Aidan played his flashlight beam over the iron bars of a door with a massive lock. “Is this the one?”

The door opened on a cell rough-hewn from rock deep under the ancient tower.

Behind him, Felicity murmured assent. In the tunnels, where gps was useless, she was reading a paper map with a penlight.

Aidan pushed the barred door, and it swung with an ear-splitting shriek. He ventured inside. The rock walls were slick with a pale fungus. The air smelled sickly-sweet. A rat streaked into a crack in the corner of the windowless cell. Aidan flinched.

The door shrieked again and clanged. Aidan spun.

Felicity was standing on the other side of the bars. “I’m sorry. It’s only a precaution.”

Aidan’s pulse pounded at his throat. “What?” He strode back to shove the door. Locked. “Felicity?”

She backed away. “I’ll bring you food and water.”


Her footsteps dwindled as she left. Aidan set down the light, grasped the bars of the door in both hands, and shook. Solid as the rock. He slapped his pockets for his cell phone, but he’d left it at home.


Sunday Photo Fiction: 200-word stories.

photo prompt: A Mixed Bag