Flash fiction: For the future people


‘There’s something in this one,’ Flora said, shaking a bottle. Green water swirled and an object clunked against the side.

‘Let’s go home,’ said Richard. ‘There’s nothing worth salvaging.’ He turned over plastic and tangled netting with the toe of his boot. ‘It’s all twenty-first century shit. How come they were so stupid, so wasteful?’

‘I can’t quite make it out.’ Flora held the bottle up to the weak sun.

‘A message to the future people?’ said Richard, sarcastically. ‘Sorry, we fucked up.’

Flora peered closer, shook the bottle again. ‘Wait,’ she said. ‘I think it’s moving.’ Slowly, she turned the lid.


A Friday Fictioneers story. Click here to read more and here to join in. Thanks to Sandra Crook for this week’s picture. I’d love to know what you think – so let me know in the comments.


For those who have been following my journey to publication you can read the third installment here.

65 thoughts on “Flash fiction: For the future people

  1. Dear Claire,

    I’ve missed you the past couple of weeks. Hope all is well.

    I can’t help but cringe and wonder what’s moving in the bottle. My guess is that it’s either some kind of disease or a cockroach. (the will survive anything.)

    Well done.




  2. Dear Claire,
    That thing moving in the bottle reminds me of the hope left in the bottom of the glass in Gerard Manly Hopkins’ classic poem or of the tiny hope in the bottom of Pandora’s box. Of course, it could be something more sinister, but that is the lovely bit about flash fiction–every reader gets to bring his or her own interpretation to it. Great story. It comes close to a plot that I think will be common this week, but the ending makes it not so common at all. Well done.

    All my best,
    Marie Gail


  3. Claire,
    what a place to leave the story! After all, if this takes place past the 21st century, who knows what the rest of the 21st century could have concocted to be in there. Hopefully this story isn’t too prophetic. 🙂


  4. Dear Claire, Fantastic story! I thought you had been gone, but glad your back and wow what a story! You are such a good writer – of course. Talent is with you and your writing ability humbles me – I could never be that clever. Nan 🙂


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