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O is for One

This was my entry for Microcosms Fiction on 27 January. The original prompt was:

We spun, and our three elements are – character: Convict, setting: Chicago, and genre: Romance

It didn’t really inspire me, so I pressed the “spin button” and got a new prompt:

Character: Architect/ setting: Skyscraper/ genre: Crime

One Step Closer

By Ronel Janse van Vuuren

His tie escaped its clip and slapped Michael in the face. The wind was picking up ferocity where he stood on the roof, watching his creation forlornly.

‘You can’t stop this.’

Michael didn’t need to turn his head: he recognised the speaker’s voice. It was the voice that had coerced him to design this monstrosity.

‘I’ve wished I could find a way to disappear…’ Michael shook his head. ‘Everything is now so clear.’

Swallowing, he turned to the crime boss in red. He was one step closer to the truth.

‘You never planned to keep the city hostage – you were planning to kill them all from the start. And I helped you by designing this awful tower on top of my beautiful skyscraper.’

‘Well, if we destroy one city’s populace, the rest of the world will be willing to pay anything to stay safe.’

‘Don’t come any closer,’ Michael held up his hands, still trying to summon the courage to push the detonator that would destroy the dispersion apparatus.

The crime boss lunged at him. Michael fell over his own feet as he tried to evade the reaching hands. A terrified scream rent the air.

‘No! Stephanie!’

Looking over the edge, he saw his fiancée lying on the sidewalk far below, nothing more than a speck of red.

So, who do you think? Did you like the twist ending? Though I’m a fantasy writer, I like to stretch my writing-muscles on occasion and write something else: did this suit the crime-genre? I listened to Linkin Park while writing this – their greatest hits always seem to get the creativity going.

The judge’s favourite line: It was the voice that had coerced him to design this monstrosity.

I always appreciate feedback, so don’t hesitate to comment.

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