• Mary Decker

ATA Flash Fiction Results 2019-05

This week's winner is none other than Mark A Morris.

Judge's comments

Mark painted a vivid picture of a wold gone wrong - I've always been a fan of the post apocalyptic stopping trip, and this did not disappoint. There are so many ways this could have gone and as always, you've left me wanting more.

And now - the story...

Not with a Bang, but with a Splat! by Mark A Morris

It was five weeks after the great flood and the waters still hadn’t begun to recede. In fact, I believed they were rising again.

Francis and I were traversing the main street on his Honda. We’d never used to do anything but walk or ride but now every day seemed like a movie adventure. His scooter was old, and its electrics were poor, and the waters often made it cough and splutter. It was all we had though, and we were better off than most. Many of us now wished we’d still got horses; they would probably have managed these conditions with ease. The town centre was busy though, just as busy as it would have been before the flood. There was an all-pervading smell of rot and sewage everywhere, but the shops were all still open, although many of them had already been picked clean.

But some things had changed. The shops had no business now – not unless you count looting as commerce. The store-keepers had been quick to shift their perishable goods to the upper floors but the waters had been the least of their worries. With no electricity, there was no security. With no alarms, the stoutest of deadbolts could be broken. There wasn’t a door that couldn’t be opened if you were determined. And as for the police? They had other priorities. The smaller towns would be on their own from now on.

So, we were both going shopping – but shopping with a difference.

I was carrying a length of pipe. Francis had his forty-eight-inch wrench. They would be enough to get us anything we needed. I was riding on the back of the scooter, holding my feet up as much as I could, knowing there was disease swimming unseen in the waters.

“You feeling confident today? You had any premonitions?” I asked.

Francis shook his head. “Just deaths and rioting. But nothing specific. I saw thousands of people being shot by troops – that’d be the city, I guess. There’s never been that many people here in the Bagmati zone. They all looked dry too. They were building fires.”

I hugged him closer, pressing myself up against his back. I was afraid, not knowing how we could rise up again from this. The world had turned to mud and our lives were growing shorter.

Congratulations, Mark! Well done. Tune in tomorrow for the next installment of: The ATA Flash Fiction contest

And don't forget, week after next is our Anniversary, and Audrey has something special planned.

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