Here is a new flash fiction offering of mine. It is for the blog Write on Wendy where every week she gives a topic to write a 500 word fictional story on. I continue to find a 500 word challenge extremely difficult. Fitting an entire concept into only 500 words requires a lot of editing for me. This story came in at 600 plus before I edited it to 499 words.
Anyway, this week’s writing prompt is: to write a story that takes place underwater and a character ends up feeling refreshed in some way. Let me just say I put my usual spin on such a fun topic. I hope you enjoy.
It’s such a beautiful day up there. No clouds to hinder the sun’s light as it illuminates the white paisley pattern in the pool. Cobalt blue lining helps the elegant design stand out underwater. However, the truckloads of chlorine cause my eyes to burn. Burning eyes means my aim might not be as true as usual.
I fire anyway.
The Glock 17 fires perfectly. Luckily, Mr. Bodyguard is only a few feet away. Water turns a gunfight into a crap shoot with the house having loaded dice. Odds say you won’t win.
The bullet streaks through the clear water impossibly slow. It cuts a swath through the chlorine infused pool water as it races towards the behemoth. His eyes widen with that satisfying look of shock and fear.
Boxcars. Shooter wins.
I don’t have time to watch him die. I’ve always wondered how long it takes a body to become buoyant and pop to the surface like a bobber with a small crappie on the line. Can’t answer that question for two reasons. The burning lungs that are quickly fighting for dominance over the stinging eyes. Secondly, Mr. Bodyguard’s friend Mr. Neanderthal just cracked two of my ribs.
“Jack, you are getting old,” I think.
I guess he hoped to force the few remaining gulps of air from my lungs. It hurts like hell but with age comes wisdom, and I have that in spades.
I pivot underwater to face the cave man. Like firing, moving operates under different physics. Everything is sluggish, slow motion. He sees me turn and I see the sun reflect off the blade in his hand. Like a lighthouse in a storm it beckons me closer. To safety. Safety is the beautiful day up above, not down here with the sharks.
After hundreds of fights I know to watch his shoulders. They snitch on him. Shoulders tell me the knife is the killing blow.
I move quicker using my underwater pirouette to my advantage and strike his wrist. The knife slowly falls towards the blue bottom.
Lungs are about to burst. Mr. Neanderthal grabs after the falling knife but it affords me the chance to end this. Glock inches from the back of his head and the water suddenly is tainted with a crimson tint. He continues to limply fall after the knife he wanted.
Sun is still shining. Looks better than ever as I brace my feet against the bottom to force myself skyward.
Mr. Bodyguard didn’t die. His arms wrap around my stomach to underwater wrestle with me. I plan a kick to his foot but I see I have been outmatched. He doesn’t want to wrestle. He wants to save me from choking. His balled fists drive deep into my abdomen, inward and upward. A move to save lives. It forces lodged objects from the throat. The only thing lodged in my throat is oxygen, which bubbles out instantly.
It’s a beautiful day out.
Seven. Shooter loses. House wins.