House of Ash

The Following was Written for the Sunday Photo Fiction – Feb. 11, 2018 Challenge prompt below:

23-j-hardy-carroll-11-february-2018

Photo Prompt Credit © J Hardy Carroll

Mrs. Hudson looked ill when Tina arrived to babysit. She had a dark smudge of something on her hand, across one cheek.

“You don’t look well,” Tina told her.

Mrs. Hudson’s eyes ticked towards the hallway, and the door at the end of it.

“Addie’s been….ill. I gave her something. Just, leave her be unless she calls you. I don’t think she’ll need you.”

Then Mrs. Hudson was gone, and Addie had been silent the whole time.

Tina walked softly down the hall. A fire extinguisher by the girls door was strange. The smell of smoke stranger still.

“Addie? Angel, are you okay?”

The smell of burning was almost overwhelming inside the room, but there were no flames. The room was dark, the strangest thing yet. Addie was afraid of the dark, she always had a night light on.

“Addie, are you awake honey? You okay?”

Blue lights flashed from nowhere, lit the room with a teasing strobe.

There, finally, was Addie. Crumpled on the floor in the center of her room was a tiny wasted, blackened mummy crumpled in the center of a scorched circle.

Tina’s scream was drowned out as a siren whooped in the night.

(198 words)

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Read more challenge responses HERE.

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You might also like these other fictions by me:
Primordial – FFfAW
Look at Me
Puddle Jumping

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9 thoughts on “House of Ash

  1. Ooh, great tension in this one! Why do people in horror stories always open those doors, when I am yelling at the screen for them to run away? 🙂 Seems like however Mrs Hudson was involved in this, she’s probably long gone by now…

    Liked by 1 person

    • It wouldn’t be much of a horror if the people made smart choices. lol Maybe Mrs Hudson went to turn herself in for doing something horrible. Why else would the police have shown up at the end?

      Liked by 1 person

      • I was thinking a neighbor had reported seeing smoke, or the flames through a window. But yes, maybe Mrs. Hudson is doing the right thing: I like that even better. Or maybe Mrs. Hudson didn’t do it, but only discovered her daughter in this state and is going to report it — that would still be consistent with the smudges.

        Liked by 1 person

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