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by • July 18, 2018 • Flash FictionComments (0)

Snap Crackle

The drainage pipe had the smell of offal coming out of it as if it had been stuffed with the intestines of dead pigs. Light from street level didn’t penetrate far enough for Edward to see what blocked the duct, but the smell certainly provided a clue. Some creature, most likely seeking shelter from the rain, had crawled down in and become stuck, leading to a long, slow death. Edward sighed as he pulled on the heavy Water & Power gloves, wondering how best to avoid getting any mess on his work coveralls. He reached into the pipe slowly, hoping to encounter whatever was producing the smell at a shallow depth.

Those hopes evaporated as he found no resistance all the way up to his shoulder. Stretching out his fingers, he still felt nothing, which produced a sigh from him. Now, he thought, he’d have to disassemble the entire pipe. But as he curled his fingers back and prepared to withdraw something snagged. A barb into his sleeve kept him hooked there, then became a pressure surrounding his wrist. Discomfort became pain which became panic. Unable to get free he felt that force travel up his trapped arm, to his shoulder, forcing itself out of his eyes. There was a crack and pop and an incomprehensible tearing, and then Edward knew where that smell was coming from.

See the author’s published work here.

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