Desert Eclipse (Sunday Scribbles: Moment) #sunscribbles #flashfiction

Welcome to Sunday Scribbles!

I wrote this story for Diana’s March image prompt. I wrote two attempts at this prompt, but I scrapped the first because it was too dark and serious!

Desert Eclipse:

Desert Eclipse Sunday Scribbles Shorts

Izzy crouched low to the ground, hidden in the shadows of the dilapidated buildings, empty but for the desert critters that scattered under piles of rubble when they caught her scent. She sucked in a breath and tucked her fringe behind her ear as she peered around another corner.

Clear.

Knuckles tight around the hilt of her sword, she slipped into the next alleyway and jogged to the end. A gust of wind kicked up dusty desert sand, and she paused to cover her face with her rough shawl. The dust cleared seconds later to reveal a slim figure between the tall buildings lining the large street. A silhouette against a distant city, and her reason for being here.

Cropped hair, loose fitting t-shirt and shorts, worn boots. No backpack, like the one slung over her own shoulder laden with supplies. She’d never survive out here.

Keeping to the shadows, Izzy moved closer. Her combat boots sunk into the sand as she slunk along the wall, and the blade of her sword glinted in the fading light. Soon the world would be plunged into darkness, just for a moment. That’s when she’d make her move.

A few paces more, and the moon eclipsed the sun. Izzy sheathed her sword, peeled away from the wall, and pinned Lila’s arms to her sides. ‘You really think you’ll survive out here alone?’

‘Izzy?’ Lila struggled, but she couldn’t wriggle free. ‘You can’t be here!’

Izzy relaxed her grip and ran her hands down Lila’s bare arms. ‘Why are you?’

Lila spun around, eyes hard and forehead creased. ‘Because I want to be!’

‘Seriously?’ Izzy raised an eyebrow and waited. Lila bit her lip and looked away as the sun began to emerge behind her. ‘Well?’

‘Remember that book I found?’

‘Of course, you were obsessed with it for weeks.’

Lila glared at her and gestured to the city in the distance. ‘It was my mums! Her diary… She’s out there somewhere!’

‘Your mum? But I thought she was-‘

‘So did I. Both my parents.’

Izzy reached into her backpack and pulled out her spyglass. She zoomed in on the distant buildings and frowned at the small pack of wolves roaming the sands at the outskirts of a large encampment. Armed guards patrolled the perimeter. ‘It’s supposed to be deserted.’

‘It’s not. There’s a whole world out there! Rebels. Outcasts.’ Lila gestured to the diary clutched in her hand, eyes bright and smile wide. ‘They lost me. I have to find them!’

Izzy ran a hand through her hair. The determined glint in Lila’s eyes, that beautiful smile, brighter than the emerging sun, would be the death of her. When Lila left, the memory of that smile had her frantically packing. Leaving the safety of home and entering a wasteland crawling with beasts. She’d follow her anywhere, whether she’d have her, or not. ‘Shall we go then?’

‘What about your family? They’ll be devastated. You can’t!

‘You won’t make it without me. They will.’

Lila nodded and squeezed her hand. ‘You know they’ll never let us back in?’

Izzy slung an arm around her shoulders. ‘S’not home without you anyway.’

Lila’s answering smile was brighter than Izzy had ever seen it, and she felt a grin tug at her lips. In that moment, though the worst was yet to come, Izzy knew they’d make it. Together.

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Thanks for reading!

This story was also based on my #sunscribbles hashtag prompt of the week on Twitter, Moment. I’m kind of attached to these characters and feel like this moment is the start of something. Another story to add to my treasure chest of ideas!

10th March MomentHashtag game details: Sunday Scribbles Prompts
Past stories: Sunday Scribbles Short Stories

Share lines with #sunscribbles every week on Twitter, or write a short story based around the prompt and share a blog link.

If you love stories, check out Diana’s blog for more stories based on the image!

Next week? The Author Toolbox Blog Hop, and a post on plot or villains (Probably!).

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