TICK TOCK • by John Raybould

‘Tick Tock.’

Simon had been a clock maker for forty-three years, and had worked on thousands of them, but this was his favourite, the old skeleton-style church clock.

‘Tick Tock.’

This was definitely one of the largest, and had been a bit of a challenge. The ten-foot chime gear had jammed, and he’d had a real struggle to get it moving again.

‘Tick Tock.’

It was a pity that it would be his last. Dressed in his best shirt and tie, he would later that afternoon shake hands with his boss and graciously accept a carriage clock on his retirement.

‘Tick Tock.’

Adjusting his glasses, he leaned forward and peered closely at the gears.

‘Tick Tock.’

The hour hand moved to twelve.

‘Tick Tock.’

The gears spun and the clock began to chime midday. Simon could see with immense satisfaction how perfect the alignment of the teeth was as his head fell through the mechanism.

His wife had warned him about wearing the tie.


John Raybould was born on May 15th, 1953 in Chesterfield, England. He spent the best part of his teenage years in Adelaide, South Australia where he learnt the art of being laid back. Back in the UK, he has had a varied career and enjoys writing short stories. He plans to retire at 55 and write the book that we all have hidden away in our imaginations, and is only waiting for us to have time to write.


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Every Day Fiction