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Overcoming Adversity: #atozchallenge Flash Fiction

The Overcoming Adversity Bloghop by Nick Wilford

Nick Wilford is hosting the Overcoming Adversity Bloghop  for which he needs the participants to write something about overcoming
adversity for something we believe in. It can either be a flash fiction
piece, or an episode from real life.  He would compile all the entries into an anthology which will be released as
soon as possible, with all proceeds going towards his stepson Andrew’s college fund. Andrew has cerebral palsy and needs to study at a college with facilities suited to him.
The  following flash fiction is my contribution. It came from the letter D of the #atozchallenge last April:  (If you haven’t signed up for the A to Z Challenge yet this year, where have you been?). This is not so much a story of overcoming adversity, but a decision to make a change when faced with adversity, to stop depending even on faith, and let in the light, quite literally.

Day three and four continued to fade
into the night and yet she did not waken to the world because day and
night had united in her eyes, in  her breath, her very bones. All that
was left was a never-ending sunset, and the tower in front of her home
that shot up into the sky.
 Ever since she came to this house she’d
imagined a sprite sitting high up there watching over her home. Through
the years of her marriage, the beatings, the birthings, the making
love, she kept her eyes on that tower.
She kept her vigil by the bedroom window
now, afraid to move, lest she miss the moment he would walk in, slam
shut the gate with unsteady hands, and she, annoyed, would whisper to
him in a voice that carried in the thin summer air: The children are asleep, can you keep it down for God’s sake?
In her waiting she did not hear the
wails of her infant daughter whose first sob startled her awake on any
given night, and on to her feet. She did not move when her toddling son
tugged at her skirt, nor listen when her parents tried to shake her,
bring her back to them.
They found him, a week later, at a
brothel where his heart had given out under all the strain he had put it
through. She drew the blinds on her window, did not look up at the
tower again.
Months went by. The funeral wound down,
the neighbors left, as did her parents and his. She sat by the window,
the baby now a toddler at her knee, the brother playing on the floor. The room lay cocooned in dark, the children fussed. 
She could not
breathe in the incense-laden air. She snapped up the blinds, shoved the windows
open. The room needed light, devil take the tower. No one had ever sat
in it, she knew that now.

Damyanti Biswas

Damyanti Biswas is the author of You Beneath Your Skin and numerous short stories that have been published in magazines and anthologies in the US, the UK, and Asia. She has been shortlisted for Best Small Fictions and Bath Novel Awards and is co-editor of the Forge Literary Magazine. Her next literary crime thriller, The Blue Bar, is represented by Lucienne Diver from The Knight Agency, and was published by Thomas & Mercer on January 1, 2023.

I appreciate comments, and I always visit back. If you're having trouble commenting, let me know via the contact form, or tweet me up @damyantig !

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