Week 21 Flash Fiction Challenge Winner: Ed Drury

Carp in Hambrooks Bay

Today we’re pleased to announce the winner of the 21st weekly Flash Fiction competition at Indies Unlimited.

The winning entry is rewarded with a special feature here today and a place in our collection of winners which will be published as an e-book at year end.

A total of 33 votes were cast in the contest this week. The winner (with 33% of those votes) is Ed Drury.

Congratulations to Ed, and thanks to everyone who participated – excellent entries! Now, without further ado, here’s the winning entry:

Carp in Hambrooks Bay
Photo by K.S. Brooks

Gone Fishin’

by Ed Drury

We simply stood there watching the fish jump. I could tell Ron was at his wits end. He so wanted to be back within signal range so he could text his friends to make plans for the evening. Suddenly a dark shadow crossed over the two of us. A bald eagle swooped down directly in front of us grabbing a large silver fish in it’s powerful talons. We watched in disbelief as the eagle rose up carrying the heavy fish. Its wings beat powerfully as it gained altitude and headed for the tree line. We watched as it skillfully transferred the fish into one talon and gently landed near the top of a tall Douglas fir tree. The bird looked directly at us for just a brief moment before tearing into the fish with its beak.

On the ride home, Ron was animated. “Have you ever been that close to an eagle before, Dad?” He asked. I smiled, “Never son.” For the next fifteen minutes Ron went on and on about the eagle. As we neared town he pulled out his phone. “Texting your posse , eh?” I asked. Ron’s smile touched his eyes in a way I hadn’t seen for years.

“No Dad! I want to call Mom and tell about what a great day we had.”

After hanging up, Ron watched me drive for a few minutes before asking, “Dad, can we come back next week with some cameras?”

What a fishing lesson!

*     *     *     *    *

The photo was taken in May 2008 in Hambrooks Bay on the Choptank River which feeds the Chesapeake Bay. Each Spring the carp come in to spawn in the fresh water at Pink’s Pond and put on quite a show during low tide.


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8 thoughts on “Week 21 Flash Fiction Challenge Winner: Ed Drury”

  1. Totally enjoyed the story and it is a winner. Reminds me so much of fishing with my dad so many years ago, just the two of us.

  2. All the stories were good. You can tell when you win with only 33% and your story wasn't even your favorite. I had about three favorites and none of them were mine. But as I said, all of them were good. Thanks to everyone who wrote and voted. Indies Unlimited is an awesome site!

  3. Good job Ed…I have been blessed with the same kind of eagle experience up in Canada where I traveled to for 30+ Springs. The last time I experienced an eagle picking a fish off the water as he was gaining altitude two gulls were banging against him to try to steal his fish. The eagle just kept climbing with a firm grip on the fish with his talons, and the two gulls just gave up.

    Thanks for bringing back that memory through your story.

    1. I love encounters with Eagles. Here it has been an increasingly common sight. When I was a kid, seeing an eagle around here was nearly unheard of. Usually, any large bird of prey you might suspect was an eagle turned out to be a red tailed hawk or more commonly a turkey vulture. They are amazing to see in the wild. My attempts to photograph them in the wild have been abject failures, not in possession of proper lenses etc.

      Last summer, on a hike on a steep hillside, quite by chance, I flushed one from a tree top that was near level to me on the down slope of a traverse. He glided ahead of me along the trail for perhaps 10 meters or so before sailing off over the deep ravine to my right. It was probably the closest I have ever been to an eagle in flight. Something you never forget is the power, grace and beauty of these birds.

  4. Ed,

    I enjoyed your story. Moments like that are priceless. No matter how hard you try, you just can't recapture those special moments…you can only create new ones. I'm trying that with my only grandson.

    Have a happy and safe holiday.


  5. Fantastic story, Ed. I loved it, especially the ending. I have never seen an eagle other than in photos or videos, but I'm sure it must be a majestic sight. Congratulations!

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