#277 Aurora

by Aerin Bender-Stone


Pulling her eyes from the report, Mallory frowned at the last tin of pears idling in her hand. She left it on the counter as she snatched her cardigan and went into the loamy night.

“Liam?” She scanned the moors.

“Mal, watch!” Her brother waved, his copper curls bright, his fifteen-year-old frame folded close to the dark earth. The twins had become research assistants early. Analyzing data was Mallory’s forte, while buoyant Liam worked as their parents’ partner in the field.

As he hummed a note—some mid-range vibration—an irregular piece of black puddle lit blue.

She inhaled.

Coming from school by train, they’d beaten their parents to their summer station. A delay, she had reasoned. She continued to reason thus long after the county postmaster had taken pity and driven out to the manor to inform them of the city quarantine.

Liam was humming again, a higher pitch, and—there. A patch of electric violet.

She fidgeted as Liam spiraled away. Like a faery Piper, he sang, illuminating the microorganisms in the scattered pools.

The bioluminescent creatures threw themselves into the air, shining arcs of pinks and roses and golds; emerald, teal; azure and cerulean. Light splashed in fountains over their heads, radiance pouring from each swirl and hue.

Twilight settled again when Liam subsided, but his song was shining in the eyes he turned to her.

She clutched her wrap tighter and exhaled.

“Well, then,” she said. “Time for supper.”


Unknown said...

Very interesting and a nice, direct interpretation of the prompt! Beautiful description. Great contrast in that last line.

Sandra Cormier said...

Oooohhhh... I sense a Homer Simpson-like glowing stick of uranium.

Innocence and dread, all in one neat package.

Aniket Thakkar said...

When you go dark... you go all the way don't you?
That's just the way I like it - you type with conviction. :)

You should do this more. Wayyy, more.

Unknown said...

You already know my thoughts on this one. Beautiful with subtle depth. :)

Sarah Laurenson said...

The last tin, the beautiful colors with music, and the mundane supper. So much in so few words. Love it!