Short story: Cafe Disparaît


For two weeks the bicycle leaned against the tree outside Cafe Disparaît. Then one day its front wheel was gone, and the next, its saddle. Tipped forward onto its front forks, the bike stared at the ground, waiting. Above it was a sun-bleached poster of a cyclist. Eventually a waiter, irritated from catching his apron on the bike’s handlebars, mentioned it to a Gendarme eating croque monsieur in the shade of the restaurant’s awning. A week later he came by with pair of bolt cutters and threw the bicycle into the back of his van. The poster had torn and flopped forward, only the word PERDUE* could still be seen.


*Missing in French
This is part of the Friday Fictioneers writing group – where writers from all over write about 100 words using a photo as inspiration. This week the photo has been provided by anelephantcant. Click here to read other people’s and to join in.

For those of you who’ve read my pieces before and know I’ve been writing a novel, you might be interested to hear that Our Endless Numbered Days just been bought by Fig Tree / Penguin in the UK and has also been bought by publishers in several other countries. Naturally I’m absolutely delighted. It will be published in early 2015. If you’re interested there is a bit more information here from The Bookseller.

48 thoughts on “Short story: Cafe Disparaît

  1. Hi Claire,
    Big congrats on the acceptance of your novel. I look forward t reading it when it comes out. Your story has great atmosphere and I liked the use of French, even though it sent me to my Larousse dictionary. Now I know a few more words or that beautiful language, thanks to you. Ron


  2. Congratulations on your book, Claire! I look forward to buying it and reading it when it becomes available. Enjoyable story and original take on the photo prompt. A pleasure to read! Penny


  3. Enjoyed this flash. Glad I wasn’t eating the croque monsieur. Happily vegetarian. Congrats on the book being published. I didn’t know that several publishers could buy a manuscript.


  4. Pingback: Dyke on a Bike – Friday Fictioneers | Being the Memoirs of Helena Hann-Basquiat, Dilettante.

  5. Fantastic flash! The ending was an extra twist for me. I read it again and saw how cleverly it all fitted together. Sad.

    Congratulations on your book too! Good luck with that!


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