Flash Fiction

Flash Fiction: The Gift of Air

writing prompt: this picture

Wanda glanced at her watch and then leaned forward to look to see if the bus was coming.

She sighed and moved back to stand by the wall. The sun was in her eyes and she turned to the side to try and escape its direct glare.

The bus was running late. And if she was late to work one more time, she was afraid her boss would fire her.

Her boss had threatened everyone, “I don’t give a rat’s ass whether you like working here or not. You give me one excuse to get rid of you? And I will. I’ve got 200 people waiting to take your place.”

Wanda glanced down at her fingernails – she had bitten them to the quick last night after the phone call with her mother.

She mentally kicked herself for falling for her mother’s lies. She was a toxic person, even her therapist said so.

She reached into her purse and pulled out her cell phone. Oh right, it didn’t work. She had had to cancel the plan last week because she couldn’t afford it.

She leaned her head against the brick wall and blinked back tears. Work, her mother, money problems …what next?

“Excuse me,” the sweet voice of a child broke through her thoughts. She had a handful of balloons clasped tightly in one small fist.

Wanda self-consciously tugged her too tight shirt over her belly and gave the girl a weak smile.

“You look sad. Would you like a balloon?”


Fiction under 250 words.