There are always so many amazing stories that emerge after natural disasters. Australia is no stranger to drought, fire, pestilence, flood...and even the odd earthquake and tornado of late. My Overcoming Adversity story features a flood, a tough cookie blase about yet another natural disasters and a panicked husband on the other side of the world...I hope you enjoy it.
Surrounded by the Enemy
Sunny’s heart pounded in time with the steady drumbeat on the roof. She had never heard rain like it. She was not given to fear but tonight the sounds unnerved her...just a little. The whispers of wet leaves blowing on the wind had become a roaring as the galvanized roof took a pummeling. If she allowed herself to turn fanciful, she could imagine a jack-booted army marching overhead.
Enough of that! Think about Matt. She wished she’d not been so abrupt when he’d rung earlier in the night and shouted down the phone at her.
‘Sunny, get out of that house--now!’
‘I’m not leaving my home for some itty-bitty water. I’ve been through worse, Matt. No matter how bad the rain is, we’ve never been flooded.’
‘Don’t be infantile. I might be thousands of kilometers away but it’s looking pretty grim according to the BBC. I can do the math. Our house will be under by metres before the night is over!’
‘Darling, you’re such a worry wart. I know it goes with the territory. Nice of you to be so concerned, but last time I looked, the river was way down. The weather reports never get it right. Always sensationalism. They get off on scaring people.’
‘You’re so stubborn. Does that go with the territory?’ Sunny thought it best not to answer that. Matt continued: ‘I’m sending Josh over.’
‘Don’t waste your time, darling. Josh’s already been. I told him I’m staying. I’m a big girl.’
‘I love you Sunny. I can’t live without you. Leave for me and the baby if you won’t do it for yourself.’
She hadn’t listened. Now it was too late. Her house was surrounded; the enemy was at the door.
Sunny pottered around the kitchen fixing a snack, singing on top of her voice--anything to keep her mind off the now raging water. She was afraid to go too near the windows in case they shattered. She could just make out palm trees straining in the gathering gloom, fronds swiping the sodden grass in long wet trails.
She sat down at the kitchen table, rubbed her stomach, whispered to the little soul inside. The water could always go down, couldn't it?
She shivered in the icy coolness. She pulled her parka over her jeans, leaving it unzipped. Baby, you’re so big…
Uneaten snack pushed aside, she huddled in her chair, alert to the river sounds. ‘Matt, my darling, I love you,’ she whispered, ‘I’m sorry.’
Crack! A eucalyptus tree speared her kitchen window--shattering shards of skittering glass pinged on the tiles. Rain poured in.
‘Help me God,’ she whispered, clutching her stomach.
‘Run!’ Josh shouted down the line. ‘Get the ladder and climb into the roof! I'm coming!’
The phone dropped from her freezing fingers. Water crashed through the kitchen door and sucked and swirled around her sopping feet.
Sunny was tough. She’d overcome adversity many times before—bushfires, cyclones, drought...and now...floods. She’d survive this. She had to—for Matt and their baby.
She began to climb as the first pain struck.
This bloghop is to help Andrew who has cerebal-palsy. Nick Wilford wants your 500 words of flash fiction on the theme, Overcoming Adversity. He will collate the stories and all proceeds will go towards Andrew's college fund. This is a great challenge. I hope you'll join me in posting a story between Feb 4-5th.
Click here to read more Overcoming Adversity stories...