Today is the first day of Nick Wilford's Overcoming Adversity Blog Hop, which aims to raise money for a very worthy cause. Check out Nick's blog for more details. Meanwhile, here is my little flash fiction piece about a gal who is determined to overcome any adversary (even Death) to achieve her end goal! According to Scrivener it's 489 words long.
Meri stares at the ceiling a lot. It helps distract her from the pain. The healer tends to her, but there are others much more badly wounded and the healer has set his priorities straight. It helps that she’s given up fighting him. He trusts her to stay put.
She’s counting on it.
Time passes and the fussing lessens. Soon enough it’ll cease completely, and Meri will be left to her much-needed rest.
Seconds tick away and she grits her teeth.
Cries echo down the hall—they’re admitting a new group of wounded. Meri draws a deep breath, folds the sheet back and slides gingerly off the bed. She pads to the door and peeks out. All clear. Back in the room she closes her eyes, expands her focus and summons the magic.
It floods her, swelling each strand of pain to a glowing hot red. It fills her with a new strength.
It hums and blossoms outward, covering everything.
Meri’s eyes snap open. She creates a portal and steps through it.
Meri swipes a broom rider from the sky. The figure floats to earth, spinning end over end. Across the field of warring Queen’s soldiers she spots a dark-cloaked witch stalking toward her. The witch’s blue eyes are cold and intent. Meri splays her hands and attacks. The witch counters, forcing Meri to duck out of the line of fire and throw a spell side-on. The witch crumples, now a steaming pile of black on the sodden earth. My battle is over? Meri muses. I think not.
Her wounds are barely healed and fatigue claws at her, but she drinks in the magic and spews it back out in a lightning arc of destruction.
There is a lot of mud, and most of it sticks to her hands and shins, bogs her down.
A gaping wound glistens in her side, darkening her grey garb, but she feels only a distant ache. They are underestimating her, thinking her done.
She is not done.
Meri senses her prey.
It huddles behind one of the mid-sized boulders protruding from the mist. It attacks with careful precision, striking specific targets. Meri slides from boulder to boulder, leaning against them. She stumbles between shadows, seeking confrontation.
Seeking an end.
A flare of awareness alerts her just in time—she throws herself aside as a glistening death trap whistles past her ear. She bares her teeth, breathes heavily through her nose, and blunders on.
The prey reacts instantly, slamming Meri backward against a rock, pinning her. Meri slips a hand in a pocket, seeking the dagger.
The prey advances, haughty in its moment of triumph. “Ah, little mouse, you have found me.” Meri grips the dagger’s hilt. “I have been waiting...”
It strikes her, draining her instantly of her power. It draws its face close to gloat.
Meri draws the dagger and plunges it home.