Arthur Overcomes The Fear Of Books, (short fiction)

Arthur overcame his fear of books and heights.
Arthur overcame his fear of books and heights by facing them.

Daily Prompt: Fear Factor

People are afraid of all kinds of things: spiders, the dark, or being enclosed in small spaces. Tell us about your greatest fear — rational or irrational.

Arthur had been under the care of a psychologist, Dr. Benjamin Gordon for five years. Arthur was afraid of everything; people, bugs, dogs, cats, water, moving vehicles, and so on but his greatest fears were heights and flying.

He could not even watch a program or movie that had a scene inside an airplane.

He lived a tortured existence.

Under the care of Dr. Gordon Arthur was now enrolled at a local college. Dr. Gordon was able to treat his fear of books. Dr. Gordon told him that as long as he had books that they would help him overcome his fears. And it seemed to work. Everyplace Arthur went he carried his text books in his backpack. He visited parks, coffee shops, and was using public transportation rather than walking. He was now going to parks where people often brought their pets.

His progress was remarkable. Dr. Gordon was even preparing a paper on Arthur’s progress and was involved in a serious conversation with a publisher to write a book about his methods of overcoming fears and using Arthur’s story as the premise.

The day arrived for the culmination of Dr. Gordon’s work with Arthur. Arthur was about to parachute from a plane.

Dr. Gordon was an experienced parachutist and testified to Arthur that parachuting was essential to overcome many of his own phobias.

“If you do this one single act there is nothing for you to ever fear again. You will be a free man,” Dr. Gordon told Arthur sitting next to him on the small plane as it ascended.

Arthur was quite nervous. He patted his books in the backpack and smiled nervously at Dr. Gordon for assurance and courage.

The plane climbed for a few minutes. Arthur’s mouth was dry. Dr. Gordon continually assured him about the safety of parachuting and having confidence in his equipment and above all himself. “It’s safer than walking down a flight of stairs,” Dr. Gordon assured.

“We’re at four thousand feet,” the pilot said through the cockpit door. “Anytime you’re ready.”

“I can’t do this,” Arthur said.

“Sure you can,” Dr. Gordon said. “You’ve come too far to turn back now. You can do it!”

“I have to do it without thinking about it,” Arthur said. “Just go automatically through the motions as if I’ve done it all my life. It’s all second nature. No fear because I’ve done it before. Right Dr. Gordon? Just the way you told me.”

“That’s the spirit,” Dr. Gordon said. “You’ve got it!”

As Dr. Gordon moved forward to the cockpit to make certain of the drop zone Arthur quickly suited-up for the jump.

Dr. Gordon returned to find Arthur standing at the door of the plane with both hands firmly gripping the sides. At last he was about to face and overcome his fears.

Arthur looked at the miniature faraway world below and gulped.

“Do it Arthur!” Dr. Gordon said. “Free yourself.”

Arthur had a fearful smile. “Give me a nudge.”

“Just count to five and pull,“ Dr. Gordon said.

Arthur grabbed for his ripcord. It was the most freighting look ever seen on a man’s face. It was twisted in fear and doubt. Arthur tried to take a breath.

Dr. Gordon shoved Arthur.

Arthur tumbled from the plane. Dr. Gordon smiled and mumbled, “You have done it lad, you have done it.”

Dr. Gordon was pleased. He looked over at the Arthur’s empty seat and smiled. “He even did it without taking his books with him, such progress.” Dr. Gordon’s eyes widened. “That’s his parachute! He strapped on his backpack full of books!”

Dr. Gordon sat. He thought, ‘The books were always a crutch. I wonder if they helped this time? I see now why he had a fear of books; they are of little use when falling from a plane.’

Bloggers who live in fear:

  1. Spinning a Web of Words | In Harmony
  2. Courage | The Magic Black Book
  3. DP : Irrational Fear | Experimental Fiction
  4. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Everyday Adventures
  5. It was November, and I was afraid | Butterfly Mind
  6. Fanning the Flames of Fear | Spirit Lights The Way
  7. Emotional Baggage | Kate Murray
  8. My.Vivid.Visions | Daily Prompt: Fear Factor
  9. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Under the Monkey Tree
  10. 227. Fear Factor | Barely Right of Center
  11. Arthur Overcomes The Fear Of Books, (short fiction) | The Jittery Goat
  12. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Insanitree
  13. Fear Factor: A litany of phobias | James Clegg
  14. Courage | Momma Said There’d Be Days Like This
  15. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Finding Life
  16. I ain’t afraid of no ghosts…or whatever the line is from “Ghostbusters” | thoughtsofrkh
  17. theferkel | My Irrational Fear of Spiders
  18. ermahgerhd | Darkness
  19. Going through Childbirth | A mom’s blog
  20. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | On My Front Porch
  21. Rob’s Surf Report
  22. Fear | The Nameless One
  23. Fear | victor’s mind
  24. Not being loved | alienorajt
  25. MONSTER MYTHS – not exactly bedtime stories | Historiefortelling
  26. DP: Courage and Facing Fears | 3 Nish on a Journey
  27. Fear Factor | Braised Pork on Rice
  28. Conception of acceptation | Veni, vici, vidi
  29. I Still Walk Miles… | Retrofocus
  31. HIGH HOPES | seifsalamakarem
  32. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Awl and Scribe
  33. Tough Mudder and My Glass Case of Emotion | Lori’s Life and Other Stuff
  34. Daily Prompt : Fear Factor | Scary Movie Ghosts | LoudThoughtsVoicedOut
  35. Fear | CombatBabe
  36. An Irrational Fear | Hey there, I’m Jimin.
  37. Phobophobia | Processing the life
  38. My Other Blog | Daily Prompt: Fear Factor
  39. Fear: Good or Bad? | meanderedwanderings
  40. Just Sayin’
  41. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Basically Beyond Basic
  42. Open Hearts… | Haiku By Ku
  43. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Chronicles of an Anglo Swiss
  44. Afraid of death | Life is great
  45. Stagecraft | vic briggs
  46. Daily Prompt: Fear | Bowl of Rice
  47. My Not so Unique Fear | TechnoTom
  48. Must not cry, must not cry, must not freaking cry!! | Random Encounters of an Inquisitive Mind
  49. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | 20 Lines A Day
  50. It takes courage… | Words ‘n Pics
  51. Be the Light | Eyes to Heart
  52. The Species of the Two-Legged Beast | Lipstick and Lithium
  53. Jangan takut untuk takut | The Frozen Tears
  54. Courage | Flowers and Breezes
  55. Daily Prompt: Arachnawhoha | One Starving Activist
  56. Fear Factor. | ♡ self destruction ♡
  57. FEAR – Enemies and Other Mean People | Sisters of Christ
  58. Daily Prompt: Courage-Riddle Me This | UP! With Jesus
  59. My Apple is Poisoned | An Upturned Soul
  60. A LIVING DEATH | Emotional Fitness
  61. More Food for Thought on Spiders… | Once There Was a Penguin
  62. Behind Closed Doors | Blue Loft
  63. Cottage-ing Gone Wrong | carellyn
  64. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | SIM | ANTICS
  65. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Poetry
  66. She often was afraid | tjbarkerseattle
  67. Fear Factor: Courage – A Festival of Lights | Khana’s Web
  68. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | A chain of thoughts…
  69. Daily Prompt: Sugar’s Taking The Challenge ..Post 25..Courage | heysugarsugar
  70. A Letter to Santa – Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Dick-ta-tion
  71. Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | James’s Journal


  1. […] Factor Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Under the Monkey Tree 227. Fear Factor | Barely Right of Center Arthur Overcomes The Fear Of Books, (short fiction) | The Jittery Goat Daily Prompt: Fear Factor | Insanitree Fear Factor: A litany of phobias | James Clegg Courage | […]

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