SPF: Wildfire of Hysteria

This post is for Sunday Photo Fiction, a challenge that asks you to write a story of around 200 words inspired by the photo prompt below.

Photo prompt – © All Forbes

Wildfire of Hysteria

Mira slid through the shadows, each movement calculated to remain unseen. The inn was silent in the pre-dawn light but early risers might already be watching. Unfortunately, she couldn’t wait for a better opportunity.

She had to get the skull back.

Her preparations had been almost complete when the innkeeper’s boy found the decorated skull on the edge of the village. Obviously intrigued, the dratted boy had taken it home to his mother. She’d promptly shown everyone in the village.

Hysteria spread like wildfire.

Mira had kept her head down but she knew fingers would soon begin pointing. It was inevitable. She just had to complete the ritual, then she could leave.

Despite her taut nerves, reclaiming the skull was simple. She breathed a sigh of relief as she turned to leave.

“Ma Mira?” a young voice peeped. “What’re you doin’ here?”

Mira froze, her heart sinking. Then she fled.

As the mob dragged her out of her cottage, she tried to warn them. Their angry shouts drowned her out. As flames licked her ankles she told them about her sacred task. No one listened.

As consciousness fled, she saw the darkness laughing, no barriers to hold it back.

Word Count: 200

To read the other entries click the little blue frog.



27 thoughts on “SPF: Wildfire of Hysteria

    1. Thanks for the feedback, Sue. As usual I had to cut a lot out of this (the original was over 300 words) and I think some of the emotional connection to Mira was probably lost in the editing. I had to leave a lot regarding the stakes she was playing for purely to the reader’s own imagination. I’ll keep your comments in mind when I come to reworking it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  1. spooky nice! i am intrigued about what she was saving the village / people from? wonder if there was one single person who listened to her above the shouts and the flames? good story.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’ve actually had a few ideas tickling at my imagination over the last few days regarding this and several other flashes I’ve written recently – they may well end up being melded together to create a much longer story. Or maybe even a full novel! I’m glad you enjoyed it. 🙂 Thanks for visiting.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. thats sounds amazing, that your little side stories can merge into a larger one, indeed your mind is awesome to come up with the ideas and story lines, i would read them all, like your build up of suspense and then leaving us in limbo for the next part.


  2. So sad that the one person that could help them was destroyed before given a chance to explain her actions. Now, they will pay heavily for their hasty decision. Great emotional story. I could easily picture her being dragged out against her will and put to death while desperately trying to get them to listen to her.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Jessie. Sometimes fear and lack of understanding drive people to act without listening to the other side’s point of view, not realising they’re actually just making things worse. I’m very glad you enjoyed it. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

Comments are closed.