The house, like an unwanted dog, squats on the outskirts of town, whimpers in abandonment. Clarice pushes inside, out of the rain. A burnt odour, old and alone like Clarice herself, licks at her wrinkled face, snuggles under the greasy gray strands of her hair. She shrugs. As long as it's dry.
Clutching her sodden bag, she walks five steps before the house gulps her down its throat. She lands hard inside its bowels, moans, broken.
A giggle. "Got another one."
Clarice looks up. Children grin down from above.
One douses her with gasoline. Another lights a match.
Author bio: Madeline Mora-Summonte is a writer and a reader, a beach-comber and a tortoise-owner. She is the author of the flash fiction collection, The People We Used to Be.
Derelict is part of 101 Fiction issue 9.