Hello! #5MinuteFiction has a new home over at Catrina Taylor’s website, The Writing Network! I’m beyond happy that the contest didn’t have to end with Wendy, who happened to be this week’s guest judge. I had a lot of fun responding to this week’s prompt, and it even helped me explore a character that’s been swimming around in my head for a while. My flash piece is below, with a corrected typo, but you can view the original here.
Your character is trapped in an unfamiliar place and must use what’s available in that space to escape. (no cheating and leaving a pair of convenient bolt cutters in a jail cell or something).
When I woke up, it was to the worst headache imaginable. Someone was taking a jackhammer to my skull, from the inside, and not holding back in the slightest. As I tried to move I realized my wrists were bound, my hands clamped together. I followed the chains at my wrist and saw that they stopped a a few feet from me, short enough that I wouldn’t be able to stand upright completely.
Dammit. This is what I got for playing hero.
Rather than sit around bemoaning the situation, I did my best to take in the small space, looking for what I could to aid my escape. To the credit of my captors, they’d made sure to remove both my belt and hair clips before throwing me in here, so I had no choice but to attempt to use my surroundings. Yanking on the chain was no use, and all it did was make the metallic sound echo in what I concluded wasn’t so much a room as it was a large closet.
A sudden banging on the door caused me to jump, and a voice floated from the other side. “Quiet in there!”
Great. A guard. Because I needed another obstacle. With a sigh, I pushed myself back against the wall, at least able to sit up. The room was completely empty, save for me. Unless someone walked in with a key and the intention to save me, I wouldn’t be going anywhere any time soon. Unfortunately, I knew no one was coming. Unable to do much else, I braced myself, steadied my arms, and swung – hard – against the wall, the metal binds clanging louder than I thought possible.
“Shut up!” How many times would it take before I got him to come in?
CLANG! I kept going, my headache getting worse by the second as I did what I could to provoke the guard. I was dizzy with the echoes when the guard finally broke down and walked into the room, clearly pissed and ready to hit me. “I thought I told you to be quiet?”
Without hesitation, I did it one more time, this time watching as he held his ears in protest at the invasive sound. He growled in frustration and charged at me, I guess supposing I was mostly helpless. Faster than he could register, I headbutted him in the gut before he could finish swinging. He let out a cough, as I’d winded him, and tried again. This time, I sat back and kicked – well, more like shoved both my feet – up and into his groin. They hadn’t thought to remove my boots – the heavy garments a weapon in their own right.
He doubled over, falling to his knees in pain, and I swung my leg one more time, catching the side of his face. He was out for the count, and close enough that I could go through his pockets, finding the key to my restraints. Soon enough I’d chained him to the wall, rubbing my wrists in relief at the weight being lifted. I could hear commotion coming from down the hall, and knew I still had a ways to go before I’d be completely free.
Don’t forget to check out the other stories, and vote for your favorite!
As always, think happy thoughts!
UPDATE: This entry won! Woo hoo!