Among the things we lost that night photoLast month I entered NYC Midnight’s Micro-Fiction Contest and yesterday night I found out that my piece, “Among the Things We Lost That Night” placed 2nd(!), which means I continue to round 2.

The genre I received was “thriller” and I had to incorporate “a home renovation” and the word “cover”, into my one-hundred word piece. The first thing that came to mind was a tornado and the juxtaposition between the stubborn mindset of trying to make things work (or trying to repair something broken) when it’s inevitably going to be destroyed, which is what the father in this story is doing. In the midst of it, the mother and her son finds him dead in the wreckage of the family home.

So, without further elaboration, I give you “Among the Things We Lost That Night”:

Among the Things We Lost that Night

After Momma plucked me from the dinner table and took off for the cellar, she paused to shout up at Daddy. “Les! Get down from there—tornado warnin’! Take cover!”

“Ain’t nothin’ gonna come of it! Gotta get these shingles on!”

From the concrete cellar, I swear I heard the thump of the nail gun, wind, Daddy’s cursing. When it was safe to come up, I pointed to a mess of scattered boards. “Momma! Daddy lost a boot!”

In all my nine years, I ain’t never heard Momma’s wails—louder than the tornado sirens. That night, our lives collapsed.