Flash Fiction: Missing the Obvious

Time for another story.  I wrote this a few months back and have changed the ending a couple times.  As always, if you like the story I’d appreciate any comments and please feel free to share.  Thanks!


Missing the Obvious

Turning around to face the crowd, Angela’s eyes went straight to her boyfriend Tony.  But instead of watching the performance, Tony was kissing another girl.

“That bitch!” Angela said.  She continued to perform their routine, pom-poms shaking and skirts flying.  It was half-time and the Blue Devils were tied with the Warriors 14-14.  Angela’s squad had a brief performance before going back to the sidelines for the second half.  That’s when she’d normally look for Tony and blow him a secret kiss.

But this time, he was lip-locked with Anne, that slutty new girl from Indiana.

Angela seethed.  But as she watched Tony and Anne, she noticed something above their heads, something she’d never seen before.  There were images floating above them.  A car above Tony and a gun above Anne.

Angela almost lost her place in the routine.  Suddenly she saw images above the heads of the entire crowd.  They were everywhere.  She felt dizzy and fell down.  She ran off the field embarrassed.  And pissed.

A few minutes later Tony found her behind the bleachers.

“Hey, what’s wrong babe?” he said.  Through her tears, she could still make out the car above Tony,  It looked like his car, a dark blue Camaro.  She wiped her face.

“Why were you kissing her?” Angela asked.  Her face was streaked with black mascara.

“I…I…” Tony said.  He closed his mouth.

“Yeah, that’s what I thought.  Just leave,” Angela said.  She couldn’t take her eyes off the car above Tony’s head.  It floated in a shimmering cloud.

“But Angela,” Tony started to say.

“But what?  Don’t say anymore Tony.  Just leave me.”

Tony turned to walk away.

“Tony,” Angela called to him.

He turned, a look of excitement on his face.

“Be careful, she just might shoot you.”  She smiled as tears streamed down her cheek falling to the ground.

Tony looked at her, considered speaking, then left.

The next day, as Angela half-heartedly ate her cereal, she heard on the news that a young couple in her hometown were killed the night before.  The girl by a gunshot to the head and the young man by car accident.  Apparently they were being carjacked and when the gunman shot the girl, the guy sped away only to slam into a tree a quarter mile down the road.  The news report didn’t say who they were, but Angela knew.

She dropped her spoon and shook in her seat.  Her eyes were wide with shock.

“The images,” she said under her breath.  Her mom overheard her.

“What dear?  I hope they weren’t anyone you knew.  Poor kids, I bet their parents are heartbroken.”

Angela hadn’t told her mom about Tony and the slut yet.

Angela noticed a vision above her mom’s head just like she’d seen above Tony’s.  Floating above her was a butterfly drifting around a small bush.  She had no idea what it meant.

“Mom, I know who they were.  It was Tony and this new girl Anne.  They kissed last night and I saw something above their heads, like a cloud but with pictures.  I saw a gun over Anne and a car over Tony.”  She started sobbing.

Her mom gently caressed Angela’s head.  “Oh dear…I’m so sorry.”  She leaned in and gave Angela a tight hug, holding her close.

“But mom, I see images.  I see things.  You have one right now.  It’s a butterfly fluttering around a bush.  It’s right there,” Angela said pointing to the space above her mom’s head.  Her mom rocked her.

“There there dear.  It’s alright.  It’ll be fine.  You’re in shock.”

Several weeks after the tragedy,  Angela told some close friends at school about her visions.  More often than not, they laughed at her or gave her a gentle pat knowing she’d lost her boyfriend in a terrible way.  “No, I don’t want pity.  You’ve got to believe me!  I see things,” she protested.  No one seemed to listen.

Later that year after winter had let up and spring thawed the ground, Angela’s mother went hiking in the woods with a friend.  She’d gone several times before and thought nothing of it.  Angela still saw butterflies above her mom’s head and tried unsuccessfully to convey to her the importance of it.

“Mom, please be careful.  If you see a butterfly…run.  Or something.  I don’t know.  Just, be careful,” Angela said to her mom as she left.  Her mom smiled.

“Of course dear, if I see a butterfly, I’ll run the other way.  Now rest, this year has been hard on you.  I’ll be back in a few hours,” her mom said.

She never came home.

She was found dead by a bush with butterflies gently floating about.  It was then that Angela decided she’d had enough.  No one listened to her when she told them what she saw.  They only mocked her or thought she was under some overwhelming stress.

Angela went to live with her grandma since that was her only family left.

One day as she sat idly in a chair on the back patio, she watched as a butterfly with orange and black wings flitted by, dancing in the air.  Anger swelled inside her.  She jumped up, grabbed the car keys, and sped off, driving no where in particular.

As she drove down a lonely two lane highway, she suddenly heard sirens.  Behind her a blue Camaro, similar to Tony’s, was speeding towards her with police cars chasing after it.  She pulled to the side of the road.

A gunshot cracked the air and the Camaro swerved violently, slamming into her car, killing her instantly.  When the paramedics arrived, they marveled at the butterflies dancing around the wreck, their orange and black wings contrasting with the grisly scene.

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