Flash Literature, Poetry, Art and Photography!


Hot Pink




Jeremy Trimble







Alyssa glowed, she burned, this bright burst of evanescent pink against the gray and beige all around her, linoleum floors, desktops, khaki, and pale t-shirts. That was the first time he noticed her, one of his students sitting in the third row, second desk back. Her stomach, sides, back, and breasts all covered in that hot pink, little lines in the fabric begging him to find out what Alyssa would feel like against his palms, fingertips, his lips against hers.


And when he got caught the department chair convened the hiring committee to determine his future. He sat at one end of the faux oak, the same place they’d interviewed him a year before. The five English professors looked at the guy who’d been their student, the guy they’d molded into adjunct faculty. Lips firm and tight, they kept their fingers wrapped around their pens, glaring at him. And he stared back, looking back at Alyssa.


It was physical and visual, the heat and itch, warmth of touch. She looked nervous and hopeful, getting her lower lip to quiver a little when she asked if there was anything she could do about her grade. Her fingers crawling up his leg, he could’ve pulled away and that would’ve been a mistake. Then they were kissing, then his hand was at the small of her back, beneath her shirt, under that pink that was brighter and darker than anything he’ll imagine.


Did you trade sex for grades? No, of course not. There might’ve been grading irregularities, and for that I’m really sorry, but I’m not an accountant. A repentant pause, a guilty glance down at the table. Look, I overextended myself. I didn’t keep perfect records. There probably are inaccuracies, but I don’t make enough not to teach six classes. I have to eat. Then he looks at them and demands a challenge: tell me I don’t deserve food. But I didn’t do anything inappropriate, not with her or anyone else.


There’s another stretch where they look at one another, shuffling papers as they try to make him feel guilty, but English teachers aren’t paid enough for moral outrage. So he’d get another job even if he couldn’t get another letter of recommendation. But he’s thinking about the first time his fingers touched the clasp of her bra, the first time she held up her arms and he slid that pink, clingy tank top from her shoulders.




JEREMY TRIMBLE is a graduate student at Sacramento State University. He loves creative writing, fantasy and romance in particular. Part editor, part teacher, and part philosopher, he’s all writer. " I write because I like exploring the world through a blinking cursor."




"Hot Pink was inspired by my frustration with how little college instructors are paid. Many college instructors cannot find full time work, so they must work multiple part-time positions in the hopes of cobbling together a full time job. Considering that they are paid so little, ethics suddenly become worthless. Sleeping with a student just doesn't look that bad. The idea of losing your job doesn't mean very much if you're not paid enough to survive in the first place."


JEREMY can be reached at