Sinkhole (short fiction): Part One

“Wake up!” Caroline shook Erik hard. During two tours in Iraq he had learned to sleep through most anything. Caroline’s prodding and shouting was nothing.

“Erik!” This time her prodding was amplified as the whole house shook and the explosive sound of splitting wood cracked the air.

“What?” He mumbled and rolled upright—-eyes widening.

“The house!”

“We need to leave!”

Grabbing the mag light under his nightstand and Caroline’s hand, Erik headed for the bedroom door. Then the front door.

Outside, lights were on in every neighbor’s house but theirs. People filled the street–staring at their house. Mainly staring at the half that now appeared to be falling into the crumbling earth.

“Sinkhole. We’ve already called 911.” A neighbor shook his head. It was an all too common occurrence in modern Florida. Karst topography close to the surface, water drained from the underlying rock for a growing, thirsty populace (and their lawns).

Erik looked at Caroline. “Stay here.” He trotted off towards the hole. A few neighbors joined him with their big flashlights.

At the edge he looked at the two rooms of his house now dangling off the edge of what looked like a 90-foot wide collapsed cavern. The flashing beams of multiple flashlights played across the hole like a Hollywood premiere—-until more than one stopped on a single spot under the far edge.

“A stainless steel refrigerator?” shouted one of the neighbors.

Erik shook his head. “No”

Darkness theme of loneliness and death is Truth of Life. human skull in cemetery on the pile carcass plant and dry leaves on dark background which has dim light and copy space.Deliberately placing his feet as he skirted the hole for a better look, Erik jerked to a stop when he could make out the brightly lit object. It was a stainless steel cube–approximately ten feet by ten feet by ten feet. Surrounding it were at least a dozen bleached, human skeletons laying prostrate before the monolith.

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~ by kipwkoelsch on April 9, 2019.

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