Wednesday 8 September 2021

Mid-Week Flash Challenge - Week 216

When trying to trace this week's picture prompt, I was stunned to find it only twice online and neither credited who had created it! It's been a very long time since I haven't been able to trace an image. Should anyone know who created this piece of art, please let me know. 

No Tricky snippet this week, just a very dark tale. 

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.

painting of red tulips flowers with long green stems


She heard him enter the apartment and throw his keys on the counter.

‘Rachel, I’m home,’ he called.

She slid slowly down the back wall of the fitted wardrobe until she was sitting on the floor among the shoes. She put a hand to her mouth just in case she made a sound.

‘Rachel? Where are you?’

She could hear him moving around from room to room, looking for her.

‘Rachel, I know you’re here.’

He was persistent; he always had been. All day every day persuading her to stay with him, wanting her close, not letting her out of his sight. He was claustrophobic, just like this wardrobe, making her feel closed in and muffled.

She needed to break free. She needed to release herself from these chains. She needed to breathe again.

She heard him come into the bedroom; the sweeping motion of his feet on the carpet locating him in the room. She heard another sound, a rustling sound, as the bed creaked under his weight.

Oh god, what did he have now? What was he going to use to manipulate her now? She wasn’t sure if she could bear anymore.

She carefully stood up and felt along the clothing rail and found a metal hanger. She lifted it as gently as possible. Any sound was muffled by the clothing either side. She took off the shirt and dropped it to the floor and began to unwind the neck of the hanger, until it came apart. She pulled it apart while she braced herself and told herself she could do this. She shuffled forward to the door.

‘Rachel? Is that you? Are you in the wardrobe?’

The bed creaked again as he got up, the rustle still present with his movements. She heard him come towards the wardrobe and stand in front of it. She held her breath.

He pulled the right side open first, and then the left, using the same hand because he was holding something in his other hand.

She didn’t waste time looking to see what it was; she jabbed the pointed end of the hanger into his throat, driving it hard. He was caught off guard and tried to grab at it, but staggered back, gargling as blood sprayed out of his neck.

He dropped what was in his hand. It landed at her feet, and she looked down at the bunch of red tulips which were now getting redder as his blood soaked them.

Oh please, not more flowers. Every day there was a new bunch. Every day he was sorry for being so needy, so insecure, so desperate to be with her. She’d found it endearing at the beginning but then it had become tiresome, eventually infuriating.

He dropped down to his knees clutching at his throat, but it didn’t stop the flow of blood. Rachel sidestepped and backed out of the room, making sure he wasn’t going to get up and follow her. Then she ran to the front door, grabbing her coat and bag as she left the apartment.

At last some air!



  1. The road turned sharply into the second of a series of tight bends, the hedgerow disturbed where it would have continued if it had been straight. The grass verge was immaculate and green. There was little to be seen now, the imprints of the Suzuki’s tyres now blurred by time.

    The police officer heading the investigation had been blunt. He’d said the car’s brakes should have stopped the vehicle, that there’d been no skid marks. He’d said that Elaine had been sober, that her blood tests had been clear of all intoxicants. There’d been no other vehicles involved in the incident, the unlucky driver of the Audi who had been the first to find the wreck discovering the damaged car crouched beneath a tree that had collapsed on to it, its roots still clutching at the ground, unwilling to release its hold on its life.

    Elaine had been troubled, her sister said, unwilling to say more when we first spoke of the accident. She’d said very little then, using empty words, her statement describing a person seen from a distance.

    But who was the woman they’d found? Was she anything more than the model employee her employer spoke of, the one who always arrived on time, the one who worked late, the one who never complained?

    We were married once, a long time ago. I wonder who she’d become, before she came to an end.