Flash! Friday for Nov. 20: Hollow

If you’re not familiar with what Flash! Friday is, here’s the explainer. But in short, it’s a fun weekly contest of flash fiction writers, where each week a new picture prompt, “element” prompt (based on fire and ice), and a limited word count is given, and writers have 24 hours to submit their story. By Monday, the judges pick a winner.

The Nov. 20 prompt was this picture:

The additional prompt was to either include something/someone unseen (fire element) or include something/someone foreseen (ice element). The word count was between 180-190 words.

You can read the full results here.

My entry had a word count of 190 words, and used the fire element. Here is my entry:

I swallowed hundreds of the termites to see if they would feed on the dead flower inside of me — a flower that stopped blossoming when I was a teenager. But they didn’t take to it, as if that sort of dead taste were disagreeable.

My finger down my throat, and with a gagging heave, they spilled out of my mouth as colorless and blind soldiers on a clear river of vomit. Like grains of spilled rice in the grass, they were defenseless against the elements, and my feet.

I brought a wooden baseball bat for the irony and attacked the mounds. The soldiers inside snapped their mandibles to no avail. Termite soil, spit and dung flung every which way, like setting a grenade into a sewer haystack.

At the largest mound, I lopped off the top, and a queen crumpled out with a crown upon her head, and the most green, dead eyes. Her white dress was made up of the worker termites, and they vibrated on the grass, making it seem like she was still alive.

So, I swallowed her, too, to see if she would take to me.

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