Dale E. Lehman 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. (In the case of a tie, the writer who submitted an entry first is the winner per our rules.) Without further ado, here’s the winning story:
by Dale E. Lehman
“I don’t like the look on that bird’s face,” Frank said through the side of his mouth.
“Who’s looking at her face?” Will replied with a smirk.
“Not the woman! The bird!” Frank pointed. They were standing in the wet sand along the shore, waves lapping at their bare feet. Farther along, a pretty young lady in a pretty skimpy swimsuit was washing a shell in the water. The little white bird, though, only half as far away, had murder in his eyes.
“Who cares about birds?” Will said. “I’m gonna meet her.” He marched off toward his romantic destiny, leaving Frank to stare after him.
The bird turned as Will passed it by and screeched like a set of worn out tires.
“Shut up,” Will snapped, flapping his arm at it. “Fly south for the summer.”
The bird took wing, not south but straight for Will. Frank watched in horror as the creature’s beak opened to dozens of times its body size and swallowed Will whole. Then he did the only rational thing he could. He passed out.
The woman sauntered up to the bird and patted it on the head. “Good boy,” she said. “Shall we go home?”