He shifted his weight on the hard park bench as the recess bell rang off in the distance. Already exhausted, he sighed as the children rushed out for their daily dose of controlled chaos. A quick glance at his watch told him his break was almost up, and a long shift was still ahead. The temptation to take a short nap almost overcame him…almost.
How much better would it have been to be home with his hounds enjoying a nice, peaceful day? Some people thought them intimidating, but really, they were just misunderstood creatures, and he loved them so very dearly. He groaned, shifting his weight again. The bench really was uncomfortable on his bony bottom.
The children sprinted around chasing each other in tag, climbing on the jungle gym, and playing soldiers, all under the equally weary eyes of the other teachers. The shortage was getting to them; it didn’t take a doctor to see that, which, of course, he was. Truth be told, he was feeling the stress as much as they were. This wasn’t what any of them signed up for, and so many simple fixes were hanging out there! But it was made very clear to him that it wasn’t his job to fix the problems, just to go where he was called. C’est la vie. That gave him a chuckle.
Overworked, underappreciated, and constantly under the gun, He was amazed he wasn’t getting even more calls for the ones coming apart at the seams, and the current call load kept him working late every night. After spending most of his practicing years traveling around in hospitals, he felt like he barely set foot in those these days, except for during COVID-19 – he talked to a lot of patients and doctors alike during that disaster.
A gaggle of kindergarteners, it was tough to tell when they were that young, ran by shrieking and chasing a soccer ball. They paid him no mind, nor should they have. He rubbed his temple; that was the worst age to deal with. The screams and shrieks always left him with a headache. A quick check of his ancient watch said it would be a late night, and he’d have killed for an aspirin. Ahh, I crack myself up. The dogs would be fine; he could make a quick stop after work, assuming no other emergency calls came up. Today’s shift wouldn’t go too late either; the school wasn’t that big after all.
His watch vibrated, and he checked the little hourglass, the grains draining out of it. Welp, that time, eh? So much for my break. All in a day's work. His old, rattling bones creaked as he stood up.
The tires screeched off in the distance. The bangs followed shortly after.
His break now over, Dr. Death picked up his scythe.
I found no joy in writing this. Above is my entry to both Mother Combs and L.C. Schäfer's challenges, below:
You can read all my works here:
About the Creator
Full-time nerd, history enthusiast, and proprietor of random knowledge. The best way to find your perfect story is to make it yourself.
Here there be dragons, and knights, and castles, and quests for entities not wished to be found.
Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!
Compelling and original writing
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Original narrative & well developed characters
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Writing reflected the title & theme