The Broken Clock

By Sue Clennell

sfgenreJane's parents used to rent out a house. They gave it up when the last tenant disappeared owing them money, and they found the place trashed. Towel rails were ripped out of the wall, and all the furniture, even the electric lightbulbs, were gone. All that remained was a broken wooden clock on the floor.

It was a stylish timepiece, so Jane’s mother and father took it home to have it repaired.

It was hung on the wall directly opposite their french windows.

Soon, Jane's mother began complaining that one of the french window doors opened out every night. Her parents tried putting a strong bolt on the door, but still it kept swinging open. They also told Jane that if they switched on the light after midnight they’d see a shadow in the room that didn't belong to anything.

“I reckon the clock is haunted,” said Jane's dad, “And that's why the clock was broken. The tenants were trying to break its magic.”

“Oh come on, Dad,” said Jane, “This is the twenty-first century, after all!”

Jane took the clock home with her. Wheeling it up her drive she heard a smart-alec call out, “Hey, have you got the time, love?” 'The world is full of idiots,' she thought, 'And I always get them.'

Undeterred by its history, Jane hung the clock on the lounge wall, facing her bedroom further down the passage.

At midnight exactly, the bedroom door quietly opened…

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About The Author

Sue Clennell

Sue Clennell has had three plays performed in Sydney & Canberra’s Short & Sweet Festivals, and short stories published in newspapers and journals. Two poems from her poetry CD, ‘The Van Gogh Cafe’ may be viewed on youtube at: bit.ly/1wdTfcM

 

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In The Next Issue...

Coming In Issue 233

Asset Class
by Matthew Harrison

Build Blast
By Douglas J. Ogurek

Home Hardware & Rentals
By Zebuline Carter

Iron Will
By David Whitaker

Neoanderthals
By Darren Lipnicki

The Drop Out
By David Scholes

The Maiming Fields
By Kevin J. Phyland

The Numbers Danced
By Laurie Bell

This Page Unintentionally Left Blank
By Wesley Parish

Totally AI
By Kevin J. Phyland

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SF News

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SCIENCE FICTION: A POSITIVE SOCIAL INFLUENCE

Take a listen to Dr. Alan Finkel, Australia’s chief scientist on Radio National’s “Big Ideas” with Paul Barclay, who sums up Finkel’s speech in the following way:

“Our future leaders and policy makers should read more science fiction…scifi can be useful for the building of a good society.”

You can find the program audio here: <http://radio.abc.net.au/programitem/pgM7rLEl26>, originally broadcast on ABC Radio National on Tuesday September 19 2017.

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