Welcome to Calliope's Coffee House the proprietor of this establishment is Jacquie Reaville better known as The Book Imp.

When I started this place it was primarily for book reviews and thoughts on all things literary. Well the book reviews are still here, but somehow it's grown into a place for me and others to practice short fictional writing and of course a place where I can give my thoughts and opinions on virtually any subject that might take my fancy.

Hope you enjoy your visit.

Just to add that I welcome comments, the more the merrier. They don't even have to be related to books or writing just go wild (not too wild though).

Permissions are set so that even anonymous users can answer - but comment moderation is in effect which means I get to say yes or no to letting them appear here.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

A Day At The Races (Calliope Experiment #4)

A Day At The Races
Jacquie Reaville

They all stood at the top of the hill, Dave, Micky, Zach and Ben. Looking down Burnel Street to the duck pond at the bottom. It was a long way.

“Are you up for it?” Dave said “Not going to chicken out?”

“Nah” said Micky

“It was a dare” said Ben

Zach sniffed and wiped his nose on his sleeve. “Just remember to swerve when you reach the bottom”.

They all laughed thinking of the brackish water and the frightened ducks if anyone went careering into the pond. Not to mention the trouble from their parents.

They looked at each other, these four intrepid racers, then pulling on their cycle helmets each one climbed into his pride and joy, the machines made from their own imaginations and with the sweat of their brows.

At the top of Burnel Street four home made racing cars waited, painted in vivid colours that no vehicle should ever be. But when you only have left over paint found in garages and sheds, then the colours were just fine.

Orange, purple, sky blue and sunshine yellow assaulted the eyes. Wheels of all sizes and thicknesses. Flags and stickers bedecked the plywood chassis and initial letters in deepest black on the bonnets. They had worked hard on this project for four whole weeks, and today was the day.

“Can you see him?” Ben asked squinting down the hill.

“Not yet” answered Micky, “He’s probably forgotten what he’s supposed to be doing”

All four boys laughed.

“Hold on” said Zach, “Is that him?”

Sam, checked up the road and down, making certain there was no one about. Then he moved into the middle of the street. He looked up the hill and saw his four friends waiting. His stomach fluttered. He wished he’d been able to build a racer too, but he’d only just got back from Spain with his family yesterday. He took a deep breath and lifted both his arms in the air.

The four boys leaned forward, watching, their eyes glued to the slightest movement of Sam’s arms, and then he brought them down with a snap and they were off.

Shouting and whooping the four racers trundled down the hill, slowly at first then faster and faster until they were speeding hell for leather down the tarmac.

“Get out of the way!” came a shout as an axle came loose and Zach’s racer collapsed to the ground, the back end dragging, the wheels bouncing freely to the side of the road.

“Loos-er!” shouted Micky as he and Dave sped past laughing at Zach’s expression.

Ben wasn’t so lucky. He crashed right into the side of the sorry cart. He was jolted so hard his helmet shot off and hit Zach on the head. Both boys started laughing, unable to climb out of the wreckage until they had stopped.

Micky and Dave were neck a neck, and Sam stood in front of the pond, shifting from one foot to the other. “Come on” he said “Come on”. Not sure who he wanted to win but caught up in the excitement.

As the two racers sped towards him, Sam blinked, he saw Micky lift his arm and point to the right, pulling on his steering string. Dave did not. Sam closed his eyes unable to move as the sunshine yellow racer passed him, hit the stone edging of the pond and then took to the air.

They all stood at the bottom of Burnel Street looking up the hill. One of them dripping wet, the other four with an assortment of wheels and wood in their hands.

“Same time next Saturday?” asked Dave

“You’re on” the others said.

© J L Reaville - 2008


  1. Cool experiment - I enjoyed your writing. I'm not ready to try my hand at this, but I'll check back to read the updates!

  2. Always welcome, especially as you enjoyed what you read :)

    The experiment is here if and when you feel comfortable in taking part and comments are always welcome.

    I doubt I'll stop hosting it in the foreseeable future, I like to write too much.

  3. Nice story...brings back memories of a different generation but of similar times...

  4. The idea of the race came from something my Father told me had happened when he was a young lad, and from the time I built a racer with his help LOL.


I welcome comments so please feel free to leave a message, the site allows Anonymous users but comment moderation is in effect. Which means I get to vet what you've written before it appears on the page (Oh the power!).

About Me

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Birmingham, West Midlands, United Kingdom
My name is Jac, Jacquie, Jacquelynn, TheBookImp or just Imp. I live in the UK. I love to read as is probably obvious. I also like to write. Anything else you would like to know just ask.

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The Historian by Elizabeth Kostova

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