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Geoff's Choice

Guest Miranda

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Story Title: Geoff’s Choice

Type of story: Oneshot.

Main Characters: Geoff Campbell, various others are mentioned.

BTTB rating: G

Does story include spoilers: Yes

Is story being proof read: No

Any warnings: None.

Summary: Set after the Olympic cliffhanger. After trying to save Nicole, an injured Geoff is washed up on a beach. Hovering between life and death, he sees his futures ahead of him.


I’d like people’s opinion of my story- especially the ending. I don’t know what genre to classify it as so I don’t know what people will think of it. It just came over me after watching the Olympic cliffhanger and the film The Seventh Seal: they seemed to merge in my head and produce this story.


The blond boy was washed up on the shore, slowly, as the tide caressed him gently higher and higher up the stones. There he lay, limbs flung out, hanging at rest, eyes closed.

By the grassy dunes sat a figure, hooded, in black. It watched the boy. Both still as a word on a page.


The boy stirred. His mind clicked, faltered and fuzzily tuned into an old man’s face.

‘Get on with it!’ growled the man, frowning.

‘But Pop, I can’t work any faster!’ Geoff protested. His back ached and he had done enough digging for the day And he was sure he had hurt his leg, it was sore.

‘There’s no-one else to do it!’

Geoff shrugged. Pop was right. There wasn’t.

‘You’re doing an honest day’s work in the eyes of the Lord. Be satisfied with that.’ Pop strode off, unbowed by age or fatigue.

His grandson considered this. The work of the Lord needed doing, that was for sure. So many people didn’t do an honest day’s work: they needed help and guidance.


The blond boy turned his head on the sand. The dark figure watched implacably. The scene shifted.


‘Well done Luc!’

Geoff shook hands with Lucas, smiling at the enemy who had become a friend.

‘You’ve done really well to get into university, it sounds like a great course!’

Lucas smiled back. ‘Thanks. Its exactly what I wanted.’

‘You’re following your dream. That’s good.’

‘Yes, it is. What about you? What about your dream?’

Geoff shrugged. ‘I’m- well- kind of tied to the farm right now.’

‘But don’t let that stop you! That’s not your dream. You’re such a talented footballer- don’t waste that!’

‘But what about my leg?’

Lucas shrugged. ‘It’ll heal. Go for what you want.’


Geoff’s eyelids twitched. The soft swish of the swell whispered round him, telling him secrets of life in between worlds. The dark figure belonged to one world or the other: but which one? It was there for a reason: but what?


‘I like you, Nic. I really like you.’ He’d blurted it out, like an idiot, on the beach that day.

What had he hoped for? That she would fall into his arms like in the movies? That she would confess her secret hidden love for him? That her heartbreak over Aden had been a front to cover her real feelings? But she hadn’t said anything like that. She’d pushed him away and run off, then turned to Elliott.

But after Elliot had gone, Geoff had spent time with her and he had fallen into hope again. And when Elliott had left them the second time, stranded underwater in that slow, blue, hazy world, Geoff knew in his heart that his business with Nicole was not over.


The dark figure on the shore cocked its head as if listening, while the blond boy lay ominously still.


The man Geoff rested his pen by his book. It was his only leather bound book, bought specially for writing his sermons. This one was about selflessness: how it is easy to look after yourself, but harder to think of others and do your duty as a Christian.

He thought about his duty. He had carried it out as thoroughly as anyone could: training for years as a minister, working tirelessly in a run down parish with the needy, becoming a friend and supporter to all.

He knew Pop was proud of him even though he had been dead for so long. Annie was proud of him, as she lived her life happily with her husband and four children. Geoff was spiritually fulfilled.


‘And Campbell scores! He wins the game! The crowd go wild!’

Geoff was submerged in a mass of his team mates all shouting and trying to hug him. The whistle had gone, the championship was theirs.

After the match, Geoff and the team were besieged by the press. They couldn’t get enough of the victorious players - what a final!

In the after match interviews, Geoff relived every tackle, every kick, every throw. He was on top of the world and couldn’t stop grinning.

‘Mr Campbell, is it true that as a boy, you thought your career as a footballer was over due to a serious injury?’

‘Yes. I was hit by a car once and I thought my leg would never recover, but it did.’ It still twinged occasionally, but Geoff never let on.

‘I bet you’re glad it did!’ smiled the reporter.

‘I sure am.’ Geoff’s dreams had all come true: he would never regret following them.


‘Dad! Dad!’ The blond boy ran towards his father, laughing happily. ‘Look what I’ve found!’

His father swung him up in the air. ‘Hey champ! What you got?’

The little boy, who was about six or seven, produced a stone with a hole in it.

‘Tea’s ready!’ came a shout from the house. ‘Geoff! Bring the kids in now!’

‘Mum’s bossy,’ giggled the little boy.

‘Yes, but she knows best,’ smiled Geoff, collecting his other three children, who were playing in the field. He looked back to the house. It was perfect for a family: set in the wide open country the Campbells had grown up in, with so much room to run around in, shout and have fun.

Geoff’s wife waved from the door. ‘Come on slow coach!’

She was as pretty as she’d ever been: he still lusted after her even after twelve years of marriage. She had led him a merry dance before they got married- there had been so many ups and downs in their relationship before they had settled, but in the end, it had all been worth it.

Geoff limped back to the house, his children running all round him, laughing and playing.

‘Still having trouble with your leg?’ asked his wife, with a brief look of concern.

‘Nothing to worry about.’ He gave Nicole a kiss, slapping her bottom as she dodged away, giggling, to serve the family tea.


On the beach, Geoff came to with a great gasp, drawing in the sea air as his lungs fired into life. The pain in his harpooned leg was unbearable. He didn’t want to look at it, he was sure it could not be saved.

Faint remembrances passed through his mind: a leather bound book, a sports trophy, a family home in a field. But right now he was on a stony beach: how would he get from here to his futures? How should he decide?

He glanced up. A figure in a black hooded robe stood in front of him. It seemed familiar. He looked right into its face: deathly white, a fixed mask of destiny. He held his breath. The figure reached out towards him, then faded into light. Geoff closed his eyes.


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