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Cut-throat Competition

14th May, Story #136/366

By L.C. SchäferPublished 8 days ago 3 min read

Nestled deep in the countryside lay two neighbouring villages.

Lower Mossbrook was neat and clean. It had wonderful amenities, lots of cycle paths, a picturesque well on the green, and a very competitive Neighborhood Watch Subcommittee for the Village of The Year

Bramblewood backed onto a forest which was considered an area of outstanding natural beauty and was home to two endangered species. It boasted thatched roofs, a crooked little pub which was the oldest in the county, and an equally competitive Village Council.

As the Village of the Year judging drew closer, both villages increased their efforts to be cleaner, prettier, and more welcoming. But it didn't stop there.

Albert Tennyson-Brown, the Chairman of the Bramblewood Village Council, looked like a walrus in tweed. An angry walrus, at this moment. He stood beached on the little wooden bridge, scowling at the freshly splintered railings, his mustache bristling at the plastic bottles choking the river. They had certainly not been there yesterday. He walked this way regularly with Toby, his Labrador, and it was usually a delightful stroll.

Time to call an extraordinary meeting.

His cohorts in the Council matched his indignation with "This is sabotage!", "Outrageous!" "cheats!" and "tut tut"

His wife, Sylvia, knew just what to do. She spoke to her grandson Eddie, and showed him the duffel bag of spray paint cans in the garage. Eddie nodded, took the bag and went to fetch his friends.

At the Mossbrook village hall, Edna Speckleworth adjusted her hat and spread out the plans her own grandchildren had helped her draw. It was a shame the room was always immaculate and there was nothing on the table to be swept dramatically aside.

The closer the day drew, the fiercer and more toxic the contest became, with efforts escalating and getting dirtier on both sides.

Stones thrown, windows broken, the well on the green smashed, and graffiti appearing faster than it could be scrubbed away.

I am sure you know where it's going. When the judges arrived, both villages were in such a state that neither won the award. They had become so intent on undermining the competition instead of focusing on what they could improve on their own doorsteps.


Word count: (excluding author's note): 366

Submitted on: 14th May at 22:15

*Quick Author's Note*

First, and most importantly:
thank you so much for reading my story! The ha'penny that Vocal will pay me for your eyeballs landing on this humble piece will be well spent. I might extend the West Wing and upgrade the servant's quarters.

If you enjoyed this one, the best compliment you can give me is to
share it, or read another!

A Year of Stories: I'm writing a story every day this year. This one continues my 135 day streak since 1st January!

Please do consider lending your support to the other creators who are also on this madcap "a story every day" adventure. They are putting out excellent content every day!

Rachel Deeming

Gerard DiLeo

Leave a comment: Please do leave me a comment. It makes it easier to reciprocate the read.

The story behind the story: This was originally going to be literally cut throat, with sweet little old dears getting murderously competitive! I've written too many murder stories lately and couldn't bring myself to write another. Maybe that idea can go back in the tank for another day!

Thank you

Thank you again, most especially if you are one of the wonderful people who has been staunchly reading these daily scribbles since the start of the year. I see you, and appreciate you 😁


Short StoryMicrofiction

About the Creator

L.C. Schäfer

Book-baby is available on Kindle Unlimited

Flexing the writing muscle

Never so naked as I am on a page. Subscribe for nudes.

Here be micros

Twitter, Insta Facey

Sometimes writes under S.E.Holz

"I've read books. Well. Chewed books."

Reader insights

Nice work

Very well written. Keep up the good work!

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Comments (15)

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  • Cathy holmes5 days ago

    Ah, the stupidity of competition leaves them all lovers. Well done.

  • D.K. Shepard6 days ago

    Great story, L.C.! The scene was set so wonderfully. Loved the character description. Especially, "looked like a walrus in tweed. An angry walrus" And the devolution was so well narrated!

  • It feels like I've heard this story somewhere before... Maybe it's one of those archetypal fairytales that surface time and again, in many shapes and forms?

  • Play stupid games, win stupid prizes. In this case, no prizes at all 🤣🤣🤣🤣

  • Murali8 days ago

    This is a good moral story.

  • Kenny Penn8 days ago

    Valuable lesson in this story. Think of how much we could achieve if we worked together instead of tearing each other down. On a side note, I read, “lots of cycle paths”, as “lots of psychopaths” 😂. Good stuff L.C.

  • JBaz8 days ago

    And the moral is…. Wonderful I like this in a sad way

  • Caroline Craven8 days ago

    Ha this was great and I definitely love the idea of the old dears becoming murderous too!

  • A very valuable lesson!

  • Mark Gagnon8 days ago

    A wonderful observation of human nature. You weren't inspired by today's politics were you?

  • What a fun story! Love the moral of it!

  • “Albert…looked like a walrus in tweed” 😂😂😂 and just like that, I know exactly what Albert looks like! A brilliant piece of descriptive prose there, LC! I was expecting a hot fuzz moment of old people murder cults but this is so much better!! I know some people who are competitive enough to try this level of back stabbing sabotage!

  • Excellent moral, I do publish every day, but they are not all stories

  • Gerard DiLeo8 days ago

    When you fight a dirty fighter you have to get dirtier.

  • Belle8 days ago

    Such a nice read! This little tale is small but enduring, and seems to relate to so many scenarios. It makes me think of even apocalyptic literature, where the world is faced by zombies but most of the time it's people who kill people out of doubt of each other. The world easily becomes cut throat when there is something everyone wants, whether that's survival or just an award. Amazing as always, L.C.! And look! You submitted before 11pm! Good on you!! 🥰

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