Jeremy Peter Plumptre – Fear

Quantum mechanics. Subatomic particles: the infinitesimally small building blocks of the Universe. They are in everything. We are made up of them.

Quantum mechanics tells us particles go around in pairs. One particle spins up, the other spins down. One spins clockwise, the other spins anti-clockwise. They appear in two different places at the same time. They can communicate with each other faster than the speed of light. They can pass through walls with no problem. Particles can jump across the Universe, and still faithfully copy each other millions of miles apart, like a pair of tango dancers twirling and twisting round. Perhaps they inhabit different Universes:one going forward in a different, but only slightly different, bubble of time. No-one knows. This is the account of two Universes clashing together.


It was time for the dog’s walk. Pedro liked going up to the clifftop, while Dino sniffed and peed, he liked looking at the stars circling endlessly above him. He sat down alone, at the top of the world.

Pedro :16 years old with a scar on his left cheek where he had fallen from the swing when he was four. Pedro with shifty friends, Mat and Juan, who were playing around with cocaine smuggled from Colombia, or Mexico: Pedro didn’t care and didn’t want to know. But he liked the guys, they brought him beer and he gave them a place to hang out in his Dad’s garden shed, which wasn’t used. Dad had gone long ago.

Dino suddenly growled and began barking. Pedro turned round and saw a shadowy figure standing behind him. The figure was transparent and Pedro could see tree branches waving through it. Pedro gasped with fright: Dino kept barking. Pedro realised he was looking at himself ,except his scar was on the right cheek. It was a mirror image of himself.

The other Pedro turned and looked at him with hot golden empty eyes. It pointed to the sky and Pedro saw a huge canopy, like a screen. Pedro watched in fear, as the screen came to life showing five shadowy figures. Two of them standing apart and one was pointing what looked a weapon, a gun, at the other three.

Pedro felt it was some kind of warning: he was feeling a sort of strange vibration with his second self. In the ghostly scene the one with the weapon must have fired, as the other three first ran and fell back and hit the ground….

He’d seen enough. Shaken and dazed he stumbled down the cliff top, looking over his shoulder as the canopy and the figures disappeared, leaving a clear starlit night again.

Once more Pedro was at home. He decided that he must have fallen asleep and had a nightmare up on the clifftop.

“What’s the matter, dear?” asked his mother. “Fell over” mumbled Pedro.

“Looks like you saw a ghost, pale face !” Chuckled his dad.

Pedro’s mobile rang. It was Mat.” You gotta come down to the boatshed, Ped . There are these great Colombian guys giving a sort of party. Beer and blow, all you want! ” Meet us here at 8.

Pedro thought that a party was just what he needed. He muttered something to his parents and headed out of the house to his bike. The chain had come off. He felt strange :something was pushing him to go but another force seemed to be pulling him back :to wait. Cursing the bike, he levered the chain onto the cogs and went inside to wash his hands. Then he set off. He was going to be ten minutes late ! His bike took him to the boatshed in 6 minutes. Coming down to the shed he freewheeled silently up to the wooden wall and peered through a loose knot in the plank.

-I´ll surprise them- He thought.

Noiselessly he crept up to the rotting wooden panels of the shack. He peered through a hole where a knot of wood had fallen out.

The surprise was all his. He felt a jolt of fear.

Far from a happy gathering with beer and fun he was witnessing a scene of terror.Mat and Juan were standing at one end of the shed and two dark swarthy men were standing at the other. One had a sawn off shotgun which he was pointing at the two boys. Pedro somehow recognised the scene from the hallucination on the cliff.

Mat had a wet stain on the front of his trousers.

“Come on boys, tell us where you got this.” One of the men said, pointing to a small pile of white powder on the table in front of them.

“Er found it, down by the rocks,” Juan muttered.

“Come on now, you know that’s not true. Did you take it from a stash in the shed?”


“DON´T FUCKING LIE!” shouted the other man, grabbing the shotgun he fired. The shot spread out and spattered out to one side of Juan, ripping his jacket open. Blood appeared on his arm.

“Yeah ok, we , we we took it from the shed,” Juan was whimpering.

“Well, you see boys, that gives us a problem. We can’t let you go now, telling all your fr….”

“POLICIA,DETENGANSE. ABRE ESTA PUERTA!!!!” For added effect Pedro pounded on the door, as he shouted.

The yell echoed through the shed. Instantly the Colombian fired in Pedro’s direction. The shot embedded  in the wood,  one small bit stinging Pedro’s cheek. The men backed through the rear, tearing a gap to escape in the rotting wood, and fled, firing the other cartridge as they ran.

Pedro, Mat and Juan were just as quick opening the door they ran down to the sea and clambered over the rocks as the tide was coming in. Scrambling through the surf they arrived safe and soaked at the beach. They paused for breath. It was dark and no-one could see them.

Pedro looked across in the direction of the boatshed. Over the roof he saw himself, his waif-like arms waving in victory. Then the figure seemed to be drawn up into the sky and disappeared.

Published by Ian

Music maker and story teller.

5 thoughts on “Jeremy Peter Plumptre – Fear

  1. I enjoyed this vivid story Jeremy. It had me thinking, was it a premonition, another dimension, a gut instinct…all of which could be a possibility. Your intro about quantum mechanics had my mind in overdrive. Once again, this seems like the basis of a much longer story. Well done for capturing my imagination.


  2. True, Ian! I like the physics intro a lot. Some of your phrasing really helps readers connect with your unique author’s voice, e.g. The surprise was all his.

    For dialogue layout in fiction the convention is that each new speaker gets a new paragraph:

    “What’s the matter, dear?” asked his mother.
    “Fell over,” mumbled Pedro.

    Your verbs are evocative and you have a playful coupling here with readers forecasting the cliché ‘safe and sound’ – oh – safe and soaked. Fun!

    Scrambling through the surf they arrived safe and soaked at the beach.


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