The challenge was as follows:
The Show Not Tell Challenge: In 300 words or less, write a passage (it can be an excerpt from your WIP, flash fiction, a poem, or any other writing) that shows (rather than tells) the following:
- you’re scared and hungry
- it’s dusk
- you think someone is following you
- and just for fun, see if you can involve all five senses AND include these random words: shimmer, saccadic, substance, and salt.
This came in at 223 words
Into the Dark
The third sun has set and lights are coming on, their shimmer casting more shadows for me to see things in. I can smell the salt left on the rocks and wonder if the waves ever tire of their unceasing attack. I suspect not. After all, water has substance and they win in the end. My stomach is grumbling but the pounding of my heart is louder, my eyes aching from saccadic movement, trying to see into the dark. I can taste blood where a ceelau trotted out of some bushes and startled me into biting my own lip.
A sound behind me makes me jump and I resist the urge to look over my shoulder. But I walk faster. After all, there is no one around to save me if something happens. As I near the end of the promenade, I slow down. There’s a long patch of deep shadow where three or four lights have failed. Probably tachthis trying to break shells. I hear that sound again, the scrape of a boot on stone, and my skin prickles as the fine hairs rise on my arms, my neck. If I stay here I am trapped. Everything is quiet now, but for the gentle hiss of seawater on the pebble beach. I leave the light. I do not return.