Three Longer Flash Fiction Stories From the Beach
The Admirable Heather Polk
Heather Polk looked at the peculiar map in her hands and felt happy.
She walked over to the window and reflected on her grand city. She had always loved the derelict Delphi with it’s long green parks. It was a place that boosted her tendency to be happy.
Then she noticed something in the distance or someone. It was a lone figure on a horse. It was Geor, one of the lesser gods with tall eyebrows and long fingers tipped in piercing nails.
Heather gulped. “Oh crap…he knows…” She glanced at her own reflection. She was of admirable appearance, not too tall, red hair, green eyes, a wine drinker, with a vast array of magic. Her friends, those she called friends, saw her as loyal and helpful. Once, she even offered a dragon a new home.
But not even an admirable person who had once relocated a dragon, was prepared to deal with a lesser god.
The sun climbed into the sky, but Heather did feel any more comfortable.
As Heather stepped outside she noticed Geor had moved close enough she could see the chilling smile on his face. Geor grinned with the affection of a zombie. “I know you have it.“ He said. “I want the map with the location of the New Lander Jewel.”
Heather glanced back at her house. She had left the map sitting on her desk. She knew If a lesser god wanted it, the map was more important than she realized. Heather looked back at Geor, even more determined to hold onto the map. Her only recourse was to feign ignorance, “Geor, to which map do you refer?”
They looked at each other with distrust in their eyes, like two vultures circling a fresh road kill.
Heather regarded Geor, “So you may as well be on your way.”
Geor’s eyes turned a brilliant red, “Do you think I trust your word...mage?” The last word sounded more like a hiss.
Heather knew there was only one thing left to do. Beat a hasty retreat to her house, grab the map and then seek safety elsewhere.
“Sorry,” she said and vanished. She reappeared in the house. Rushing to her desk she grabbed the map from the desk. She glanced at the window to see Geor lifting his hands. Lightning danced on his fingertips. She started the spell to teleport away when the house exploded around her. The house and Heather were both gone.
The Desert Cave
I once sat on a cactus. Not on purpose but by mistake. Now my backside is hurting but my pride even more.
What does that have to do with anything? Nothing really. I just brought it up because I’m out here in the desert surrounded by cacti, with an old prospector’s map looking for gold.
So far nothing has turned up. I’m getting a little tired sleeping on the ground. Walking all these trails...wait. What is that up ahead? It’s a cave. There’s no cave on my map. I’ve got to check it out. I hiked the last fifty feet to the cave entrance. The darkness inside the cave swallowed the little bit of light filtering in the entrance.
“Hello is anybody in there?” I yelled into the entrance.
The heat must be getting to me. I’m hollering into an obviously empty cave. I guess the only way to find out what’s inside is to go in. First, I sent my coordinates back to the base and let hem know if they don’t hear from me to send help.
I lit my camping lantern and ventured deeper into the cavern. Other than a few cave paintings here and there I didn’t see anything out of the ordinary. This cave looks like it was going to be a total waste of time. I started to turn and head back to the cave opening where something caught my attention. I turned and headed towards the object. On the floor of the cave was a map just lime the one I held in my hand.
“What the…” The world went black.
I awoke to find myself in a familiar bedroom...my own. How did I get here? I don’t know.
“Good morning dear…”
I turned to see my wife standing in the doorway watching me. A smiled played across her face.
“You sleeping in today are you?” she said.
I shouldn’t be here. I can’t be here.
My wife tilted her head. She shouldn’t be here. She died two years ago in a car crash. I tried to shake the cobwebs from my head, The back of my head hurt.
“You bumped your head pretty hard.” My dead wife or not dead wife said. I wasn’t sure at this time.”The doctor said you have a slight concussion but you will be okay.”
I rolled my legs over the side of the bed and dropped my feet to he floor, I still had my hiking boots on. I looked down at my attire. I also still had on my hiking gear. This was getting weirder and weirder
My wife came over and gave me a kiss. “Good morning. Would you like some breakfast.“ Almost every part of me screamed get out of here. I couldn’t. The thought of spending a few seconds or minutes with my wife cancelled out all my feelings.of being in the proverbial Twilight Zone. I got up and followed my wife out of the room.
In another place a man wearing hiking gears walks out of a lonely cave in the dessert. He blinks at the bright sunlight and then threw on some shades and heads off into the desert to begin his new life.
The Spotty Dog
He walked over to the window and glanced at the woman sitting behind the desk. He had always hated the noisy animal shelter with its anxious, scared inhabitants. It was a place that discouraged his tendency to feel fuzzy.
When he’d entered the shelter a few moments ago he saw a dog in the distance, or rather an oddly spotted dog. It was the mixture of several types of dogs he was sure. He or she was a light brown with dark brown spots and long floppy ears.
Toby gulped. He glanced at his own reflection in the glass. He was an animal loving, single guy. Girls saw him as the sweet brotherly type. Once, he had even jumped into a river and saved a kitten who was struggling to get to shore. It had cost him quite a few scratches but it was worth the risk.
But he still was not even sure if he was the right person to own a pet. He knew pets were a great responsibility. They consumed a lot of your time and your budget but he was sure they were worth the risk.
The dog scratched at its cage as if knowing what was to come, making Toby delighted.
As Toby stood at the window the lady looked up at him., he could see the eggy smile on her face.
“Can I help you?”
"I am here because I want to adopt a dog," Toby said, in a friendly tone.
She smiled even harder as she got up from the desk. She walked over to the wall and took down some keys.. "Would you like to look around or do you have a dog in mind. "
Toby looked back towards the dog in the cage, even more delighted and smiling. "No, I have a dog in mind. I was here a couple days ago and fell in love with the dog.”
“Ok, then,” Said the lady. The look on her face was one of satisfaction knowing another animal was getting adopted.
Toby and the woman went down the aisle to the cage where the spotty dog sat. The dog looked up at him and wagged its tail.
They two looked at each other with surprised feelings, like two long lost friends being reunited after years of separation.
The woman took the keys, removed the padlock and handed the dog to Toby. “Do you have some supplies for the dog?”
Toby regarded the woman for a few seconds. He balanced the dog in his arms.. "Um, yes.” He answered. “I have a leash and food in my car.”.
"Okay," pondered the woman.”Let’s go fill out the paperwork and you can be on your way.”
"Please?" Toby said. After several minutes paperwork done Tody left the animal shelter with his new friend.
The spotty looked afraid, but also elated, Toby thought If a dog could show either feeling in their face.
“Nice car. The dog said,”Names Max...thanks for springing me from that place. I think we’re going to be good friends.” Max lifted his paw to shake Toby’s hand.
Toby shook Max’s hand. “You talk?” He was sure when he got home he was going to need a nice glass of wine or two.
© 2020 Timothy Whitt