Short Fiction – “The Nowhere Man”

Found this short story when flipping back through my notebooks today, and realized I had never written it up. So hope you enjoy this taste of some of my short fiction:



By Alan J. Porter

“They call me ‘The Nowhere Man.’ Actually to be strictly accurate no-one actually calls me that to my face. My real name is James Davenport, but as it turns out no-one uses that anymore either.

“I’m not sure when it started, but I guess it was at school. I was never picked for any sports team, and the teachers never called on me to answer questions. I was just there. Sitting at the back of the class, minding my own business, biding my time. It’s not that I bunked off. I was, no am, smart. Always did my work, got straight A’s, took extra credits. Then headed off to college with a full academic scholarship in hand.

“It was at college that I really noticed things starting to happen. Doors started to open for me. Literally.

“I think that the first time it happened was the day I went to see one of my professors about a paper I was working on. The note on her door said she was gone for the day, but for some reason I still reached out and put my hand on the door handle. As soon as I did, I heard the lock click open, and the door swung open.

“So, like most kids in college, I started to experiment. Just a little at first, then getting more and more adventurous. Starting with sneaking into the girls’ dorms, and then trying out a few of their locker rooms; eventually I tried the doors of the local bank after hours.

“That’s when I discovered that video cameras didn’t see me either. I could come and go anywhere I pleased and nothing would record my presence.

“I wasn’t invisible, or anything fancy like that. People could see me and interact with me, in fact they seemed to fall over themselves to get me whatever I wanted; from the best table in a swanky restaurant to…. well you get the idea. But after I left, just like the cameras, they had no recollection of me, it was if I’d never been there.

“You would think that was fantastic; and at first it was. I made a lot of money. I offered my services to various criminal overlords, but they never called back. I guess they forgot about me too. So I set my self up as a super-villain. Robbed banks, discovered secrets, blackmailed people, all that sort of stuff.

“I have more money than God now. OK perhaps more than anyone else in this city. Wonder who owns that large estate outside of town, or the largest yacht in the harbor, or who’s the mysterious owner of the local football franchise? Yep, it’s all me.

‘The perfect life you would think. But there’s one big problem with being the man that no-one remembers

“I’m lonely.

“It’s like I live in a world of my own, while the rest of you revolve around me, never touching my soul, or my heart.

“There is only so much wealth a man on his own can enjoy.

“And what’s the point in being rich and powerful if no-one knows who you are?

“So this is a final act. A message to the people of this city that James Davenport exists………”

Captain Malone clicked off the tape that had been found at the scene of this afternoon’s disaster.

“Well?” asked the assistant DA as he walked into Malone’s office.

“Nothing.” Malone shook his head. “It’s blank.” Malone paused, reconsidering his last statement. “Actually it’s just white noise. As if someone switched on the microphone, but just sat there without saying anything.”

“Any ID on the body?”

Malone shook his head for a second time, “Nope, he’s just another John Doe to us. A real nowhere man.”


“The Nowhere Man” and all associated characters and concepts are (c) Alan J. Porter – 2011

1 thought on “Short Fiction – “The Nowhere Man”

  1. Very nice! I hope you post more of your fiction work, it’s quite good. If you’re looking for critique, there are a few minor punctuation issues. Probably resolved with another proof-reading. Overall, very well done!

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