Flash Fiction Friday – By Fire

It’s been a little bit since I wrote flash fic. This one is based on a prompt I came up with a while ago and stuck in a jar. Hope you like it!

By Fire

It wasn’t a very good haul. Good enough to get by, sure, but not good enough to buy herself a week of tending to the vegetable plot out back and finally reupholstering the old dingy arm chair. No, she’d be back out tomorrow, scavenging, dragging home another bucket full of detritus from the delta, where the things discarded by those inside the Dome washed out into the world of those who had been left behind.

She reached into the bucket and scoped out the last handful of stuff. Gravel and grime mostly, stuff she’d use to make sandbags to dam up the garden against the flooding of the brook in the spring. She wished she didn’t have to spend her precious time dragging dirt back home, but trying to dig through for the valuables out in the open just wasn’t worth the risk.

Brushing the gravel off into the tub she was using to collect it, Fay took a closer look at the one thing left in her palm. Dark, dirty grey and uneven, it was shaped almost like a kidney, though she didn’t know anything that had kidneys that size and color. It was hard, too, like rock, but there was no luster or sparkle to make her think it was worth anything. She considered it for a moment, and then did what she always did with the few things she couldn’t find a use for—she threw it into the fireplace.

Stretching her back until it she heard a satisfying series of cracks, she sat down and watched the flames lick the strange lump. Its surface was having an odd reaction to the heat, or maybe the combustion. It fizzled, popped and finally cracked. Fay leaned closer, curious to see what else would happen. She liked how things acted in the fire, how they warped and split, how they changed color and form, how liquid spilled forth and bubbled. She wondered what this one would do.

Something moved, and Fay squinted against the flames. There was no way she’d just seen what she thought she just seen. But there it was again. A movement, and then something inched toward her out of the fire. Fay stared, slack-jawed. Wrinkled, fork-tongued and wreathed in flame, the drakeling peered right back up at her.

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