The Pourne Identity
Secret agent extraordinaire Jacob Pourne awoke at night on a beach. His clothes were soaked in cold water. The sea salt he'd swallowed burned the back of his throat and the gritty sand was stale in his mouth. But the weight pushing down on his chest was the worst, squeezing the air out of him. It felt like someone was stepping on him. Pourne twisted his body and threw the weight off of him.
"What the-" someone yelled, and then Pourne heard a thud in the sand. He rose and looked around. It was dark, but the sun was rising over the water on the horizon. Below him, he saw a middle aged man on the sand, balding, beer belly, heavy five o'clock shadow. Obviously a Greek. The Greek got to his feet and dusted himself off.
"Who are you?" the Greek asked.
"I..." Pourne couldn't remember his name. He couldn't remember anything except for waking up on the beach. "I can't remember who I am..."
Slap! The Greek slapped him across the face, hard.
"Can't remember who you are?" The Greek said. "What's the matter with you? You some kind of moron? Eh? You stupid or something? Now get back to work."
"I don't remember working for you-"
"Don't remember... 'Course you don't remember working! Who wants to remember that? Now get back to work!"
The Greek shoved a piece of well worn sandpaper into Pourne's hands and pointed to a small wooden boat on the beach with half its paint sanded off. Grudgingly, Pourne got to work, while the Greek sat in a beach chair and cracked open a beer.
Author Notes: "The Pourne Identity" is part of "Fiction Fix," a collection of 46 short, funny stories, plus 196 bonus micro fiction budget stories, available at http://www.fiction-fix.com.