Kim McDougall

Flash Fiction: 25 Prayers

I love flash fiction. These days, I’m focussed on writing a novel and don’t have much time for it. But a few years back, I enjoyed being part of several writing groups for flash fiction, and I had several pieces published. 

I also love a good writing prompt. You can check out my blog post at Castelane for an article on how I used a job jar of writing prompts to inspire healthy writing habits. Here is one of my favorite prompts and the 207 word story that came from it. “25 Prayers was first published in Everyday Fiction

Won’t you try your hand at flash?


25 Prayers

B Kim McDougall

Early one morning, as dawn broke the blackness in two, I was three sheets to the wind and the sky was four shades of pink. Five minutes later, my sixth sense warned me of the angels who flew in from seventh heaven. Eight of them, not enough to fit on the head of a pin, were bound for the nine circles of hell. 

“The ten commandments have been ignored,” said Zacheus, eleventh Malakim to God. “Twelve nights and thirteen days of darkness will be your punishment.”

He struck me fourteen times with his clawed hand and disappeared. Fifteen feathers floated to the ground in his wake. I took a sixteen-beat breath and counted my prayers–seventeen in all—before remembering where it all began.

I was eighteen the first time I knew with certainty that our dimension was nineteenth in an infinite number of realities. My ignorance killed twenty people that day, twenty-one if you counted the death of my own innocence. Twenty-two years later, I still could not shake the angels. 

My case of Coors had twenty-three empty cans. I popped the top on the twenty-fourth, thinking that I would need more beer to get through the next twenty-five days.

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