide in our often hectic lives.
‘Hammered’ follows a man and woman as they turn to running to escape work concerns.
Hammer toes were something she’d been born with. Her grandmother had truly awful feet – toes overlapping, varicose veins, bunions and all sorts. Summertimes, when she set them free in sandals, were grim. ‘Don’t look down’ was the collective agreement at family get togethers.
Chloe’s weren’t as bad as her grandmother’s – yet. Nevertheless, her weakness for sky-high designer heels was like pouring petrol onto an open fire for her feet. Statement shoes were an indulgence she rewarded herself with too regularly to compensate for her gruelling job in finance operations – a few times, embarrassingly, as costly as her rent.
A numbers wizard, she spent most work days buried in spreadsheets and formulas. Not long after the shock of the first coronavirus lockdown had eased, her boss had looped her into the company’s plans for rationalisation.