National Flash Fiction Day: Wicked

Today is National Flash Fiction Day 2012 and I missed getting involved with their FlashFlood (must do better!)  but wanted to offer my own nod to the day. I went back to my Five Sentence Fiction and completed the story…

So for those of you who wanted to know if the little girl beneath the camellia was safe…read on:

Photograph from:

Flash Fiction: 
Anna stared out of the window, with hands tightly clasped, and watched her little sister hurriedly push herself beneath the camellia. She knew the terror that filled Lottie’s trembling heart because the same bile rose in her own throat, and nausea washed over her as the back door slammed, and Lottie’s soft-pink shoes still remained peeping out from beneath the shrub’s protective canopy. Anna raised a useless warning hand as his heavy brogues made their way up the path. She could barely breathe, but Lottie’s Mary Janes disappeared beneath the waxy leaves.
     Her hands uncurled as he strode past the budding camellia, and she held her breath as he paused by the small, stone wall. He rested his hand and wiped his forehead. Anna smiled; a tiny, knowing curve of her lips. He didn’t look good.
He moved a step further and Anna noted his lethargy, the annoyance in his eyes as he glanced across the garden, and the way he clutched his abdomen after he wiped the sweat from his brow. Heavy drops of rain began to fall and her smile grew. He called and her little sister’s name rang out in the still evening air, a mixture of cajoling and pleading and Anna’s smile slid from her face.
But the camellia hid its treasure well.
Anna watched him move and begin searching behind the potting shed, and up towards the rhododendrons. Above him the laburnum, its golden racemes now faded and ugly, rippled in the slight breeze. He moaned, and the menacing sound carried through her closed window. She clenched her fists, it was fitting that he now gripped his stomach and collapsed beneath the tree.
She couldn’t help the surge of triumph and recalled the moment a few weeks ago when he’d asked what she was putting in his hot chocolate. “Vanilla,” she’d answered quickly and easily, “you’ll like it.” And she continued pounding away at the seed pods with the mortar and pestle. Vanilla essence flavoured his drink…and he liked it.
He was now retching and shaking like a dog, spittle hanging from his pale lips, and Anna watched as he buckled, and sank into the long grass behind the huge rhododendrons and beneath the laburnum’s veil of blackened pods.    
Both she and Lottie would sleep safe in their beds tonight. 

5 thoughts on “National Flash Fiction Day: Wicked

  1. Ang

    Holy moley! I was on edge the whole time. I love how beautiful your writing is, each sentence flowing into the next. The imagery is breath-taking, I can see it all in my minds eye. There is a sense of foreboding and yet innocence. And Anna is a great character, both sympathetic and sinister. Trying to protect her sister in the most heinous way. Fantastic flash fiction, my friend! An amazing addition to this day!

  2. Sandra Crook

    I remember this from 5SF and it really stuck in my mind. I've read so many since then, it shows what a great story-line you have here. I was almost holding my breath for a while there. Terrific.

  3. Lisa Shambrook

    Thanks for you comments, all much appreciated! Sandra, I'm so glad you remembered the original FSF…funny how some of them grab you and make you want to write more!


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