What Pegman Saw – Winter Took Him

This is my second story for this week’s “What Pegman Saw”. I’m sorry if that’s greedy, but this story kept recurring in my thoughts until I was forced to go and write it!

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Winter took him

Fall was ending and there were few leaves on the trees, barely an echo of their fiery September glory. Robert entered the park on foot, his life on his back – camping gear, food, and a precious plastic container.

He bivouacked overnight. His nostrils prickled with the pungent smoke of the fire he lit for warmth, for company and for protection. He heard wolves howl as they welcomed the winter. Memories gnawed him.

Next day he walked one last time between the forest and the plain. He felt Jenny very close to him as he visited their special places. Then, as the day fled, he went to the foot of the cliff where she’d fallen. He took out the plastic container holding her ashes, scattered them and lay down. Beautiful flakes of snow began to fall, more and more heavily, a pure white blanket to comfort his grief.

Winter took him.

What Pegman Saw – A Wrong Turning

“What Pegman saw” is a weekly challenge based on Google Streetview. Using the location provided, you must write a piece of flash fiction of no more than 150 words. You can read the rules here. You can find today’s location on this page,  from where you can also get the Inlinkz code. This week’s prompt is Yellowstone Park.

WPS - A Wrong Turning 180324

A Wrong Turning

Dave opened the first monitoring point, which was wreathed in acrid steam from the ground.

“See, Chuck, just put the big steel key in the slot and turn clockwise until it clicks. There! Hear it?”

Chuck nodded.

“That’s reset the gauge. We do that every day; the magma’s moving and so is the ground.”

They picked their way between hot springs and geysers to a dozen gauges.

“You can do it yourself tomorrow, if you like.”

“Cool!”

Next day Chuck had reset the first gauge before he realised he’d forgotten both map and walkie-talkie.

Oh.

Which way to the next gauge? Right – or left?

“Dave, where’s Chuck?” Dave’s boss was anxious. “It’s two o’clock.”

“Shit. I’ll send the drone out to look.”

Chuck was relieved to hear Dave’s voice from the drone’s loudspeaker.

“Follow the drone.”

Chuck followed.

“This isn’t the laboratory!”

Dave chuckled.

“You’ve still got gauges to reset!”