Flash Fiction Challenge: Unguided Tour

Photo by K.S. Brooks

The pilot was the only one injured, but he was as good as dead if the locals had heard the crash. There was nothing to do but leave him behind and make our way back to the east as best we could.

Less than half a mile away from the site, we heard his screams. They had found him. No doubt they would soon be on our trail.

In 250 words or less, tell us a story incorporating the elements in the picture. The 250 word limit will be strictly enforced.

Please keep language and subject matter to a PG-13 level.

Use the comment section below to submit your entry. Entries will be accepted until Tuesday at 5:00 PM Pacific Time.

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On Friday afternoon, the winner will be recognized as we post the winning entry along with the picture as a feature. Then, at year end, the winners will be featured in an anthology like this one. Best of luck to you all in your writing!

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3 thoughts on “Flash Fiction Challenge: Unguided Tour”

  1. We ran for what felt like miles without stopping to rest. Moving quickly without making a sound was an impossible feat for the dozen or so survivors but we pressed on in spite of the knowledge that our numbers would likely be fewer by the time we reached the safety of the Eastern perimeter. IF any of us made it that far. Crossing a shallow creek, several people stumbled and fell to their knees, taking the opportunity to gulp water and catch their breath.

    Crackling branches and inhuman moans could be heard in the valley below as the zombies crashed through the underbrush, their hunger far from sated after finishing off the unfortunate pilot. We were in the Dead Zone – the Western half of the continent had been quarantined to contain the infected. Our only chance for survival was to reach the wall and convince the sentries that we were uninfected. If they refused to let us through the gate, all hope would be lost.

  2. The pilot told us to go west. There would be civilization to the west. It was our only chance.

    With the natives hot on our heels, our chances are slim to none. The eight of us are ill-prepared for survival in the jungle. Two children, and an old lady, are our liabilities. Benny, was once in the Coast Guard, communications I think he said. My wife June was a Girl Scout and I was an Eagle Scout. This is the deep jungle and the natives are cannibals.

    The climb up the water fall was a battle all its own. How we did it is beyond me. The fortitude of Mrs. Salinger (the lady in her eighties) spoke volumes. The kids whined the entire climb.

    Benny took rear guard. There was no way we could have made the trip up the falls without him. I led the way back into the jungle trail. It was only a few more miles to go. Benny sent word up the line to me. The natives were at the base of the falls.

    “Go on,” Mrs. Salinger said. “I will slow them down.”

    I couldn’t refuse her. Her sacrifice was horrible to hear through the trees. We pushed through, almost there.

    It was the black top road that gave us the first ray of hope. The sounds of the town cut through the jungle air. We came to the outskirts of town as the first scout of the native tribe became visible again.

  3. We ran as fast as we could the screams of the pilot resonating in my brain. Adrenalin pumped my legs with the speed of an athlete.
    Only three of us could keep up the pace. I chanced a look backwards. Tony and Mike were a few yards behind but Brad, Wendy and Bill had barely made it half way up the slippery slope.
    I almost turned back to help but another high pitched scream curdled the air and I pressed onward into the jungle. After what seemed like hours of forging through thick foliage, I ran out of speed and collapsed onto my knees.
    Drenched in sweat, gasping for air I realised I was alone. I’d lost the others along the way. I could hear the ocean to the East so forced myself on toward the coast.
    What followed is a blur. I vaguely remember pushing a small canoe into the water, flopping exhausted into it and floating on a vast sea under a scorching sun.
    Wild eyed villagers on the shore waving decapitated heads as I threw up over the side….
    I haven’t had a minute’s peace since that fateful day. It was my fault you see. I bribed the young pilot. I coerced my friends into going to that God forsaken place and I left them to die.
    Now I’m haunted by their faces every night and the screams……
    Each night I press the gun to my temple with shaking hand. I don’t fire it. I’m a coward.

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