Spirited off to the River

Spirited off to the River

A Story by KimmieR1728

A short story task I submitted for my first assessment in Creative Writing at university


Having eaten Japanese cuisine for so many years, I now can’t go without it. So, despite the awful fog coming from the mountains I brave it to the tiny supermarket on the island. I need a spicy, steaming ramen to make things seem normal. At the checkout, I notice two older women, gossiping. “Wind upon the hills, my dear,” one says in a thick Scottish accent, unlike any I’ve ever heard except for one.


On the drive back, I daydream of my beloved grandfather. His passing brought me back to this other world. He used to say to me as we hid from my parents: “Listen to the wind upon the hills,” part of an old Gaelic proverb. Every summer, we’d explore the trickling streams dotted around the open highlands, biding our time until my worrisome parents scolded us both.  


Consumed by my thoughts, I cook absentmindedly until I spill boiling broth down my legs. I curse but instinctively take to scrubbing the floor tiles with a wild smelling disinfectant. The stench makes my eyes water, tipping tears over the brim. Each one holds resentful questions and painful regrets. Things I will never be able to answer, for as long as the tears are absorbed by my skin.  


I need some air, so I go to cut some coriander from the vegetable patch in our cottage’s garden. There’s a moth, a slender scotch burnet, resting on the thyme. Granddad was also good at naming all the wildlife Scotland had to offer. As a child, I loved making up my own names. Burnets were ‘backwards ladybirds’ to me, red spots against black wings. I inhale deeply, gulping the nostalgic air. The last light is fading behind the hills, and I am mesmerised for a moment.

© 2018 KimmieR1728

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I enjoyed this write because you set and moved a series of memories and created a reality within a reality. Each paragraph is well crafted, the second one being my favorite. I hope you have more writes like this. Well done.

Posted 4 Years Ago

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1 Review
Added on November 18, 2018
Last Updated on November 18, 2018
Tags: short story, challenge, scotland, skye, japanese, gaelic, grandparents, moths, sadness, regret, memories



Birmingham, West Midlands, United Kingdom

Currently studying English Literature in Birmingham, UK. 19 years old. more..

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A Story by KimmieR1728