When the fear struck, Claire abruptly stopped, frozen to the spot, midway across the bridge.
Oh no, not again, she thought, as she gasped and panted and closed her eyes involuntarily against the huge waves of panic that washed and broke over her, making her head spin, her body tremble and her skin break out in a simultaneously hot and cold sweat. Her heart was pounding like an industrial hammer, her hands were tingling with pins-and-needles and her throat was tightly constricted, making it difficult for her to breathe.
With a supreme effort of will, she suppressed her fear and clung to her rationality, keeping a grip on her wits, forcing her eyes back open and carefully stepping back a few paces, away from the centre point of the bridge.
And all the time she struggled to hold back an insistent urge to throw herself off the bridge and its whirling skyline and let herself plummet to the needle-sharp rocks below. Read more…
R J Dent says: ‘I’m particularly proud of The Bridge because although it qualifies as one of the most unpleasant short stories I’ve ever written, and although I hated writing certain scenes, the story addresses several serious issues – namely that monsters appear in all guises – some human, some psychological, some emotional. It’s the one story of mine that gets more criticism levelled at it than any of my others.’
Copyright © R J Dent (2010)