Wednesday 8 April 2020

Mid-Week Flash Challenge - Week 152

This week's picture prompt is from Polish artist Zdzislaw Beksinski. He was known for his dystopian and surreal artwork. This one just struck me more than any of his other art but you should check it out. 

I tried a different take on this one, and quite like what came out. Channeling the kids in Mad Max Thunderdome.

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.

From the Deep

Obsey moved a little closer and stopped to see if it would move away. It didn’t.

They’d watched it from the dunes. It had come in on the water, but hadn’t moved like the other sea life. This was hard and inflexible. When it had washed up, everyone had waited. After two sun cycles a team had been put together to investigate further.

There were whispers that it belonged to the dangerous ages. One of the old timers had made a sound like the giant black birds that were always circling and trying to take their food. He’d said it was the sound you made when you called this thing.

It’s square eyes were hollow, yet watchful. Obsey couldn’t see a mouth. Maybe it was underneath. He wondered at the openings around the sides. Rilet said it might be a shell; the creature that had lived inside long dead. Obsey hoped she was right. The idea frightened him. He led the fishing teams out into the water. He’d never come across anything this big, and hoped never to.

They’d sighted sea animals from the lookout at the top of the old pole, but they’d moved in wiggly ways and flipped their tails and never come into shore. Obsey had even dreamed of catching something that big; it would feed their cluster for a month or more. But this thing was different. It didn’t move right. It didn’t sound right. It was all kinds of wrong, as Mamon used to say.

Obsey looked back at the team, huddled in among the low dunes, all eyes were on him. He decided to brave it and rush the thing, letting out a yell as he did, spear overhead, ready for the kill. But it remained motionless.

He came to an abrupt halt next to it, only the sound of him panting and the waves crashing filled the air. He lowered his spear and poked it in the side. No movement, but it had a hard exterior, like the lookout pole. He poked it again, harder this time. Still nothing. Then he dared to put his hands on it. Rilet was right; it was just a shell.

He turned and waved to the rest of the team and they joined him in investigating it. Then after a time they gave a signal to the lookout pole and the cluster came to see it too.

The mood turned from trepidation to excitement, and they decided to carry it up back to their dwelling, where the younguns could play on it and the old timers could teach about it. 


  1. A car in a time and place it doesn't belong. Nice work, Miranda. Loved it!

  2. Heres my story for the week. Hazardous Growth Hope you like it.

  3. Obsey is quite the character! Loved the story. Great job, Miranda! Here's my humble attempt at... something ~ Into the Sea Thanks for the prompt!

  4. The Yugo: 748 Words, by Terry Brewer, @stories2121

    The odds were always against it. We were young and stupid. At least younger and stupider than we are now. The four of us, Mike, Don, Shirley, and me, worked that summer at a restaurant on a small island off the coast of Maine. There was a ferry to and from in the morning and another in late afternoon plus late ones on Friday and Sunday.

    Soon, the initial excitement of the island was gone. Soon after that it was long gone. The monotony was broken up by night-trips to the mainland. With backpacks and sleeping backs, we too the afternoon ferry to the mainland and slept on the beach. Don managed to find someone who’d sell us not-too-bad pot. We sat on the beach with the families long gone and would make a small fire from wood we found above the tide line mixed in with seaweed.

    Usually it was almost too warm to need our sleeping bags. By night, the bug biting at twilight were gone and we shared joints and memories and dreams, staring at the lapping Atlantic.
    I almost fell in love and almost lost my virginity on that beach that summer, but a cooler head prevailed and we all remained friends. Desperate for a shower after being awakened by the rising sun burning into us and threatening to set our hair ablaze, we got breakfast at the diner by the ferry slip and dozed on the ride back to the island. Jimmy, a deck hand, woke us each with a kick that sent us cursing and stumbling to our rooms above the restaurant.
    I do not know who came up with the idea, but we all agreed. I confess to that. We were in our final stretch of summer. We went to different colleges in and around Boston and each made enough after expenses—room and board was taken from our checks—for spending money that we hoped would last at least through the fall semester.

    It was our final Tuesday or Wednesday. Labor Day would be our last working day on the island and we’d move off on the day after. We finished late that night and there was a full moon. Don surprised us with some pot in our rooms. We shared joints for a while and then someone—again I do not recall who—thought of “borrowing” a Yugo. It was a famous car on the island. The owner, an erstwhile hippy who fashioned some type of jewelry from flotsam found on the beach, drove it around. He would honk and honk and wave and wave and after a while his act lost his charm. But the daytrippers loved it, and they bought pieces of his junk at a little cabin he kept by the parking lot at the ferry slip.

    He lived in a small cabin about a mile-and-a-half outside of town. It was about one, I guess, and we were high. It took us maybe forty-five minutes to cover the mile-and-a-half, but when were there, at maybe two or a little before, we found the Yugo unlocked and the keys in the ignition. We planned, I swear, to return it, but someone got the idea of seeing how it handled on the beach.

    There was a secret cove on the island. No one ventured there. We chanced it. I was in the back seat with Shirley and I think Don was driving. That would put Mike in the passenger’s seat. Anyway, we got to the beach and the Yugo proved not up to the task. Its wheels spun and spun to no avail until the damn thing clunked and became quiet. Its fuel exhausted, the four of us roared. It must have been five miles back to the village, and somehow we made it just as the sun was coming up. We made it to our rooms and rose as if nothing had happened and were at work on time. Each of us thought one of the others would slip a note about the car to the ex-hippy, but none of us did.

    Back at school, we swore never to speak of it.
    That was ten years ago. My falling in love and losing my virginity, it turned out, was only delayed by a few months. The two of us went to the island for old time’s sake. We decided to walk the five miles to the cove. We found the Yugo and promised to tell the others.

    1. This would be a great story if it wasn't written as an account or narration but as an active story. Think active tense and not passive. This could also be an outline or background of a story you are planning to tell.

      Thanks for joining - if I can help you further, or you need to go into more depth, email me or DM me on twitter. There's a lot of potential here.