100 word stories,  Fiction,  microfiction

Fire

She held the ashes in her hand, a small fragment of the life she’d thought mattered more than it did.

A child cried at her feet.

A man with a furrowed brow stood behind her, his shaking palms resting on her shoulders.

Wind blew the scent of smoke down the valley and out to the ocean. And the manic scream of sirens grew louder as they approached.

All their worldly possessions burned, the swirling flames hungrily consuming and sneering back at her.

But she smiled down at the crying child.

Everything that mattered was here beside her. Touching her. Breathing.

 

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