by Ian Rochford
There was once a man of great wealth who had been estranged from his only son for many years. Feeling the weight of advancing years, he persuaded his son to accompany him to the top of a mountain which stood on his vast estates. Looking out over the fields and vineyards which stretched to the horizon he said, “One day my son, although you have disobeyed and disappointed me often, all you see before you will be yours.” The son turned to his father and replied angrily, “All I ever wanted from you, Father, was your love and respect but you denied me these too often, so as far as I am concerned, I have no father!” The father, clutching his broken heart, collapsed stricken to the stony ground and died. Grinning, the son turned and began to survey all that was now indeed his.
Ian Rochford, whose full catalog is here, is an unemployed Australian screenwriter (ostensibly of comedy) who recently rediscovered the pleasures of writing short stories. He is now plundering his fading memory for all the good ideas that came and went unrecorded, which probably accounts for the maddening inconsistency of his output.