Short story

Winslow Diaries #1

7 minute read

[Old newspaper cutout: New Tribune London, date illegible]


London was attacked late last night in a surprise military air strike which followed the detonation of several high caliber bombs (including inside St. Pancras station). The attack has not yet been claimed but Coalition forces are believed to have been involved.

At the time of writing, there are unconfirmed reports of military vessels docking off the coast of Portsmouth and Brighton. Several readers also reported gunfire near the old Eurostar tunnel, which collapsed in the late fifties and was since thought in-operational. Sc… [illegible]

Prime Minister Barrow’s whereabouts are uncertain, as are those of most of his Cabinet. Citizens are urged to flee North as invading forces are reported to [page is torn]

By unanimous decision, the reporters of the New Tribune will continue to report on developments until this is no longer possible.

If you are reading this, good luck and God bless us all.


[From the diary of Winslow, last name unknown.]

My dad tells me to stay away from the windows. He says the world has gone to hell, that I don’t understand. I think he underestimates me.

When I was ten the neighbours were raided by the military police. They were dragged to the street, made to kneel on the sidewalk and shot one by one until only Maggie was left. The squad leader (I think he’s the one my dad calls “the colonel”) whispered something in her ear and let her live. It’s been three years and she hasn’t spoken a word since. After that we started taking the curfew a lot more seriously.

Anyway – he’s afraid because I’m no longer a little girl. I get it. But life in London isn’t so bad (for the most part). There are other places much worse off.

Gotta go, dad just told me to switch off the light.


Today I went with dad to renew my homeschooling permit. I hate going to the City. After suffering through the crowds in the tube you finally get there and all you see are the police uniforms and the barking dogs. I prefer our neighbourhood, it’s a lot quieter. It went ok though, my dad knows people there. From the looks we got homeschooling is pretty rare.

Dad is moody lately, he works too hard. Mom’s birthday is coming up, which doesn’t help. AND we had trouble sleeping yesterday because of all the helicopters. Who knows where they were going. Maggie also came to her window, we waved at each other from across the street.

Winnie out.


Went to meet Tom and Angie today, we hung out at the arcade. At one point Tom looked like he wanted to kiss me. What. The. Hell.

On the way home near Piccadilly I walked past a group of Academy boys – I used to be jealous of kids who went to school but changed my mind, they all turn into weirdos with their badges and smug faces. Idiots!

Curfew is earlier every week, we have to be inside by 7pm now. My dad says that attacks are becoming more frequent near the outskirts. Our neighbour said that a few days ago the military police took out a whole building (they were harbouring terrorists).

Enough for tonight, I’m exhausted!



Had my birthday party today! It was great – Tommy, Angie, Jill and even Maggie came over. (Basically I went across the street to her place yesterday and invited her over. She didn’t say anything but smiled at me and showed up today wearing a nice dress. Dad was a bit pissed off that I went there without his permission but I think that’s just because he worries too much.) She’s actually nice, you just have to accept she doesn’t talk much.

As a present, Dad got me a super old GameBoy – very cool! He’s worried that someone will see me with it (it’s kind of a collector’s piece and since they closed the borders this type of thing is worth a lot of money).

I had a great day, sweet 13 :)



Grounded, AGAIN! Dad caught me outside after curfew, he went into a fit…


Today we went to visit Grandma at the retirement home. She looks even tinier than last time but that’s normal, she turns 94 this year! Dad says she’s strong because she lived most of her life in the countryside, away from the pollution.

She was sitting by the window as usual and didn’t talk much. She always smiles at me but I’m not sure she remembers who I am. I like her eyes, they’re big and blue. Mine are sort of grey, like dad’s.

I don’t like the home, it looks too much like a hospital. But the workers there seem nice and dad spent some time speaking to one of the nurses. She told him that his sister came to visit last week with my cousins. They don’t talk much, I only met her a couple of times. She smokes like a chimney.

Later Dad asked me what I want for my birthday and I said I want mom back. I don’t know why, it just came out. He stared at me for a bit, gave me a hug and then went upstairs. When I went to bed the door to his room was closed. I felt horrible.

I can be so stupid sometimes.


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