Shortcut: The Fear (short story)

Lena is a 17-year-old girl who is in her room getting ready to go out on the town with her friends. She is all dressed up and has put on make-up. Her mother knows about this because she is checking Lena's profile on Facebook. The mother does not like the clothes Lena has put on. She thinks that her daughter shows too much of her body and that she spends too much time and effort on looking good.

When Lena goes out, her mother does not want to make her angry by asking lots of questions about who she is going to be with, where they are going and when she will be back home. Instead, she continues to check Lena's Facebook profile throughout the evening. At first, she looks at photos from a nightclub. In these photos, Lena is drinking shots and her mother starts worrying about a boy who pays her daughter a lot of attention.

After the nightclub, Lena posts photos from the inside of a taxi. In these photos, she looks happy, and this reminds her mother of how Lena was happy and relaxed about her looks when she was a little girl. Lena and her friends end up in a flat. The mother observes that the boy is still watching Lena, and she wants to find out who he is. She thinks she has seen him somewhere before.

The next photos tell Lena's mother that Lena and her friends are back out on the street. One of her friends is crying and this makes Lena's mother even more worried. The following picture is of Lena and her friend in the back of a car. They are smiling, but Lena's mother does not think their smiles look natural, and this makes her scared. Her fear gets even worse when a photo of the boy turns up. He is in the car with Lena and her friend, and Lena's mother is afraid that the girls have been forced into the car. This makes Lena's mother so worried that she starts thinking about calling the police.

Suddenly she hears someone at the door, and she hears Lena talk to someone: "Thanks Darren, I hope Georgia is OK". Georgia is one of Lena's best friends. When Lena comes in, her mother asks her how the night was. Lena tells her that it was a good night, but that Georgia threw up and that Georgia's brother drove them home. This makes Lena's mother relax, but in her mind, she knows that she will feel the same kind of worry every time Lena goes out on the town.

Mother and daughter