Short Stories & Flash Fiction
Comments 37

The Locals


PHOTO PROMPT -Copyright Rochelle Wisoff-Fields

You learn certain things about people when you live in a small village.

Like Mr Bartlett who always order three pints of lager before a pint of bitter, or Mrs Caraway who will always bake a malt loaf for the August fair despite claiming for the past six months that she was going to try something new.

Everyone is odd. You just notice it more in small villages.

Thomas Green however, was very odd. One Christmas he collected odd socks from the neighbours, and hung them around his porch.

I asked my mother why.

“Because,” she said. “He just does.”

[100 Words]


I was really stuck for what to write this week, and since my car’s suspension decided to give up on me over the weekend, leaving me stuck in Shropshire with my parents, I thought why not draw upon local inspiration. [In the sense of odd neighbours, no one I know actually hangs odd socks as decorations.]

This entry was posted in: Short Stories & Flash Fiction


Carol J Forrester is a writer and a history geek. Her debut collection 'It's All In The Blood' came out November 2019. She has a 2:1 BA degree in history from Bath Spa University, enjoys judo at least twice a week, and tries to attend poetry events around the Midlands when she can. Her flash fiction story ‘Glorious Silence’ was named as River Ram Press’ short story of the month for August 2014 and her short story ‘A Visit From The Fortune Teller’ has been showcased on the literary site Ink Pantry. Her poems ‘Sunsets’ and ‘Clear Out‘ were featured on Eyes Plus Words, and two of her poems were included in the DVerse Poets Pub Publication ‘Chiaroscuro’ which is available for purchase on amazon.Her poem ‘Until The Light Gets In‘ was accepted and published at The Drabble and her poem ‘Newborn’ was published by Ink Sweat & Tears. She has been lucky enough to write guest posts for sites such as Inky Tavern and Song of The Forlorn and has hosted a number of guest bloggers on her site Writing and Works.


  1. Helena Hann-Basquiat says

    You know, this is like a snapshot of an entire oeuvre of stories, like you’ve created an entire world with 100 words. You could set stories here forever!

    • Thank you. I suppose that’s exactly what it’s like living in a small village. It only looks like a few words, but actually stories spider web outwards.

  2. An interesting take on village life. Even the language has something of a parochial feel to it. Well done. (Did you mean 3 pints of lager?)

    • Perhaps. It is a rather extensive family. I heard they’re might even be some Viking blood if you trace it back far enough.

  3. bykimberlylynne says

    Sounds like home 😉 Loved this atmospheric piece.

  4. I don’t know what a pint of bitter is or a loaf of malt. Other than not understanding that part, I found myself among those oddballs! 😀

  5. You’ve created a great setting here in just 100 words. Instant character in both the people and the town. Nicely done.

    • Thank you. I was a little worried the piece would be too vague since I was trying to pack in quite a few characters, but it seems to have gone down well.

  6. i think i have an explanation about the socks. bless his heart, he still believes in santa claus.

    • Perhaps you’re right! Or maybe he just feels sorry for odd socks and wants them to feel as beautiful and complete as matching pairs.

    • Oh drat, I’ll go back and correct it immediately. I could make the excuse that I never drink the stuff but I’ve also worked behind the bar so that one doesn’t really fly.

  7. Fascinating village! You gave us such a sense of the place in just 100 words, wow! The socks are interesting, I wonder why he just does?!?

  8. Ah, village life. And people in small villages are also more likely to notice others’ oddities. I wonder what my neighbours have noticed about me since I moved in?!

  9. Your story portrays small town life really well. The characters might be quirky and laughable, but you’ve created them with affection, and not mockery. That’s why living in a small place is comfortable – the familiarity and predictability of its people. Lovely.

    • Thank you. I’m really glad that it comes across as affection rather than mockery. Rural life can be very amusing, but we all share in the madness. To mock one would be to mock all and one’s self.

  10. Dear Carol,

    The locals are believable. I love the image of Thomas Green’s sock collection and his mother’s acceptance.



  11. We all have our little idiosyncrasies. You might not believe this, Carol, but there are some people who think I’m odd. 🙂

Please take the time to tell me what you think, I love receiving feedback. :)

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