Three Line Tales : Just one step

photo by Samuel Wong via Unsplash


Every weekday he steps onto the escalator, blinks in the cold neon, shuffles to the right. It’s a conveyor, he thinks, sucking up human beings, churning out labourers, consumers, productive cogs.

Then one day he’s about to take that first step and his foot pauses as if caught on an unseen obstacle. There’s a tut and grumble from the commuter logjam building behind him, but now he’s unable to move. He once dreamed of flying in a rocket ship to the craggy face of the Moon, of chipping the old bones of a newly discovered dinosaur from the chalk. He once dreamed.

An impatient cough stirs him. Flushing, he takes a step and though inside he’s raging, wanting to turn and run, to fly a rocket, to name his dinosaur, he shuffles to the right, let’s the escalator carry him on and up.

This is not an age for dreamers.


Written for Sonya at Only 100 Words’ Three Line Tales. See the pic and write a tale and pop along here to read and share.

7 thoughts on “Three Line Tales : Just one step

  1. wow- you grabbed what felt like stuck in adult life- and so right there with him as he pondered and just felt the energy of his feelings with the energy of the escalator and people

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, the dystopia… (wait…it’s happening now.) I think we should still dream of being writers. Oh, HEY! We are doing it. (Mostly you, at the moment.) Thanks for always being the place I can go for a quick minute away. It’s been too long; I literally sighed out loud with relief when I saw your header picture of the books. Hugs!


    1. Haha! In London, I think it would be perfectly possible to be clubbed to death by irate business men just because you’re daft enough to stand on the left of the escalator! I considered giving him a happy ending, sending him to a park to enjoy birdsong, but it felt too easy, predictable. Surely better to make him realise the treadmill he’s on … and for him to choose to remain on it. It’s how most of us live every day. Thank you so much for reading and the kind comment Jane

      Liked by 1 person

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