A. L. Kaplan Wins Flash Fiction Challenge

A. L. Kaplan is the Readers’ Choice in this week’s Indies Unlimited Flash Fiction Challenge. The winning entry is decided by the popular vote and rewarded with a special feature here today.

This week, the Reader’s Choice winner is also the editors’ pick, so congratulations – Ms. Kaplan’s story will also appear in our first Editors’ Choice Anthology.

Without further ado, here’s the winning entry:


flash fiction writing prompt koala cali 1993
Photo copyright K. S. Brooks. Do not use without attribution.

Kirby the Koala
by A. L. Kaplan

“Old Kanga can go stuff it,” mumbled Kirby, as he climbed from his eucalyptus tree and walked to the creatures lounging on the ground.

The furless things looked like cubs. If they weren’t worried about dingoes, why should he? At least he had sharp teeth and claws. Besides, he could always climb back into his tree.

All the odd creatures did when he approached was point and keep eating. Their food smelled yeasty and sweet, very different from the leaves he was used to. Always the adventurer, Kirby took one of the spongy layered things they ate. Instead of being tough and stringy, the stuff mushed and stuck to the roof of his mouth. It tasted delicious, but no matter how much he licked, he couldn’t get the stuff unstuck.

The creatures cackled like irritating kookaburras and their eyes watered. Finally, he pawed it loose and swallowed. Kirby eyed the pile of tasty food, while still watching the creatures. One of them tried to touch him, but Kirby backed away. He didn’t want to catch whatever illness made their eyes drip. What he did want was more of their food. Eucalyptus leaves were boring.

All it took was one toothy smile and the creatures fled. All their food was his. Sticky and stuffed, Kirby fell asleep on their square leaf. He didn’t wake until a dingo bit his backside. Minus some fur, he made it back up his tree. That was one adventure he wouldn’t forget.

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