Struck Dumb

Logo for the Fandango Story Starter Prompt

For Fandango’s Story Starter #20, where we build something around the following phrase:

We had planned to meet under the bridge at midnight, but…

I was late. We had arranged to meet in the park, by the grotto, but I was late. I hoped she hadn’t given up on me. Damn! I glanced at the luminous facia of my wristwatch. This was only our second date, we’d really hit it off first time around, and I had high hopes for her. I crossed my fingers that she would wait.

Even as I approached the grotto, short of breath, a burly, middle-aged police officer was erecting a barrier, to keep spectators at bay. But I could still see the rubble on the ground a way behind him.

“What’s going on?”, I panted. “What are you doing here?”

The man stopped and addressed me.

“And you are?”. He inquired.

“… on my way to meet my girlfriend, under the Ponte della Grotta”, I interrupted. The bridge was a hundred yards ahead, by the looks of things the same sort of distance as that rubble. I ostentatiously looked at my wrist once more and added “And I’m in a hurry”, before attempting to push past the man.

He held me with one hand. “Not so fast, sonny. My instructions are not to let anybody through this perimeter. Wait here, Sergeant del Potro will want a word with you”, and with the other hand, he raised the transmitter fastened to his lapel to his mouth, speaking quickly into the mic.

 We had planned to meet under the bridge at midnight, but only then did I learn that my new girlfriend had been crushed to death, after it collapsed onto her.


Sorry, had a serious day, felt like a lighthearted evening.

Author: Mister Bump UK

Designed/developed large IT systems, interrupted by a stroke in 2016, aged 48. Now mix development of health-related software with voluntary work and writing. Married, with an estranged daughter.

15 thoughts on “Struck Dumb”

  1. My aunt once told me told a sad story Any years ago of a neighbour’s very quiet son, who suddenly became even more withdrawn. After a few days he revealed to his mother that he had just met a really nice girl at last who he thought was the one, only to hear she had been killed in an air crash. I didn’t even know the chap, it I have never forgotten that.

    Liked by 2 people

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