Submitted into Contest #238 in response to: Write a story including the line “I can’t say it.”... view prompt


Funny Urban Fantasy Friendship


“What are you hiding behind your back Leonard? Do not even think about saying nothing, I saw you go to the mail box and take out a letter. Who is it from?”

“It’s nothing that concerns you Jessica. I do have the right to some privacy. You will be the first to be told if it is something you need to know about.”

“Another letter of demand isn’t it? You are in trouble with your gambling excesses again aren’t you? How many times have I warned you of what will happen if do not control your betting? You are an absolute …..,  well  you know what I mean.”

“Two things, first I haven’t opened the envelope yet, it could be from anyone, secondly why don’t you say what you mean. What is the absolute what you say I am? Spit it out.”

“You know what I mean. I don’t have to say it. I do not lower myself to use those sort of words.”

“Oh really? You only think them, is that it? Well in my world the thought is as bad, or as good in some cases, as the deed. Go on, let yourself go, say the word. Come on say it out loud. I’ll give you a clue, ‘Leonard you are a, four letters beginning with ‘f’ followed by wit’. You have heard the word before. In fact I have vivid memories of you using the ‘f’ word not that long ago, do you want me to remind you?”

“Don’t be disgusting, that was an entirely different situation and you know it. I just repeated some of what you say in the excitement of that situation. Not all though, there are a couple of those type of words I would never use in any circumstance. Anyway whether I say the word or not doesn’t solve your present problem.”

“What problem? You are the one who has the problem. First you assume the letter is about money and on that basis alone you describe me as a, what was it?”

“Stop right there Leonard. I am not going to repeat myself.”

“You cannot repeat something you haven’t said Jessica. You only inferred I am a ….., What was it you didn’t say?”

“You know very well I cannot say it out loud.”

“Wrong room is it? You were loud and clear in another part of the home last week.”

“I will treat that remark as facetious and ignore it. Just open the letter and let’s see if you deserve my description of you.”

“What description was that? I didn’t hear you define anything.”

“You know what I mean. If the letter relates to your gambling excesses I am totally justified in describing you as one.”

“One what? Come on you cannot say you are justified without actually voicing the word you are using to describe me. It is not a long word. We are in the privacy of our own home, no-one, besides me, will hear you say it.”

“I would hear me saying it. I am not no-one.”

“Sorry, wrong phrasing. You are not no-one and I am not a ,…… what was it you said in your mind?”

“Don’t play games with me Leonard, it won’t work. What is in the letter?”

“The letter I have yet to open, the unopened letter which caused you to call me a,….. what was the term you almost used? That letter?"

“Yes. Open it now and we will see if calling you one of those is justified. If I am wrong and it isn’t anything to do with you owing money, I will apologise.”

“And what will you call me then?”

“I haven’t thought that far ahead because I don’t believe I am wrong. If I am I will think of a suitable name.”

“What is the opposite of what you called me, answer me that?”

“I didn’t call you anything.”

“I think you should add ‘out loud’ to that particular statement because you actually thought it. What was it again……. something ‘wit’, quite derogatory and also crude when you add the first part?”

“What is it you are hiding if it isn’t gambling debts? Is it from a woman? Have you been, you know what I mean with another woman?”

“God help me. We are back where we started. All because you won’t use the word you are now accusing me of doing with another woman. Say what you mean.”

“You know I cannot say that word. Anyway we are back where we started because you won’t open the letter, not because I cannot say it. You still haven’t opened it. Answer me Leonard, is there a woman writing letters to you?”

“That is possible.”

“Ah ha. I knew it. At last you admit it. Who is she?”

“Earth to Jessica. You are not listening. I said possible. Until I open it I do not know if it is from a man or a woman.  If we ignore the possibility of AI being involved, both are possible. Regardless of which one actually wrote this letter I am not doing anything with either of them. Certainly the word you cannot say with ‘ing’ added is not involved.”

“Give me the letter, I’ll open it.”

“That would be highly irregular, and as I understand it against the law.”

“You are being deliberately obtuse Leonard, give me the letter or open it yourself now. Against the law, what sort of rubbish is that?”

“It is illegal to open any mail addressed to another person without their permission. I thought everyone knew that.”

“Forgive my ignorance, however I do believe that does not apply to your own mail. One does not require anyone’s permission to open your own mail.”

“Exactly. Thank you for proving my point. If you read the envelope you will see this letter is addressed to our next door neighbour Mr Arthur Blakely. The postman made a mistake.”

“Why didn’t you say so instead of making me suspicious of you gambling again?”

“And don’t forget the accusation of doing you know what with another woman. It was an opportunity I couldn’t resist to possibly get you to swear out loud. You remain your prudish self. I am going next door and giving Arthur his mail. Back soon.”

“What a fuckwit.”

“I heard that.”

February 18, 2024 22:23

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Brian Bywater
04:43 Mar 25, 2024

Thank you Darvico. This sort of discussion continued long after my childhood. Cheers


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Darvico Ulmeli
21:30 Feb 28, 2024

Enoyed. Rembers me of conversation I used to have with people when I was a kid. Nice one.


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