Short Story Sunday 257: Shelf

Short Story Sunday: Shelf | Creative Writing | Flash Fiction | Short Story |

“What are you doing?” Angie asked as she stood in the doorway to the basement. She had assumed her brother was watching TV and went to join him, but she could barely get into the room for fear she’d step on a rogue nail.

Shawn looked over his shoulder. He sat on the floor in the middle of the room surrounding by pieces of finished wood, nails, screws, and the like. His toolbox sat upon the couch where he could barely reach.

“I’m building a shelf.” He replied with a confident smile.

“Like… a flat shelf?” Angie asked moving her hands side to side horizontally. “Is this going to hang up on the wall?”

Shawn shook his head. “It’s a bookshelf. It’ll stand tall in the corner and hold stuff.”

“You mean like, books?” Angie couldn’t help but smirk.

“Or movies.”


“It has four shelves.” Shawn continued. He reached over a couple pieces of wood and grabbed the instructions on how to build it. He stretched his arm out to hand it to Angie who took it without saying a word. The front showed the shelf completely built.

“Wow,” Angie said impressed. “This looks like a good shelf. It’s going to be pretty tall.”

“I know,” Shawn chuckled.

“Do you really think you’ll be able to build it all by yourself?” she asked.

Shawn shrugged. “I don’t see why not.”

“Why were the instructions so far away from you, then?”

“I was just getting all the pieces out and in order, that’s all.” Shawn replied.

Angie couldn’t help but laugh. “You realize building a shelf isn’t like Legos, right?”

“I know.” Shawn scoffed.

“Okay, well have fun.” Angie tossed the instructions booklet back to him. She turned back around and headed up the stairs.

“Where are you going? Do you want to help? You know, brother and sister bonding?” Shawn asked with a grin.

Angie chuckled. She knew why Shawn hadn’t started yet. She knew why he had laid the pieces out and that was it. He was afraid to get started because, even with the instructions, he had no idea what he was doing.

“No, thanks.” She answered. “I’m going to go get Dad.”

“Why Dad?” Shawn asked.

“Because I see a drill sitting on the couch and I get the feeling that won’t end well for anyone.”

Shawn sighed. “Yeah… you’re probably right.”

Words: 396

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7 thoughts on “Short Story Sunday 257: Shelf

  1. This made me chuckle. It reminds me so much of myself and how I am so confident in my abilities to do something that I try a little too hard without knowing what I’m doing first. Great writing!

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