Wednesday 26 September 2018

Mid-Week Flash Challenge - Week 74

This week's picture prompt was created by Eric Frey, a French photographer. He has some really captivating work. Take a look on Art Limited, or on his account on Flickr. He calls this one 'Mirage'.

I was unsure if this story was where I wanted to go, but their voices were insistent, and I've ended up really like it. This could be part of a much bigger story. Food for thought!

The General Guidelines can be found here.

How to create a clickable link in Blogger comments can be found on lasts week's post here.

There is also a Facebook group for Mid-Week Flash, if you fancy getting the prompt there.


 “What do you think it is, Jack?”

“I don’t know, Duncan.” They eyed the strange object in the sky from their comfy spot on the beach. They liked it down here at night, it was nice and quiet.

“I don’t trust it.”

“You don’t trust anything since the invasion.” Jack laughed.

“Do you blame me? This is their type of tricky shit.”

 “True. But it’s floating up there. They came from under the ground.”

“Maybe, but I still don’t trust it.”

“It’s not moving very fast.”

“There ain’t much wind.”

“Was it here last night when you can down to the beach with Darlene?” Duncan asked.

“Nope.” Jack took a swig from his bottle. “It was just the usual plain dark sky.”

“Do you see how it shines onto the water too?”


 “How’s that happening?”

“I’ve no idea.”

“This is freaky shit. We ought to call Bert down here.”

“He don’t like being disturbed at night. He’s up early out there all day keeping those things at bay over on the North Quarter. I don’t think we should bother him.”

“But this is important, not like when we called him out for that water fish thing.”

“Whale, it was a whale – that’s what he called it.”

“Never seen nothing like it.”

“Neither had I.” Jack remembered how Bert had raged for a full hour about it, calling them names they hadn’t understood. “What was it he called us?”

“Numb skulls I think it was. Some old folk term. He loves those.”

“Yes, and nit wit or something. What do you think they mean?”

“I think they’re mean drop head, or that we’re like the Jonas brothers. But he’s wrong. We know more than they do.” Duncan threw his empty bottle out behind him onto the sand where the others were. “But this is different. He’ll want to know about this.”

Duncan got up and pulled the device out of his pocket. He fumbled the buttons. If THEY heard him there’d be in trouble – it wouldn’t be the first time they’d had to run for their lives. He heard the strange buzzing noise it made before it connected. Then there was a funny squeal and a voice.


“It’s Dunc, Bert, you gotta come and look at this.”

“Where are you?”

“The Beach.”

“Not another bloody fish.”

“No, something in the sky.”

There was a pause, then, “Okay, I’m on my way.”

Duncan and Jack resumed their drinking, opening fresh root beers. The thing was still floating there even though it had shifted over a bit.

It wasn’t long before they heard Bert’s boots clobbering on the board walk down to the sand.

“Well I’ll be damned!”

His exclamation made them turn to him.

“What is it Bert, some kind of strange hocus pocus? What did the invaders cook up this time?” Duncan’s mouth had fallen open in anticipation.

“It’s a cloud.”

“A what?” The boys spoke in unison turning back, goggling at the object.

“We ain’t seen one of those in decades, not since before the war.”

“What does it mean?” Jack didn’t take his eyes off it.

“It’s means things are coming back, cycles are returning. This is a good omen.”

“But should it glow like that, Bert?” Duncan was sure it was wrong.

Bert’s face fell. “Only if there was moon light on it.”

“Moonlert? What’s that?” Jack asked.

“Moon light. There used to be a big planet up there that the sun used to reflect off at night. We called it the moon and the reflecting light moonlight. ‘twas pretty. But the invaders killed that too. And the cycles stopped, cycles which created clouds – what that thing there is. But that glowing ain’t right.”

“Knew it!” Duncan grinned at Jack, whose eyes were still on Bert.

“That glow means radiation. That means it’s picking it up from over Eastwards where the worst of the bombs were.”

“Those nuclear ones, Bert?” Jack knew things too.

“Yep, those ones, Jack. They carry mean stuff in them that caused all that death after the explosions were long over. And if clouds start up again they’re gonna start carrying that stuff around.”

“What should we do, Bert?” Duncan was standing now, ready for action. Jack joined him.

“Nothing we can do, Dunc. But I need to go tell the elders. This is gonna change things.”

As Bert hurried away, Duncan and Jack looked at each other, eyes wide and followed Bert. 


  1. A future unfortunate reality perhaps... Can't imagine our Planet Earth without our Moon.

    1. Yes, I can't imagine it either, and I think more would change than cycles maybe. But it's a writer's playground. I liked your little piece too.