Congrats to Kathy Steinemann

Kathy Steinemann is the readers’ choice in this week’s Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge.

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.

Without further ado, here’s the winning entry:


st felicien cougars 1998
st felicien cougars
Photo by K.S. Brooks

The Retreat
by Kathy Steinemann

My calves cramped as I panted and pedaled over a steep hill on the wilderness trail. I’m getting too old for these corporate retreats and team-building exer— “Crap!”

Doug’s motionless body lay facedown on the wilderness trail next to his bicycle. I flung my latest team-leader prize—a lame baseball cap with Bruce embroidered on the peak—dropped my bike, and raced to Doug’s side. His pulse was strong. “Doug, are you all right? Doug!”

I retched from the bugs I’d swallowed during Doug’s latest “trust challenge”. Or maybe it was from the sight of the deep red seeping into the soil.

The other riders caught up. Whispered words of shock echoed around my head. Gasps. Rustling. A muffled scream. Yet nobody dared say what we were all thinking. Our glorious leader was badly hurt.

I grabbed the first-aid kit from my bike. “Charlie, call 911!”

“Doug took away our phones, smart ass.”

“It’s over five freaking miles back to the hotel. Give Jenna and me room to work. We’ll figure out how badly he’s hurt.”

Jenna dropped to her knees. We checked for injuries. Nothing. She stared at the crimson staining her fingers. “Weird—lots of blood, but no obvious trauma.”

I frowned. “I don’t think that’s blood.”

Doug’s eyelids quivered. A slight tremble of his lips turned into a smile, and he burst out laughing. “Good job, Bruce and Jenna. Your sales team passed the emergency-response challenge. Are you ready for the next group activity?”

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5 thoughts on “Congrats to Kathy Steinemann”

  1. Thanks for the opportunity to do this, Indies Unlimited. Of course as soon as I pressed the Post Comment button, I realized that I had uploaded the wrong version. 🙁

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