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.
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
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Colette O'Neill... Environmentalist, Author, Publisher, Photographer. Creator of Goddess Permaculture.
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