They sat by the sea watching children play on the beach.
‘Alright?’ he put his arm around her shoulder.
The tears slowly running down her face gave him his answer.
It had taken her twenty years to return. Years of pain and guilt. She had been their teacher. They had trusted in her. She was supposed to protect them.
A school outing before the summer holiday began. A visit to the local museum for a bit of history and then a trip to the beach. It wasn’t her fault the terrorists had come that day.
The images still haunted her. They would never leave her. The panic, the terror, the fear in those young faces. The blood. The dead.
Governments fought aimless wars and encouraged segregation and hate. Religions tried to absolve themselves of blame. Terrorists continued to kill with no purpose, never furthering their cause.
She was beyond all this. She had only her memories and sorrow. She wouldn’t let them count her as their victim. She was here. She had not let them win.
This was her defiance.
Written as part of Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. The challenge is to write a flash fiction story in around 150 words, based on the weekly photo prompt. Thanks as always to the challenge host Priceless Joy. For more information visit HERE.
To read other stories based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.
Influenced by events in Manchester this week, my thoughts are with all involved, especially those children and parents affected by this devastating and abhorrent act.