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Flash Fiction


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Nyx sat by the warm fire, looking at the smoldering ashes left behind by the bough of an olive tree. It was not the first time the goddess of the night would have a vision by observing the pale flames and now she seemed to have a disappointing one. It could be translated as absence of volition. Hundreds of people were standing arrayed, dressed in ragged clothes, compelled to stare at a wall while in heavy chains. They all believed that they could understand what they saw, yet, their reality was that of shadows. Engulfed in delusion, they were doomed to be forever plunged into blackness.

Somehow, she felt responsible for the absence of light that inhabited their “kingdom” of false impressions. What monopolized her thoughts was to destroy any bonds they had and undo their ties. So she did and the moment it happened a wrought-iron gate opened before them. Now they would be free yet strangely enough they paused and waited in uncertainty. Some hovered for a moment and then returned their unblinking gaze at the wall. Some others made two or three hesitant steps forward and then they stopped. The exit was there, and the penetrating rays of the sun could be felt directly. Still, they couldn’t feel the warmth. As if the light coming from outside was more intense than they could bear as if it was blinding them.

Their garments were flapping in the wind coming in from the gate and the air smelt differently from the one they had used to breathe. They felt it, in every inch of their body but more in their chained feet because the metal it was made of, froze at once. What were they waiting for? Why didn’t they use the rough stones they were holding in their hands so as to break them? Again, they did nothing even when the chain became so cold that it burnt. The roar of the wind was heard in the distance like a husky voice, begging them to defy their fear of the unknown. But, imagine, they decided to stay. They turned their back on the promise for an actual, autonomous and independent existence and headed to the familiar spot they had spent all their years in; the safety of captivity.

Among the shadows and within the darkness of the walls lurked some small figures. They had always been there, hiding from a life they despised. They were children and all the truth was hidden in their luminous eyes. With their tiny, delicate hands, they held each other closely and stepped outside.

“The promise is fulfilled”, said the goddess to herself as the fire died to cold ashes. The gates remained open ever since and the wind never stopped hopping!

Lefcothea Maria Golgaki (GREECE)

Lefcothea-Maria lives in Greece. She writes poetry, short stories and articles many of which appear online and in magazines such as Adelaide Literary Magazine, Aphelion webzine, Eskimo Pie, Down in the Dirt, Bright Flash Review, The Sentinel and Tri-town Tribune. In Greece, she is a published writer of children’s books.

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