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Similies and Metaphors

Task: Choose a book at random and open at a random page. Select the first five similies and metaphors, then use them in a story

‘I’m not coming out!’

These were the only words Andrew had heard through the door for the last fifteen minutes. Whenever anyone said anything to him they had all received the same monotonous refrain. Now it was time for action. He inhaled and pushed his back into the wall, his mind contorting through a variety of plans, searching for the solution that he knew was tantalisingly close. His ideas seemed to move on a deeper level than most people’s, like eternal roots spreading below a layer of manure rather than the short-lived blooming flowers above.

Suddenly - the proverbial light bulb.

He straightened up, checked the corridor to the left and right, then held his bow-tie in position as he kicked with all his might at the door opposite him. It didn’t give.

‘Whoa!’ said the voice behind it.

Andrew exhaled and aimed again at the lock. This time the wood splintered and the door swung open.

Brendan was sitting on the toilet like a king on a throne. Well, a king in a deep state of shock as though he was to be led to the gallows. ‘What the fuck do you think you’re doing?’ There was something of a monarch about him in his grand gesture of dismay.

‘Put your jacket on and get out there!’ ordered Andrew, having decided that the good-cop approach was not going to work.

‘W-what gives you the right to come … bursting in here -’ stammered Brendan - ‘like a-a thief on a search for the crown jewels?’

Andrew grabbed the jacket from the hook behind the door and held it out. ‘Stop stalling. The orchestra are ready. Everyone’s waiting.’

‘I know. I heard them tuning-up earlier. Saw them standing around, holding their violin-bows like rifles at the ready...’ Brendan’s explanation trailed away.

To Andrew, he looked small at that moment. As small as when they first met all those years ago. ‘Mate. I know you better than anyone. I know you love Teresa and you gave me the job to make sure you got to that altar to say “I do”. Well - she’s in the car outside and wondering what the fuck’s going on. I’ve stalled as long as I can. They all think you’ve had a wardrobe malfunction, whereas I know it’s a bloody brain malfunction. So, Brendan. Focus. And walk down that aisle or I’ll be forced to carry your unconscious body over my shoulder and say the speeches on your behalf. That may, of course, mean that I would be married to Teresa within the hour, causing no matter of chaos amongst the guests, the caterers and, no doubt, my own sweet wife. So to assist me out of this impending legal and moral nightmare, get your arse off that seat, put this on and go and get married.’

Brendan opened his mouth to speak.

‘No. Say nothing.’

Brendan’s mouth closed.

Andrew put the jacket on him, brushed the shoulders, straightened his friend’s bow-tie, looked him in the eye, smiled and hugged him tight, whispering, ‘I’ll tell them to charge the bride’s father for the door.’


The five metaphors and similes are from Graham Greene’s A Sense of Reality.


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