In the filter of the rain the knock had sounded like thunder.

I tiptoed to the door. Who was out in this storm?

Peeking through the peephole, I could barely make out the form of a man leaning against the door. Wrinkles covered his haggard face, and his eyes were bloodshot. I opened the door.

“The backyard,” he gasped.

“Who are you?” I asked.

“Before it’s too late.”

He rushed past me and was out the back before I could protest. I ran after him.

He stopped in the center of the lawn and immediately began digging, tearing up the grass with his hands. The rain ran mud into his hole. Within ten minutes, he’d hit a concrete slab, with two rusted metal handles embedded within it.

“What the hell is that?” I cried in the rain.

“Help,” he pleaded. Dumbstruck, I could only comply.

Underneath was water. The old man reached in up to his elbows. I stared as he pulled out the nude body of a young woman and held her to his chest.

She took a breath and he started crying.

“My daughter,” he said.

Drowning was first published online for the now defunct ficlets, and is archived at the ficlets memorial.

© 2007 Jon Thysell. Some Rights Reserved.
Drowning by Jon Thysell is licensed under a
Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 3.0 United States License.

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