PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

PHOTO PROMPT © Dale Rogerson

THE TUNNEL   (100 words)

By Neel Anil Panicker

Life’s a crawl when I bump into Charlie, childhood buddy, fresh out of jail.

 “Mat!” he screams, his whisky scarred voice a slur.

Man’s a toughie; mean as they come in Cox Bazaar.

“Wanna make some cool money?”

Months back he had come to my shack with his sister, who was friends with Karen, who is pregnant with our baby.

‘How much?’  I ask, mindful not to sound too excited.

“Twenty grands, ten upfront, rest after the job”.

I bite my lip and walk past.

 “I’ll come with the dough. Tonight”.

I don’t reply. He knows what my answer is.


This wonderful challenge is hosted by the wonderfully sweet and talented Rochelle at


Erie Canal

18 thoughts on “neelwrites/fiction/shortstory/fridayfictioneers/19/01/2017

  1. Oh, I like this a lot. Although…not familiar with “life’s a crawl, “whiskey scarred voice” was great. I don’t know what Mat’s answer was, but I’d like to. I was also concerned that Karen’s baby might not be Mat’s! Lots to think about in your little story. Great job.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. With ‘life’s a crawl’ i wanted to convey that for the protagonist life was slow paced and not heading anywhere. Even i would like to know what Mat’s answer would be. Maybe i will explore that more and see where it leads me to.
      Thanks you for your appreciation Kecia.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Oh, of course. It’s good, “life’s a crawl.” I must have been very dense when I read through the first time. I love it.


  2. glad he didn’t accept the offer. charlie was no longer the same person he used to know.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. For sure Charlie had changed, but then so had he. Or had he really? I deliberately left the end a bit open ended. Leaves room for much speculation. Thanks for your appreciation, Plaridel

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Dear Neel,

    I’m harboring this hope that Mat will bundle Karen and their meager belongings (shack beautifully conveyed that in one word) and find a place far from Charlie. Somehow I don’t have the impression that that will happen. But I hold out hope. 😉 Good one.



    Liked by 1 person

    1. Dear Rochelle,
      I too hope the same. But then if i sit down further and start probing Mat I really don;t know what turn the story would take.
      Thank you Rochelle for your appreciation.


  4. Something bad’s coming up, certain of it. Convincing dialogue.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes, looks very ominous, isn’t it? Thank you Sandra for your appreciation.


  5. I love that first line. It pulls the reader in beautifully.


  6. Great feeling of atmosphere and characters, Neel.

    Good narrative and let’s hope they left in the middle of the night.


  7. A sad situation when you know there’s no choice really… Hope he finds a lottery ticket instead.


  8. Some very vivid imagery here.


  9. Lynn Love

    Ooh, now that’s intriguing – up to us to decide which way the character will jump. Very strong dialogue and the characters were very clear for so few words. Well done!


  10. michael1148humphris

    That first line says so much, brilliant


  11. Great take. Hope he doesn’t screw things up.


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