What a bleeding disaster thought Phil: I’m late for my own brother’s funeral.

He’d been having a few drinks to Brian’s memory before setting off, and then Fingers had come into the pub and offered him some stolen smartphones and they’d got talking about a price and he’d just lost track of the time. He’d have missed the funeral service by now, but might just make it to the actual burial if he stepped on it. He put his foot down, and his red Porsche 911 speeded up further.

Inside the cemetery Phil’s sister was at the family plot, silently cursing him. He’d never been there for Brian. He hadn’t been there when Brian died, and now he’d missed the bloody funeral. Brian deserved better. He’d been a great brother, always looking out for Phil when he hit a bad patch, and always doing his best for her, with money and moral support. She still couldn’t believe he was dead. He’d been so full of life, always laughing and joking. As she stood there under a leaden sky in the drizzle and cold, the tears began to spill over. When the vicar finished speaking, she picked up a handful of earth with a sob and threw it on the coffin. There was a pebble in it, which rattled on the lid.

Suddenly from inside the coffin came a muffled shout and a thump. The mourners and the vicar stared at the coffin in shock. Then they heard another yell from inside it. Brian wasn’t dead. He was narcoleptic, and he’d just woken up. He kicked the coffin again, and one of the undertakers hastily produced a screwdriver and unscrewed the lid.

Brian took it all in – his coffin, his grave, the undertakers, the vicar and the mourners looking down at him. What a terrible awakening: first complete darkness, and now this absolute horror. He’d nearly been buried alive! He couldn’t stand being in his own grave, he had to get away from it. He frantically scrambled out and ran off, out of the cemetery into the road, where – BANG –  he was hit by a speeding red Porsche 911 and killed.

Paul Murgatroyd


Art by Fernando Correa