A tower in ruins. A graveyard. Floodlights and extension cords. What about this marvelous photo isn’t a story?? Once again you all showed up in full force, imaginations and spectacular writing skillz bursting all over the place. Thanks so much to regulars and newbies alike–it’s a blast having you.
**Check back Monday to see one of your stories highlighted at Flash Points.**
Judge Maggie Duncan says, This was a great exercise in my evaluative skills because there was a lot of diversity in subjects and several of the stories were just what I love reading. It’s always great fun to see what the prompt engenders, and this one was particularly prolific! I enjoy reading all the different takes on the same picture. The judging was, as always, challenging, fun, and edifying, and the stories were a joy to read. And a good time was had by all, I hope!
Now behold: your results.
The Imaginator (for “To the Death,” A very original take on the prompt); Emma M. (for “Adventure,” Good set-up; nicely done); Natalie Bowers (for “Casualties of War,” Excellent characterization; tightly written & well-executed).
Second Runner Up
David Hartley, for “St. Joseph’s.” I liked the image of a lone priest scurrying around, trying to fulfill his obligations to mother church and his parishioners before the end comes. A lot of good imagery here.
First Runner Up
Jeffrey Hollar for “Career Setbacks.” A nice glimpse into a dark future. Loved the name “Scourge.” I could just imagine how he got that name. Technically a good piece of sci-fi with a nice, almost comedic twist at the end.
And our grave-rockin’, HOME-FINDIN’
DRAGON WINNER IS….
“Pilgrimage” grabbed me from the beginning and held me throughout. Beautiful, lyrical language conveyed hopelessness and dismay then hope and joy. Great little story that left me wanting more!
Congratulations, Whitney! Here are your Winner’s Page, your eBadge (below), and your winning Tale. Please contact me asap with your email address so I can interview you for Wednesday’s “Sixty Seconds” feature.
This is it…
Their mecca, their hub, their heart. Only left—debris.
The spires that once rose meant to represent their chance at independence. The clerestories, their flight to heaven. The buttresses, their wings.
And now, as I kneel on the moss above the bones of my ancestors, I wonder: was it worth it?
Was it worth the struggle, the gore, the lives, the cut-throat politics and deeds? What my predecessors thought was an innocent crusade became their elimination.
And as I think these things—I wonder—can any crusade be clean?
They were fighting for their homes, their freedom, their families, their life, blood, and breath.
Bodies piled up in crowds—most are buried on the other side of the now-closed archway in secluded mass grave. Fighting was what they thought was right. Perhaps they knew more than I know today. Perhaps I should learn from them. Perhaps I already have.
…Because when I ask myself again, “Was it worth it?”, I see the phantoms of my forefathers load, aim, and fire. Eyes ready: proud.
They knew that reward can come from rebellion.
And I say to myself: “My mecca, my hub, my heart: my home.”