Written for the I’ve Chosen Your Words Terrible Minds flash fiction challenge.
I had to use ten of the following words. Can you spot which ones I used? Beast, brooch, cape, dinosaur, dove, fever, finger, flea, gate, insult, justice, mattress, moth, paradise, research, scream, seed, sparrow, tornado, university.
Veronica stepped through the litter of smashed bird cages. Bent wire twisted along the ground beneath her feet. Lifting her dress, she stepped over the glittering remains of a glass water dish that had smashed against the concrete floor. A dove lay sprawled and bloody, one wing punctured with wire, raised in a salute.
“They’re all dead,” D’Emanuele said. She could hear the fever in his voice; a sweaty whine that lingered in the humid air. She looked to him, watched him draw out a linen handkerchief and mop his face. It quickly soaked through, and he dropped the sodden material with an exclamation of disgust. “This bloody heat! We shouldn’t have come here.”
“We came here for you,” she said. She looked back down at the dove. Now that she looked closer she could see the feathers were crawling with tiny fleas. “I wonder what happened. Do you think Mistress Daze is gone?”
“She had to have been some kind of crazy, trying to keep all these birds.” D’Emanuele leaned against the door frame. Veronica watched him covertly, saw him struggling to draw his breath. She knew he longed for England and for Sarah. She gently touched a finger to the locket at her throat. She knew that longing. Continue reading “Tropical Madness”