The lovely Nicola Morgan (ignore everything I wrote about her before) has said that I was next on the list to win a prize in her Hotel Chocolat Halloween Competition, and although I don’t know which of the two stories I submittted nearly won, I’m going to put one of them here. The other one suffered, in my opinion, from being cut down to a hundred words. I’m going to restore it to its original state and use it for something else.

Bye for now!

Time for a Backup

I stare at the screen, horrified. Instead of my document, large letters areCOOL CHAT E drifting, mingling. Suddenly they stop. COOL CHAT E, I read. Sobbing from the loudspeaker. Drops of liquid trickling down the screen. Tears? More drifting, stopping at ETCH COLA O. More crying. This must be my computer’s final fling before…. I close my eyes and picture years of unbacked-up work disappearing down the snakelike cables. Opening them, I see, EACH LOCO T. Weeping, howling. Drifting again. CHOCOLATE. From the loudspeaker, whining. I hurriedly stuff a piece of chocolate into the USB. “Mmmmmmmmmrgrmgrmmrmgrmmrmgrrrahhhhhhh.” My document returns.