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The Right Advice - A Short Story

Updated on September 29, 2016
Jodah profile image

John has many years of writing experience in poetry, short fiction and text for children's books. Basically he just loves to write.

This is really my first attempt at writing a short story...well, let me rephrase first 'successful' attempt. I have stated to write a few but they remain unfinished for some reason or another.

I have been going through my old drafts (some more than 20 years old) and have been surprised at what I've found. I think I'll rework some of the stories and actually finish them off. Maybe I'm not as fussy now, but they actually seem better than I remembered.

As this is my first story to be put on public display, please be gentle with me...haha.

The Right Advice

by John Hansen © 2012

Lightning flashed across the city skyline, and was quickly followed by a booming clap of thunder. Gina Delrayo rose from the hot bath, numerous soap suds still clinging to her body. They say you can tell the closeness of lightning by counting the seconds between the flash and the thunder. One second representing one mile or something to that effect. Gina wondered if that were true, but wasn't taking the risk of getting fried in her own bath.

She dried off, and wrapping the towel around her, walked slowly into the bedroom. Thunder roared once more, and Gina felt strangely nervous. Storms had never worried her before so she couldn't explain the feeling.

Sitting down at her dressing table she picked up a brush and ran it through her long auburn hair. "Sam!" she called, "Sam!" but there was no response. Never mind, she thought, he's probably hiding somewhere. He was a real 'scaredy cat' when it came to storms. He'd show himself when it was over.

Someone must have walked over your grave

Gina continued brushing her hair. 'One hundred brush strokes each night before bed," her mother had always told her, and subconsciously Gina had always heeded that advice, even though the dear lady had since passed away.

A sudden shiver ran down Gina's spine, the kind you often experience when someone walks close behind you. More of her mother's wise words came to mind. "Someone must have walked over your grave," she would have said smiling. Gina failed to notice the reflection in the mirror of a dark figure slipping silently through her bedroom door.

The storm seemed to be abating now. The rain had eased, and the thunder was now just a dull grumble in the distance. Gina put down the hair brush and switched the radio on. She stood up, untucking the towel and carefully placed it over the back of the chair.

She lightly sprinkled talcum powder on her slim body, enjoying the feeling as she rubbed it in. Girlfriends had commented on her great figure, and she had to admit to attracting wolf whistles on more than one occasion. However Gina was still a virgin at 25. She always felt vulnerable in the presence of men and wasn't willing to take risks. she had to be sure of the persons sincerity first.

Sliding open the door to her closet Gina took a blue satin nightgown off the second hanger from the left. She always hung her clothes in a certain order. It was a habit she'd got herself into, and it did make life easier. was so unsettlingly quiet that Gina could hear her own heart pounding...

Slipping into the nightgown, Gina paused for a moment- listening. That same uneasiness had come over her again and she thought she could smell something odd. Her senses were working overtime. She turned the radio down and there was no other sound. In fact it was so unsettlingly quiet that Gina could hear her own heart pounding in her chest from the tension.

"Sam!" she called again, hoping his appearance would reassure her. But her calls were once again in vain. Where could he be? The storm was over so he should have come out of hiding by now.

Suddenly, a powerful arm closed around Gina's body pinning her arms to her sides. She tried to scream but a calloused hand clamped over her mouth and the only sound that escaped was a muffled moan. A gruff voice snapped, "Your dog's taking a nap. Shut up or you'll join him!"

Gina struggled to free herself, but her attacker was twice her weight and held her like a vice. Her feet dangled above the ground and she kicked at his legs, but this had little effect. In fact he seemed amused by her feeble efforts and said sarcastically,"I love it when you play hard to get."

She was overpowered by the pungent smell of his aftershave...

He carried Gina across the room effortlessly and threw her onto the bed as though she were a small child. She tried to scramble off but he grabbed her by the hair and pulled her back fiercely.

"Please!" Gina pleaded, "There's money in the bedside table. Take it and anything else you want, but don't harm me."

"That's very generous of you," he replied, opening the drawer. "$200 just where you said," he sneered, "Now to collect the rest of your offer."

"What else do you want?" Gina asked in terrified innocence. The nightgown had ridden up during the struggle exposing her lower body.

"This!" he said sharply, and thrust his hand between her legs. Gina jumped back at this invasion of her womanhood, and struck out at her attacker. However he caught the punch easily before it connected and twisted her arm sharply.

"Naughty, naughty," he chided, "No more of that. Just relax and enjoy the experience."

Gina started to scream, but it was cut short as she felt something cold and sharp press against her throat.

"Don't make me use the knife," he warned calmly.

"Why are you doing this?" Gina sobbed.

"Why? Because I like you," he joked. "Now be quiet and don't move." With that he removed his belt, and using it, bound Gina's wrists.

She was overpowered by the pungent smell of his aftershave as he climbed on top of her. Controlling herself, she lay statue like as he used the knife to cut open her nightgown. She felt his rough hands on her breasts, and clenched her teeth tightly as he attempted to rape her.

A place for everything, and everything in its place

My letter opener with the Centrepoint tower handle
My letter opener with the Centrepoint tower handle | Source

Gina was lying diagonally across the bed, and her violator failed to notice as she slowly reached her bound hands above her head and picked up something from the bedside table. "A place for everything, and everything in its place," she recalled her mother saying, as she plunged the object with all her strength.

A loud, guttural bellow burst from the man's mouth as he lurched backwards, a brass handle protruding from his left eye socket. "You've blinded me you bitch!" he screamed as he dashed from the room, blood gushing from the wound.

"Join the club!" Gina yelled angrily after him.

Surprisingly composed after her ordeal, she quickly found the telephone and dialed '000' the emergency number.

The letter opener lay on the floor where it had been thrown. Gina's mother had brought it home from Sydney after visiting a hospital there while having cancer treatment. She had given it to her daughter as a gift. Gina had always thought what a silly present to give a blind person- with it's brass miniature Centre Point Tower for a handle. She couldn't read letters, so why open them. Gina had kept it purely for sentimental reasons, but tonight it had definitely proved its worth, and from now on would rate as her most cherished possession.

Gina looked up and could see her mother's smiling face. "Thanks Mom," she said, "You probably saved my life."

Just then she felt something wet against her cheek, as a now conscious Sam, her Golden Labrador seeing-eye dog, jumped up and began to lick her face excitedly. "Hello Boy, I was worried about you," she said petting him gently as they waited for the police to arrive.


John Hansen 2013


NOTE: I am the author of this story, and it is owned by me in entirety. It is not available for use by reproducing in any form(images excluded) without my express written permission. If you see all or any part of this article (as written) on another site, please notify me where it can be found.


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    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      4 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you, John. This is one of my oldest stories. I am glad it held your interest throughout.

    • profile image


      4 years ago

      This story is gripping and suspenseful. It held my interest from beginning to end. Excellent story.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 years ago from Queensland Australia

      I look forward to one day reading some of your stories wordswithlove. Thanks again.

    • wordswithlove profile image

      Neetu M 

      5 years ago from USA

      Oh, I understand the fondness for the first one, John! My first was like that, too. I haven't published any of mine here, but maybe one day, I will. The first one gives a sense of release that becomes a catalyst for the next and the next...

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      5 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for reading this story wordswothlove, I am glad I succeeded in keeping you engrossed. I have written a few short stories since this and am more confident writing them now, but this being my first I have a soft spot for it.

    • wordswithlove profile image

      Neetu M 

      5 years ago from USA

      Really well written, John. I like the way you have constructed the story, keeping the reader engrossed. Congratulations on a great completed short story!

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      6 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Kim, thanks for that great comment. That means a lot from a wonderful story teller like yourself. Glad the ending was a surprise for you, it's what every short fiction writer wants to achieve. Your visit is much appreciated. Take care.

    • klidstone1970 profile image

      இڿڰۣ-- кιмвєяℓєу 

      6 years ago from Niagara Region, Canada

      Hi John,

      Great short story and love the twist at the end. It had me whispering WOW!! Now that's the way to have your reader totally engrossed...awesome!


    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      6 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for reading ChitrangadaSharan. Yes it was the first story that I ever published. I have written a couple more since. I am glad it held your interest.

    • ChitrangadaSharan profile image

      Chitrangada Sharan 

      6 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Very interesting story and it kept the interest from beginning till end.

      And you say it is your first one! Congratulations and voted up!

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      7 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Thanks Randy, Appreciate you checking out my hub and good to meet you too.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      7 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you for checking this hub out Audrey. Glad you enjoyed it.

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      7 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Hi Nellieanna, Glad this little story had the 'wow!' factor for you. Thanks for your generous encouragement and kind comments once again...oh and for the tip about the lowercase letter, I hadn't noticed, but since fixed that.

      What a coincidence one of you friends married a Hansen. Small world. I

      hope this wasn't my only and best short fiction story....we'll see.

    • Randy Godwin profile image

      Randy Godwin 

      7 years ago from Southern Georgia

      Interesting tale! Always pleased to meet another fellow creative writer on HP.


    • AudreyHowitt profile image

      Audrey Howitt 

      7 years ago from California

      Very good! I enjoyed this!

    • Nellieanna profile image

      Nellieanna Hay 

      7 years ago from TEXAS

      Oh, wow! What a great story! It has everything: great setup, fantastic characterization and visuals, suspense building from one scary threat to others, some clearly present, some just suggested. One wonders why she didn't see the figure of the man looming at the door at first, but it isn't revealed till after the big suspense and climax that she CAN'T see him. Her mother's advice is even slowly built up to the main bit of advice which saves her life - that everything in its place allows her to reach for the weapon that saves her from a dreadful fate. How great that the impostor only numbed Sam. I was a little concerned for Sam when he threatened Gina with "the same thing" if she didn't cooperate.

      All I can say is WOW.

      (Small edit detail: Several sentences begin with lower-case letters. You might want to fix them.)

      By the way, I'm pleased to know you by your real name. As it happens one of my oldest friends married a man with your last name. How about that?

      Congratulations of the launch of your fiction-writing 'career' here - and who knows where it will take you. You're G-O-O-D!

    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      7 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Thank you Jaye,

      Your comments mean a lot as you are such an accomplished short fiction writer yourself. Thanks for voting up.

    • JayeWisdom profile image

      Jaye Denman 

      7 years ago from Deep South, USA

      This is a good debut story, Jodah. You set the story up well, with a strong ending. You'll find that writing short fiction gets in your blood!

      Voted Up++ and shared


    • Jodah profile imageAUTHOR

      John Hansen 

      7 years ago from Queensland Australia

      What an encouraging first comment. Thanks for that Bill, I appreciate it.

    • billybuc profile image

      Bill Holland 

      7 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Love the story; love the ending; love the message. Well done, John!


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