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The Maze

Photo copy right: Victor and Sarah Potter.
Photo copy right: Victor and Sarah Potter.

How come everywhere was abandoned, surely someone must have stayed behind. He would be amazed if everyone had disappeared. Yet it seemed universal, every building he visited seemed like this one, instantly abandoned. Lights left on, why even on some occasions, he had found watering cans filled ready to water plants.

He knew that when he left home in his attempt to climb three Munros without stopping, there had been concern about North Korea’s intentions, but surely they could not have the ultimate weapon. The newspapers said that only the USA had managed to build one. Confused: Jim decidedly was.


Monroes is a term used to denote mountains over three thousand feet high in Scotland.

Bagging Munros is now a popular past time. But be aware attempting to bag to many at one go, can be a reason for delirium. Even if that state is only one of wild excitement, should you succeed in your attempt.

Within this prompt I saw the spiders web, it looked like a maze to me. So I decided to use the word ‘maze’ and see what came forth. The term ‘maze’ in old English is thought to have been used to describe delirium.



This Post Has 60 Comments
  1. Dear Michael,

    Three Monroes? Not I. Not even one. I liked that you saw a maze, rather than a web. That’s what I mean when I say it’s what you see and not what you’re looking at. Nicely done.



    1. Thank you yarnspinnerr, I have been learning from all who take part in Friday Fictioneers. I also remember a teacher refusing to mark a piece of my writing. I had used an obsolete and obscure Victorian society name [The Plumage League]. She failed to understand ‘Plumage League’ so she totally failed to understand my ghost story.

  2. Michael, I really enjoyed your story this week. A maze indeed (by any definition)… One can only imagine the scenarios that bring about the abandonments… what a way to return from a journey.

    1. Thank you Varad. I always hoped to see the Himalayas. My youngest son is hoping to visit base camp next year. It is great to know that you must have seen stunning scenery.

  3. Great tale Michael. I can imagine what it must have felt like coming back from a successful ambitious climb to find nothing. I can feel the panic rising just thinking about it. Thanks for the extra info. Bagging will not become a past time of mine.

    1. Sometimes I ‘think about’ bagging a ‘hill’ but not a mountain. But I would need a hip flask plus pencil and paper. It would have to be a clear fine day for the helicopter to set me down.

    1. Ben Nevis, 4409 feet, but it is far from a quiet mountain… I used to walk up a flat topped hill of less than one thousand feet, which I visited most weeks, to dream and take in the panoramic view. I only once ever came across another person there.

  4. Atmospheric and chilling, but maybe he should pause and think- Why would North Korea nuke a friendly, beautiful place like Scotland? That would bring him back to earth I’m sure. By the way, my story on the prompt was inspired by Scotland too 🙂

    1. It is quite possible to climb three Munros in one go. It would certainly be a great feeling to do so. I was sat having coffee with a fellow who has climbed over thirty Munros, not all at once I hasten to add. He still finds himself smiling as he relives these climbs in his minds eye.

    1. Sadly today at differing moments, I came across two confused gentlemen both walking the local streets. Both were elderly and suffering from dementia. It led me consider how we fail as a society in caring for the elderly infirm. Fortunately in both circumstances people stepped in to help. I thank you for your comment Jane,

      1. As a modern, rich society, we fail to care for anybody who needs help. We’re too intent on rewarding the people who don’t, hoping that one day, we might be able to join them and wallow in the same bliss.

          1. That’s how I hope I’d behave too. There are enough ultra rich individuals in all European countries to make a big difference, but they prefer to keep all their money just in case they live for about a million years.

    1. Thank you Sascha. There are a couple of locations where it is possible to climb three Munros in a day. Star Trek will do fine for me. Beam me up Scotty, it’s the only way that I would manage three Munros.

  5. A creepy and atmospheric tale, indeed, Michael. There is a certain irony in North Korea developing another weapon altogether, while testing nuclear warheads as a diversion. Let’s hope this tale isn’t prophetic D:

    1. Thank you Sarah. I was pleased that this story worked. Sadly I can not write any more about Jim at present, as I am working on another long term writing project. Which I think will fill much of the time I put aside for writing.

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