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My latest in the weekly Flash Fiction! contest wherein you supply 210 words max in response to the above photo prompt and the prompt to “include a spy character.” My entry:

My car had become my catacomb in the city.

Sitting in the driver’s seat, talk radio babbling and my seat belt pinching my stomach fat, I could see the beggar on the corner. I spied him a few blocks away and knew that I’d catch the red light, causing my car to be right next to his begging.

I averted my eyes.

He stood with baggy clothes, a thick mane of grey hair, and a sign with something about needing food, praising God or something or another. I was looking through my peripheral, after all.

As the light still rested on red, I saw him shuffle his feet. My stomach tightened against the seat belt, was he going to come to the window? Fuck, act distracted. There’s something intensely fascinating about the radio nob; oh, there’s that coffee spill on the carpet fibers of the car floor demanding attention; there, over on the right side of the road, let me read this billboard.

I’m sure he could see right through me. Maybe it was like one of those clickbait sites that talk about how Jesus could be a homeless person and you wouldn’t know it. Maybe he was Jesus, judging the fuck out of me.

Then the light turned green.

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