Is Anybody Home? 100 Word Flash Fiction

Justine pulled into Mr. Hanson’s driveway as the rain fell down in sheets. She retrieved the casserole from the passenger seat and then splashed through puddles to the door. She turned the knob and let herself in.

“Mr. Hanson? I brought your dinner!” A smell of mothballs and Lysol hit Justine like she’d been slapped.

Groaning resounded from above.

She climbed the stairs and peaked into a putrid smelling bedroom.

“Mr. Hanson?” She crossed the room. The bed appeared empty. Leaning over it, she pulled the comforter away from the wall. A cold hand reached up and grabbed her wrist.

Did you think Mr. Hanson had passed away?

Then who grabbed Justine’s wrist?

Photo by S. Lindau

34 thoughts on “Is Anybody Home? 100 Word Flash Fiction

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  1. I really like the premise here. And I love the sense of space we get by the smells and rain. Also, I think your word choice in a few places echoes with sounds we imagine (like using “peaked” after she’s just climbed the stairs, because it evokes squeaked as well — or groaning steps because you’ve used the word “groaning” to describe something else).

    One suggestion: the first paragraph has three sentences all with the same construction. The rhythm might be improved by changing the last one just slightly to “Turning the knob, she let herself in.”


    1. Thanks the Lime!
      I really think this exercise is great for moving through a space and time as fast as possible. I really makes me think about how I can get the biggest bang for my buck!


  2. What? Where’s the other viewpoints? And I didn’t count the words, but did you only use 100 words to tell a story?!

    Haha, you had me in the habit of expecting threesomes or foursomes, but this one had all the elements of surprise and scary all by itself.

    Now I’ll be hesitant to keep an eye on my elderly neighbor, and I will be thinking of this if ever I have to walk in without his opening the door for me…


    1. Madison Woods! I knew you would be in shock! Hahaha! I hosted a Halloween party with the girls last night and was thankful for the word restriction! I knocked it out yesterday afternoon and found the video this morning.
      I am so happy to be part of such an awesome group. FlashFictioneers rule! Thanks again for hosting~


  3. Lysol! I think that he’d been murdered and the murderer cleaned up the evidence with Lysol and now the ghost is going to tell Justine how to catch the bad guy.
    Great flash fiction! 🙂


  4. Your stories have been just perfect for the Halloween season. This one is no exception! Loved the imagery, crystal clear.

    My impression was that something had happened to Mr. Hanson, turning him into an undead corpse. Don’t know what, but I’m not sure I’d want to be there if Justine found out, heh.


  5. I loved this one, Susie. Yes, rain. It had to be raining. With a flash fiction story, rain sets the tone and atmosphere with one short stroke. Lysol & mothballs; good, now I can see, feel and smell the tale. And of course, the ending sent shivers. Much enjoyed.


  6. Dear Susie,

    Very nice pre-Halloween post. She is doomed because the old man hates her casseroles and has finally had enough. The Lysol is to clean up after he murders her…




  7. This reminds me so much of my days as a flower delivery girl. I had a premonition that one day someone in a casket would reach up and grab my arm. Creepy! I shudder at the thought.


  8. Thank you so much for reading so many of my posts! I only hope that I have “hooked” you!
    I am working on a paranormal fiction book so I hope that when it is released you will read it!


  9. OK, Mr Hanson’s too obvious. I’m gonna go with an incapacitated Mrs Hanson. So the question then becomes… where is Mr Hanson?

    Why, he’s lying dead on the other side of the bed. So the question then becomes… who killed him? His wife, or the shadowy figure lurking behind Justine’s back?

    Why, that figure is nothing more than a harmless mannequin! Other than that, the Hanson’s and Justine, the house is empty. So by process of elimination the killer must be… Justine! She bumped off Mr Hanson earlier, and has returned to feed his wife some poisoned pie! The cold-hearted Jezebel!

    Eventually the police arrive, get their CSI on, and Justine pays for her crimes with a life sentence. Only problem is, none of this makes sense. It’s the kind of bizarre, over-the-top plot only a truly warped mind could dream up. Which can only mean the killer is actually… Susie herself! Admit it this is a confession isn’t it? Isn’t it?


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