Sunday 29 August 2010

FREE by Ian Ayris

TKnC welcomes Ian...


To wake up without fear, that's one hell of a thing. I mean, no fear at all. Nothing.

And that after one fucker of a year.

Started last April when me dog got run over by some prick in a white van. Loved that dog, I did. Trixie. Border collie. Had her since I was twelve.

Tracked the bastard down, though. The geezer in the white van.

I know where he lives.

And then there was Lucy, our little girl. Gorgeous, she was. My little angel. Five years old. Leukaemia.

Doctor said she'd be okay. Pull through, you know. Watery blue eyes, she had. Like she knew.

Doctor Gareth Williams. 46 Tennyson Close. That was him.

Wife left me two days after the funeral. Said she couldn't cope. Moved in with her mum. Her bitch of a mum. Never liked me, she never. And the old man, what a cunt he is. Thinks he knows everything, he does. But he knows fuck all. About me. About my life. About what it's like livin without the only things what was ever able to get right inside you and make you feel something.

Thompson and Sons. Doormakers. Was there since I left school. They reckoned I should see a psychiatrist, get counselling, or something. After everything, you know. I said I'd be all right, just take a bit of time.

That's when the burnin started, sittin in that office, listenin to all that shit. Got worse at night, the burnin. Got so when I closed me eyes I had to grit me teeth so hard I thought they were gonna break. All that just to hold it in. That burnin. I'd wake up with me eyes all wet and tears all over me pillow.

But that stopped. After a while. The tears, I mean.

They got rid of me anyway. There since I was a nipper, and they got rid of me. Just like that.

The bank threw me out the house. The bank on the high street, next to the post office. Couldn't pay the mortgage, see. Ended up in this little bedsit where I am now. It's a shithole. But it does.

And the burnin, that burnin what I was talkin about, one night, it just went cold. Stopped. And I woke up in the mornin light as a fuckin feather. I've started smilin again. But it ain't like a happy smilin or nothing, it's more like I'm smilin cos I know what I gotta do. I got a purpose. Something to live for.

It's been two days since. It's took me that long to get all me bits together.

The paraffin. The ropes. The knives. Me list of names and addresses.

My name is Terry Jenkins. I am twenty-four years old. And for the first time in my life, I am free.

Ian has had a dozen short stories published online and in print, in such publications as Byker Books 'Radgepacket' series, The Flash Fiction Offensive and Pulp Metal Magazine. He lives in London with his wife and three children, and has just completed his first novel.


  1. Very impressive, Ian!

    Beautifully written and, if I may say so, one of the finest pieces I've read here recently. Quite succint and to the point - a study in one man's decline into revenge.

    I hope we'll see more? Perhaps a sequel....?

    (I want to know what happens next, dammit!!!!)

  2. Ian, Sue H said it better than I could. It ended way to fast and I wanted to keep reading. The voice, wording, and short sentences were awesome, especially as I'm from the U.S and I really dig the language you used. Is your novel available? I would love to have a look. Best of luck!

  3. I agree with all the other comments - a fine piece of writing with a great voice running through it.

    Congrats Ian.

  4. "Freedom's just another word for nothin'left to lose" Ain't that just the plain truth. Continue on or leave it as is. Either way, it's beautiful and complete. would be nice to see the listees get what's coming but, really, I just figure he'll do it up right. Another winner from that Ayris bloke. Good on yer, cobber.

  5. Perfectly done. Not a Wasted word. Moving, as always, and chilling.

  6. Absolute cracker - loved it. Nice work!

  7. You show us the cause before the snap, and the sick part is I feel like I want to cheer him on. Ian, you write effortlessly and more importantly cause us to connect with your characters. Great story!

  8. Nice job, Ian. Not overdone. Loved the part about setting himself free. I second the sequel idea.

  9. Excellent stuff! Not saying that just 'cause I'm your twin brother either. You have certainly found a voice that resonates - anyway, back to my longdescriptivewindingroad sentances...

    Keep up the great work!

  10. Chilling, how easy it was to identify with the character and share his desire to burn it all. well done!

  11. Now that's a bloody corker and a half, that is. Great writing Ian.

  12. I'm with Paul, this is perfectly done.