Both Sides of the Story - the gym weights

The Gym (London 1993): "Come on, Winnie, push." Winston arched his back and strained against the bar. "Push!" The muscles in Winston's arms and chest burned. He closed his eyes, let out a primal roar and fully extended his arms. The weights rattled for a moment before Winston steadied the bar. "Yes!"

A Council Flat (England 1993): The sound of the twins fighting in the bedroom filled the flat. Their screams drowned out the drone of sport on the TV and the sizzle and bubble of dinner on the kitchen cooktop. "For Christ's sake, Ruth," Stu bellowed over the TV, "shut those bloody kids up, will you!"

Bosnia and Herzegovina (1993): The explosives devastated the peace of the valley. Tibor had covered his ears, but the thudding explosion set off the bells in his head again. He dropped his hands as dust and grit rained down on him and his men. When the dust cleared, it revealed the shattered farmhouse.

Westminster (England 1993): "Madam Speaker, I —" Baxter groaned and lifted his pen. He stuck the end in his mouth and sucked on it, searching for a better opening line. He crossed out the first words and started again. "Madam Speaker, the —" His pen froze again. "Damn it, why won't the words flow?"

"And now the piece de resistance," the old Colonel announced, leading his guest into a sunlit garden. "What do you think?" he enquired, waving his walking stick at the garden's centrepiece. Two life-size marble figures stood face to face, their hands caressing each other, their lips fused in a kiss.

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