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This Vicious Sky

An entry for the Vocal Improbable Paradise Challenge

By Mike Singleton - MikeydredPublished 12 days ago Updated 3 days ago 3 min read

This is an entry for the Vocal Improbable Paradise Challenge which you can read about below.

The Fight

They were on a tropical booze cruise somewhere in the Indian Ocean. They had won their tickets in a London Football Club draw, A: was a white racist West Ham supporter and B: was a Somalian Leyton Orient supporting thug who hated whites and West Ham supporters. There could not be two more undeserving benefactors of goodwill but life goes like that quite often.

Fuelled by cheap lager and pills an argument started, which descended into a fist fight and grappling with each other against the boat’s railing, all of a sudden it snapped and they were in the ocean and still fighting. No one noticed them as it was late at night, and because they were still fighting they didn’t shout for help, until their cruise was almost over the horizon. Now they were too far away and it would probably be at least midday tomorrow before they were missed, even if they were missed.

The Island

They eventually stopped fighting and started drift swimming, keeping afloat as the sun came up, then they saw the island and swam for it, landing on the sandy beach. It was more of a sandbank than an island, there was no plant life apart from washed up seaweed, although the island had a lot of small monolithic standing stones.

A: “What the fvck, it’s fvcking freezing. We’re in the tropics, how can it be freezing?”

There were no clouds overhead, the sun was shining but there was no heat. It was like a winter’s day in Clerkenwell.

B: “How should I know, I’ve only ever been in London til this cruise, and if you hadn’t started a fight we’s be in our bunks on the booze boat, you racist cvnt”

A: “It wasn’t my fault the railing snapped, I’m gonna sue the fvckers, that boat isn’t seaworthy, I,m freezing, I know what I’ll call someone”

B: “My god you are thick, do you think there will be a phone signal out here? We’re on a sandbank in the middle of nowhere”

Then it hit. In the fight they had lost their phones and wallets, probably at the bottom of the Indian Ocean by now, assuming they were still in the Indian Ocean.

“We need to find shelter or we’re going to freeze to death. We have no wood or matches so can’t build a fire, we just have to hope someone comes past here and they see us. See if we can find some shelter in these rocks”

They wandered into the rocks and were touched by an eerie familiarity. A: looked at his hands and arms:

A: “Sh1t , I’m getting frostbite…. On a tropical island …. This can’t be happening”

B: “Same here, I think my hands are going to drop off, we need to find some heat”

A: “Look I know we hate each other but needs must, if we hold each other combining our body heat might keep us warm enough to get through”

They reluctantly embraced but the body warmth was minimal. They were slowly freezing to death on a tropical island. They were two men who hated each other but were now holding each other closely to try and survive this vicious cold under this tropical sky. The sun provided light but no heat.

As they held each other and froze they started to see what the other monoliths on this island sandbank were. They were other frozen people, sometimes alone or in threes, who had been frozen on this hellish island and they realised they were going to be the latest addition to this horrific vertical cemetry.

Silence once again reigned over this improbable paradise.


Music is "Turn to Stone" by Joe Walsh, I think you know why now

Short Story

About the Creator

Mike Singleton - Mikeydred

Weaver of Tales, Poems, Music & Love

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Reader insights


Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

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  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

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    Well-structured & engaging content

  3. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

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    Arguments were carefully researched and presented

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Comments (6)

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  • Keila Aartila3 days ago

    Oh - this is creepy! I especially loved your opening paragraph! 💕

  • Lamar Wiggins10 days ago

    Wow! Mysterious, makes me wonder about the history of the Island. Nice Job! it was engaging. Left a heart.

  • Daniel Jeyaraman11 days ago

    Nice one, Mike. 🥰

  • Awesome story, you did it again!

  • I absolutely loved the fact that you chose horror for this challenge! This story reminded me of one of my favourite authors, R L Stine. You're sooooo brilliant! I loved this story so much!

  • Misty Rae11 days ago

    Booze cruise! That's what we called our annual drunk on a boat event back in my law firm days! Nice story, we do what we have to do to survive. Well done.

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