Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Forties Club Finalist #55

The Search
by Hilary Robertshaw

The cry for silence swept over the crowd of weary searchers like a wave.

Craig held up his dust streaked hand and craned forward to listen. He could have sworn he'd heard a cry. No, not a cry - a whisper. Now there was nothing, just the drip of water off the rock face and the shuffling of his companions.

“Hello? Can you hear me?” His voice was harsh in the silence. He felt a hand on his arm.

“There's no one there, Craig,” Joe said, flashing his torch down the tunnel.

“We can't give up.”

“We're way passed the accident site. He's gone.”

“Then we have to find his body,” Craig snapped back.

“He could've been swept miles. The flood was torrential. Face it, we don't have the resources to go on.”

Craig rubbed his hand over his face.

“I can't believe...”

Joe squeezed his arm again, the grip tight, tighter... “There. What's that?” Just ahead of them, lying against the tunnel wall, was a yellow helmet.

Craig rushed forward. The uneven surface disappeared in front of him and he halted on the edge of the void.

“Whoa..! Shit..! Mike..?” He scanned the walls of the chasm. “You there..?” His voice echoed back at him, mocking.

Then, something pale, a streak of red and a white face appeared twenty feet below him.

“You took your time, mate. Now get me out of here. Please.”


Rohan said...

'His voice echoed back at him, mocking.'I liked this line a lot. The opening line too.

This one 'rescued' me from a bad day at office.

PJD said...

Finally! A salvation story. Seems like lots of death in this contest. Nice to have a rescue.

Peter davidson said...

A salvation story with a feather touch of humour delivered in the last line. Wonderfully written, powerful and tense, with a delightful punch line. Great stuff!

Oddyoddyo13 said...

Its a good thing they saw that helmet!

JR's Thumbprints said...

There's nothing better than a true "revealing" moment. Fits the "Uncovered" motif.

Aimee Laine said...

Oh to be found. Hurray!

Unknown said...

Hi Hilary

Nicely done, here everyone was going to call it a day.... thank the Gods for Craig's persistent nature.

Dottie :)

fairyhedgehog said...

I love the happy ending! And the refusal to give up.

SzélsőFa said...

i loved craig's faith and the optimistic outcome. well written, i liked it.

Laurel said...

I love a happy ending. The tension is great in this piece and the take on the prompt is very cool.

JaneyV said...

Hillary, I love you - thank you, thank you. thank you for this. At last a story with a feel-good ending. And so much the better because of all the tension racked up before hand.


bekbek said...

This, if you'll pardon me... is a treasure. Thanks. Feels real and scary like recent news stories are, but clear and to the point with a solidly happy ending. Again, thanks!

Hilary said...

Thank you everyone for your positive comments. Glad to have brought a bit of cheer!!


Deb Smythe said...

Yay, a happy ending!
Very clean writing. Nice job.

Vincent Kale said...

Very uplifting. Now hurry up and get Mike out of there!

*Word Verification: Cornsub
I can't imagine that'd be very useful. Tasty though.

Catherine Vibert said...

Nice job, Mike as jewel. Love it! I could feel the relief!