A Lie

by Robert Long

He stands at the lectern. His responses, meticulously rehearsed, are ready to go. There is a shuffling of paper in the light and a murmuring from the darkness as his inquisitor prepares to ask and his audience gets ready to listen. At the announcement of his name cameras flash and near blind him. He has convinced himself of what they want to hear, the hidden code which will make them cross the box next to his name, and so he knows something they try not to: that this is a recital. He straightens the knot of his tie and prepares to speak the truth.


Robert Long lives in the outer reaches of London, England. He works for the British Government, but he’d prefer it if you didn’t tell anyone.