Tag Archives: Very Short Story

Postcard from Hell

Stephanie at BeKindRewrite has once again provided her weekly prompts for Inspiration Monday IX.

Dear Jimmy,

Well, it’s pretty much what I expected. There are many rooms and levels here. I’m in the TV section, where we are shuttled back and forth between soccer and CNN. We are given plenty of fluids but there are no bathrooms. Nobody talks about why they’re here because we’re not allowed to speak, but each of us knows our sins. We are not allowed books, pencils, or paper. I have to hand it to him, it’s all pretty ingeniously planned for ultimate discomfort. I guess this is permanent, but since no questions are allowed I assume it is. If we fall asleep we are shaken and shown pictures of honor killings and have to praise Allah. Complete attention to the televisions are strictly enforced—at the end of each day we are tested, and if we answer a question wrong the volume is cranked to maximum. This creates dissent among the inmates, which the guards enjoy. If I am caught daydreaming I am singled out to clean the game show room while cranky retired people follow me around describing in detail their recent surgeries while I am forced to politely feign interest. I believe these people are apparitions but they are real enough to me.

Well hon, gotta go. They’re repeating the same tragedies on CNN for the umpteenth time today, but claim there are updates, so I’ve got to pay attention. I don’t want to tell you what I had to do to the guard to smuggle this message out, it’ll just piss you off and I know you have your own problems.