So much for lightening the mood up. I swear it wasn’t supposed to end up in this way (I wanted something more lighthearted), but I honestly had this idea of post-apocalyptic gangs vying for territory in my head, that I kept writing and ended up with this:
It was on the eve of the anniversary and Brent was late.
“Is he coming?” the man asked. He was ragged, his clothing barely hanging onto his frail frame. His thick grey beard gave him a wild appearance. His eyes were deranged and burning into mine.
“He should be.” That was all I could say in response. At this point, I wasn’t sure about anything. The world had gone to hell so many years ago. We were all just struggling to make it any way that we could. I leaned against the decrepit brick wall with my hands in my pockets to help me keep warm. My parka was not nearly as thick as it could be against the strengthening autumn wind. My left hand also kept a grip on the small .22 caliber pistol in my left coat pocket just in case the old man got tired of waiting and attempted something dangerous. Atomic junkies were known to have bipolar episodes periodically.
The crunch of snow several feet behind me and to my left warned of someone approaching. But I knew who it was before the pale light of the beige moon above revealed him.
“Sorry gentleman. Had to make another impromptu drop on my way here.” Brent always sounded cool, calm, and collected, even in the most appalling of situations. He flashed me a look as he passed. Something had happened. He would tell me later.
The old man’s eyes grew wide, the feeling of withdrawal deep in the wrinkles of his face. His mouth was slightly ajar, the excitement of another high in his mind. He was too happy to speak and simply put his hand forward with the money.
“You’re too kind sir.” Brent handed him the jar of Atomic and took the money in the same go. The man didn’t wait and took off running, his ragged legs carrying him back off into the darkness of the alleyways. His addiction would increase. So would his withdrawal after the next high. He would be dead in days. Following his exit, Brent turned back to me. “We have a problem Saul,” he said, his mood turning serious. “New players in town encroaching on our territory.”
Maybe, instead of putting restrictions on the type of material I write, I’ll simply just go where my creative interests lead me at the time. I already stumbled upon a pretty cool prompt that I may try to attempt for next week.
We’ll see. Until next time!
Explanation of the flash fiction challenge is HERE
*Credit for the featured image comes from Arthur’s Pub at: http://www.arthurspub.ie/bluesnjazz/flash-fiction-competition/
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