The Waiting Man


July 25, 2012 by jcfarnham

So I’ve been talking a lot about how I’m a writer. I’m well aware that not many, if any, of you have ever seen much of my writing. Well, I suppose this is my way of pre-emptively silencing people I call “prove its”.

So here it is. A bit of flash fiction for you. A bit of what ever genre you feel you want it to be 😉


He wore a sharply pressed black suit, stainless white shirt, and a thin black tie. He would have blended in perfectly with the big city rush hour crowds, briefcase and all, if only he weren’t a walking contradiction. Just like every body else around him and yet not. Normal, regular, boring even, and yet abnormal, irregular, and bizarrely out of place. Salary-men on their way to the office stared at the strange man as they passed. He stood pin straight, facing with his back to the metro line stair way. He did not flinch. His gaze did not falter. He did not blink.

He simply waited.

For that was what he did – The media would come to call him the Waiting Man.

Hours passed. People came and went and subsequently came once again, and still he was there. Into twilight he waited, until the stroke of midnight precisely when he crouched down low to the ground, placed his briefcase on the floor and opened it. From within, the man pulled a plain brown manilla folder, which he studied for second, wrote an addendum to his documents, and placed them back in the briefcase.

He stood and resumed his previous task; never blinking, never yawning, never sleeping, never eating, nor stopping quench his thirst. He would not, nay, could not break.


On the dawn of the following day, the Waiting Man found himself surrounded by government agents

“Sir, we’re going to have to ask you to move on,” A stern voiced agent spoke. The sooner he got the man to move, the sooner he could collect his winnings. They had a bet on back at HQ on when this kook would finally move. The enterprising young man wasn’t about to lose to his colleagues. Thus, he would make the Waiting Man move.

Their quarry raised a finger, to his lips. “Shhh.”

“Sir. Come with us. We are the Government. If you won’t cooperate peacfully, we can do this by force,” The young agent would not back down.

“I must stay.”

“You’re making some powerful people awfully nervous.”

“I must stay”

“I’m sorry,” the Agent trained his gun on the Waiting Man, “I’m sorry, but I can’t allow that. Please. Come with us.”

The man stood his ground. No emotion crossed his face. He hadn’t flinched at civilians and he would not do so for these men either.

An shill alarm pierced the moment. The Waiting Man raised his arm and looked at the time on the ancient digital wristwatch.

5:33 am, it blinked.

He turned off the alarm, and shifted his attention slowly back the agents surrounding him. The man bowed his bald head. It glinted in the dawn-light. “I, too, am sorry,” he said, “Sorry for what I am about to do … for what I must do.”


5:35 am.

Five government agents found by their fellows, unconscious, badly wounded, but thankfully alive.

What’s more, the Waiting Man had moved on.


2 thoughts on “The Waiting Man

  1. James Devlin says:

    That was great! I hope I get to read more!

  2. Jc Farnham says:

    Thanks a lot! Perhaps the Waiting Man will reappear some day…

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