Homepage / Flash Fiction / Deblog 28: A Moment of Clarity
How Love Works Probably Legally Insane Don’t Call Me Late When Business Communication Goes Pffft! Or, How I’ve Been Insane for Two Months and Counting Don’t Eat That! or, Life as a Pet Parent In Dreams It’s the End of … Almost Like the Real Thing Plus a Lesson in Sacred Spaces What Goes Down Must Come Up Dreams Do Come True Gains and Losses Need to Invest? I’ve Got the Perfect Thing … Very Super-suspicious, Pt. 2 – One Day’s Journey Very Super-suspicious, Pt. 1 – A Dr. Seuss Epiphany Life Is Hard Sometimes #TBT: These Days, I am Only Part Throw-Back Has Anyone Told You Lately … Life’s New Groove I Don’t Share  Purging Past and Current Pains Demolishing ‘Beatriz at Dinner’ The Hump is Hell Book Review: The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart Disaster Averted or How My Blog Imploded For a Minute Negative much? Tides of Winter: Book Three (The Felix Chronicles) A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Amazon … Research about the US Presidential Election: Invite and Share! It’s a Birthday and More, 2017 And the Winner Is … On the Upcoming US Presidential Inauguration Contest time! A (Potentially Lengthy) Missive on a Problem with Today’s Christian Church Pros and Cons of Working from Home Cozy Comforts How You Doin’, 2017? Deblog 31: Change Deblog 30: My Way Deblog 29: Hip City Life Revisited Deblog 28: A Moment of Clarity Deblog 27: The Future Deblog 26: Grammar the Day After Deblog 25: Christmas Get-Down Deblog 24: Christmas Hippo! Deblog 23: The Worst Job in the World Deblog 22: Dark Spaces Deblog 21: Real-Life Parenting at Christmas Deblog 20: It Came In the Wind Deblog 19: Do Me a Solid Deblog 18: Another Un-Birthday Deblog 17: Differences Deblog 16: On Giving Deblog 15: A Good Time Deblog 14: Happy Feelin’s. No, Really. Deblog 13: About Relationships, or Why No One is a Plow Horse Deblog 12: About Practical Girls, or Why I Cried While Watching ‘Through the Looking Glass’ Deblog 11: About Girlie Girl Princesses, or Why They Can Never Be Queens Deblog 10: Leadership Deblog 9: What Is Love, Anyway? Deblog 8: Happy Deblog 7: Thing’s Internet Deblog 6: Heaven Deblog 5: Change Deblog 4: Nick Hood’s Story Deblog 3: Jeeves Deblog 2: Exile Island Deblog 1: December is Full of Blogidays Plovember 30: And There You Have It Plovember 29: Citizens United Plovember 28: Another Brilliant Idea Plovember 27: Revolt Plovember 26: Outrageous Plovember 25: Figment Plovember 24: All Over Again Plovember 23: Quantum Argument Plovember 22: Every Kind of People Plovember 21: I Look Fear in the Face and Say … Plovember 20: What ‘Unfriend’ Means Plovember 19: Irregular Woman Plovember 18: My Reality Plovember 17: When the Monsters Inside Your Head are Real Plovember 16: Wild Heartbreak Plovember 15: I Nearly Quit Plovember 14: Nerd Life Plovember 13: It Was A Day Unlike Any … Wait A Minute. Plovember 12: It’s A Matter of Faith Plovember 11: Simply Wild Plovember Extra, Day Two! The Alien Hour, Part Two! Plovember 10: Look at California Nano Ploblano, the Extra Edition: The Alien Hour, Part One Plovember 9: Four-Wheelin Fun Plovember 8: Flight Plovember 7: Through the Looking Glass Plovember 6: Hip City Life. Or Something. Plovember 5: We Interrupt This Story to Bring You Standing Rock Plovember 4: The Horror Continues Plovember 3: Not What I Wanted Plovember 2: Norse Asian Fusion? Plovember 1: Fiesta! Plovember Prep and Preview

Flash Fiction

Deblog 28: A Moment of Clarity

No one went out into the fogginess because it was not possible to know what it contained. It was a consistent fug, seemingly airless but smoky, stale and foul-smelling. The thickness of the murk made it unpleasant when going out was necessary: all precautions were taken through the use of safety suits, oxygen tanks, lights.

She closed the internal airlock and stood in silence as the clock counted down to zero. She jumped when it buzzed and the outer door latch opened. It never changed, no matter how much she attempted to steel herself for the noise, for the sights that awaited her out there.

The silence disturbed her more than the view. Dusky clouds skittered across the ground, puffing away at each of her steps as if angry at being disturbed on their paths to somewhere else. Buildings materialized like the bows of ships in difficult and dark waters. There were no other people on the street but she felt as if she was being watched.

At the end of the block she turned toward the park, remembering what it was like before the fog. She imagined the sounds of children scampering happily on the jungle gym, skateboarders hooping as they flipped and dived in the cement course, tinny music beats from the earbuds of joggers, and traffic.

She missed the sound of traffic the most.

On the far side of the park she sat on her favorite bench, which afforded her a good line of sight. For a moment, she closed her eyes and remembered what the front of her house looked like from that bench. For a moment, she saw her daughter, sliding down the sliding board, hair flowing in the wind. Absently, she reached to wipe a tear and jerked when her gloved hand bumped against her helmet.

It was always the same.

Slowly, she rose and walked to the market. The doors stood open and she could see a few bent and rusted canned goods on the floor. Pressing the spotlight function on her light, she entered and looked around. The shelves were not as empty as she had expected. She selected two sealed jars of vegetables, half a dozen cans of meat, a few cans of fruit. The peanut butter tempted her, but she knew the plastic was permeable. Her heart lurched as she passed it, along with boxes of cold cereal and sleeves of bread, the desire nearly overwhelming her better sensibilities.

She hefted her bag full of foodstuffs, stepped outside the store, and froze in a moment of clarity.

The fog had lifted and the street looked as it had before — buildings and trees cast shadows on multicolored roadway, sidewalk, and grass where before everything had hulked and grayed in blurry singularity.

It was stunning and quick. The shadows began to fade and the fog returned.

With a sigh, she walked back to her home and resisted the temptation to wipe a second tear that slid down her cheek.

There’s fog and then there’s fog.

I don’t just mean the kind that comes on the wind outside — our minds and hearts experience atmospheric disturbance as well. There are days when the weight of the world creates a fogginess in our spirits, when we feel locked away and unable to see the world around us clearly.

You might wonder from where this line of thinking came and my initial response would be ‘because, a writer!’ but that’s not exactly the answer.

I posted a comment on social media a few days ago to ask my friends if they wanted to guess what I had in my mug. My sister-friend Katherine guessed mulled wine; I had Reisling and hers was the closest guess. I offered to write a story about a word or idea for the winner — she gave me ‘fogginess’.

And there you have it.





  1. Lyn December 28, 2016 11:35 pm

    LOL another story idea to add to your folder of future books. Really enjoyed it, Andree`

    • AR Neal December 29, 2016 1:55 pm

      🙂 Thank you as always for your encouragement, Lyn!

      • Lyn December 29, 2016 4:08 pm

        Well, you have such great ideas. It would be a pity for them to go to waste 😉

        • AR Neal December 30, 2016 11:53 am

          Aw, thank you! I hope they keep coming 🙂

%d bloggers like this: