Fast Fiction Challenge Classics – I Always Hated You

Posted: 22 February 2013 in fast fiction, fiction, Uncategorized, writing
Tags: , ,

I’ve always been fascinated when people maintain “I’ve always thought…” or “I’ve never believed…”

Jeremy Paxman, in his wonderful examination of British politics and politicians entitled The Political Animal, notes that only in politics and religion is it regarded as an advantage never to have changed your mind. And he doesn’t regard it as a coincidence.

So when my friend Jess Nevins challenged me with the title to the following story, I knew I was in for an interesting tale. Oh yes, I find writing these stories as fascinating as, hopefully, you find reading them.

(Please note that Jess declined to supply a word to use in the story, merely the title.)


Title: I Always Hated You
no word supplied
Challenger: Jess Nevins
Length: 200 words exactly

I never liked the way you were always at home in any social setting: how you’d walk into a room where there were thirty different people, none of whom knew each other, and half an hour later, there’d be six or seven different conversations going on, with you drifting from one to another as if you’d known them all your life. All the time, that smug half-smile on your face that others found endearing and that you swore was merely relief at getting through it.

I loathed the way you pretended not to know how attractive the other sex found you; you couldn’t not have known, not with the way you responded to every person who wanted your ear, acting brash with one, bashful with another, flirtatious with a third… and each of them convinced they knew the real you.

I found it contemptible how effortlessly you found it, settling down with me – how could you have genuinely been happy settling for a wife and children when you so obviously enjoyed the spontaneity that familial obligations denied you?

And then you died, you bastard, before I could tell you again that I loved you.

And I hate you for that.

© Lee Barnett, 2006

“There are two hundred stories collected in this volume. They are funny, they are thoughtful, they are romantic, they are frightening. To me, though, they are more than entertaining. They are inspiring.” – Wil Wheaton, from his introduction to volume 2 of The Fast Fiction Challenge

Two volumes of The Fast Fiction Challenge, containing 180 stories in Volume 1 and a further 200 stories in Volume 2, are available from, and in some countries on Amazon. ebooks available from the author; email for details.

Buy the ebook of You’ll Never Believe A Man Can Fly for £4.99 – click here

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