Unknown toll

21 Feb

Photo copyright by David Stewart

The wild clanging of the heavy iron bell that normally summons the kids to dinner wakes me, a sound not indigenous to this late hour. Pulse pounding, bare feet slapping worn oak, I grapple with the shackles of a sinuous cotton gown in my mad scramble to the back door. I pull aside the curtain as lightning splits the sky, illuminating a monster that should not exist outside of nightmares. Hail begins to strafe the roof as I whirl to rouse my sleeping family, my frantic cries a whisper against the train-like roar outside. “Get to the cellar! Twister!”
One hundred words in response to David Stewart‘s photo, selected this week by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields, the leader of the pack at Friday Fictioneers. You can check out other submissions by clicking the little blue guy below.


Posted by on February 21, 2014 in Challenges, Fiction



10 responses to “Unknown toll

  1. silentlyheardonce

    February 21, 2014 at 5:05 PM

    Original and a frightening scenario.

  2. Victoria K Gallagher

    February 21, 2014 at 9:04 PM

    That’s a scary scene to picture. I hope they got out in time. This, to me, could be a ‘carry-it-on’ story…. A very frightening tale.

  3. patrickprinsloo

    February 22, 2014 at 6:33 AM

    A great build up to the climax. Well done.

  4. helenrj

    February 22, 2014 at 8:08 AM

    Well-written…and very scary. I have been in the cellar many a time waiting for the storm to blow over. What is very good about this piece is that you took an ordinary object and turned it into a harbinger. It has great ‘slap’ factor (shock and fear).

  5. sustainabilitea

    February 22, 2014 at 4:41 PM

    A nightmare!


  6. patriciaruthsusan

    February 22, 2014 at 11:01 PM

    Good story with the kind of description that paints a word picture leading to a frightening ending.

  7. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)

    February 23, 2014 at 4:05 PM

    Oh a twister twist… nightmarish… I did not expec that end.

  8. Nan Falkner

    February 24, 2014 at 4:18 AM

    I live in tornado alley in Kansas (land of Oz). This is a nightmare well written! Nan

  9. rochellewisoff

    February 24, 2014 at 6:07 AM

    Dear Michelle,

    As always, well written. I felt the tension coupled with raw panic. Thank you for a good read.



  10. atrm61

    February 24, 2014 at 9:49 AM

    Brilliant piece!Loved it!


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: