fantasy · flash friday · Short Story · Writing

Friday Flash: Dust Devil

Not entirely sure about this one, but here we go. 😉

The dust devil rose on the horizon, where the lake met the river. It wound lazily among the clouds.

She gaped at it for a heartbeat, than snatched the basket of clothes and ran back to the house. Bare feet slid in the mud, but she didn’t dare slow down.

She looked back only once. All the fishing boats were coming in.

Her mother and aunts were in the front yard, shelling peas and laughing.

“It’s coming!” she gasped. “The dust devil. Over the lake.”

Her mother frowned. “Are you sure – you must be. Give me that. Get the children.”


70 thoughts on “Friday Flash: Dust Devil

  1. Wow, great tension building in this one Sonia! I’m glad the women didn’t quibble with her about whether it was real or not. Is a dust devil the same as a water spout since it was over the water?

  2. The great title got me first, then the tension of the story. I sensed her sudden fright.. One minor quibble. I would delete the aunt’s line: “Give me that.”…assuming you mean the basket. In her run and mudslide, I would think she would have dropped it…or the aunt, frantic to get the kids in the house…would not be focusing on the clothes basket. Thank you for visiting mine.

  3. I have actually been in some pretty violent dust devils so I can relate to the frantic need for shelter but mud and the presence of clouds and so much water tells me this might be a twister or water spout. Unless the devil is a creature?

  4. I love something that gives me an image and this one was so clear that I had two going at once. A dust storm AND a dust made being, both made me want to get out of there … fast.

  5. I like the tension, but like the other have said, I wonder weather you mean a tornado or water spout instead. Also, I would like the mom’s reaction to feel more urgent, to match the daughter’s.

  6. I like the way that it opened for me not completely clear whether dust devils were bad or something interesting she wanted to tell the others, and then the ending of that, after the tension of her racing home, had a nice release.

  7. Loved the imagery her bare feet sliding in the mud etc very dramatic and almost does not matter who or what the dust devil is — it is clearly evil. Well done!

  8. Knowing how much I love fantasy scenarios, that better be a dust devil instead of just wind and dust. xD Based on how they are reacting though, they are either far two scared of simple things and could never survive in the “real world” or it is what I’m hoping for. 😀

  9. When you say “Not sure about this” it’s always brilliant. This is a great example of perfect flash fiction. You have sculpted a precise and beautifully carved moment of terror!

      1. oh. sorry. well, i guess we don’t have to stick to the picture 100%. actually, we really can do whatever we want i suppose.

  10. Hi there Sonia —

    Nice, compact story — and it is a proper story, with a sense of danger, change, place, and character. 🙂

    For the ‘she’ in “She gaped…” You might have given her a name, instead. And “Are you sure?” would probably stand ok without the “you must be.”

    But, those are just some trifling thoughts.

    I like it.


    PS: Also like the new (to me) site design.

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