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Assimilation – First Challenge for The #WriteCampaign





Shadows crept across the wall as Dani flipped through the books she’s torn from the shelves. She crouched lower between the bookshelves, hoping to find what she was looking for before they arrived. Page after page of long-forgotten information. Images of distant worlds she would never be allowed to see. Diagrams of mystical machinery that would never be built in time. Even recipes for potions that took far too long to brew. All useless.

She tossed the book to the floor and grabbed another. That jagged silver circle of light returned to her vision once more and slammed her against the piles of books strewn at her feet. Arms sprawled against the wall, she steadied herself, holding her breath. Hoping nothing toppled and cut the silence as the shadows grew ever closer.

The flashing light lasted longer than it ever had before. Her vision cleared just as the searing pain returned. The end was too close. She let her head droop and caught sight of it. The tattered ends of an orange piece of paper stuck out from a discarded book. Freedom was now within her grasp. Filled with a sense of euphoria, the shadows engulfed her and everything faded.


This is my entry for Rachael Harrie’s First Campaigner Challenge (of my Fourth Campaign, February 2012). The rules are as follows:

Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, including a poem. Begin the story with the words, “Shadows crept across the wall”. These five words will be included in the word count.

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), do one or more of these:

  • end the story with the words: “everything faded.” (also included in the word count)
  • include the word “orange” in the story
  • write in the same genre you normally write
  • make your story 200 words exactly!

Open with “Shadows crept across the wall”  ✔
End the story with the words “everything faded.”  ✔
Include the word “orange” in the story  ✔
Write in the same genre you normally write  ✔
200 words  ✔

If you like this, please click the link and vote for #189

Also, if you liked this piece, please feel free to read some of my other works on my “Free Reads” link at the top of the page. Some have been published as well. Thank you for reading.

Let me know what you think! I love reading everyone’s comments!


  1. Ping from C.M. Brown:

    Very intense! Nice work! 🙂

  2. Ping from Jocelyn Rish:

    Great suspense. And I love the idea of so much information at her fingertips, but it being too late for any of it to help her.

  3. Ping from Melissa Maygrove:

    Great entry. Very intense. = )

    I’m #149

  4. Ping from Jarm Del Boccio:

    Definitely keeps me wondering what’s next…good suspense building piece. Thanks for inviting me to come by to read!

  5. Ping from Cherie Reich:

    Loved it! Very awesome and intense.

  6. Ping from Tina DC Hayes:

    Sounds like the shadows got to her before she had a chance to use that orange paper. 😎 Good luck in the Challenge!

  7. Ping from Stacy:

    Real feeling of suspense right from the start. At the end I wanted to know what she had found and if was too late. Well done.

  8. Ping from LadyJai:

    Thank you all so much for your comments! I really love reading them!

  9. Ping from clarbojahn:

    Good job! Like the world building. Liked the hook. 🙂

  10. Ping from Arlee Bird:

    Interesting scenario portrayed here. Not exactly sure what was happening, but it’s difficult to convey much in 200 words.

    Nice job.

    Lee (#126 on the Campaign Challenge List)
    An A to Z Co-Host
    Tossing It Out
    Twitter: @AprilA2Z

  11. Ping from RaeAnn:

    Whoa! You’re good! And you’re right; I don’t always write short stories, maybe that’s why it’s rough! But thanks for stopping by! 🙂
    p/s. you got cute emoticons! lol 😆

  12. Ping from Julie Jordan Scott:

    I especially love the line, “The end was too close.” Because of your tweet, I found this challenge. Even though it is too late, I am excited to enter next time. For now, I am going to go LIKE your entry.


  13. Ping from Rebekah Loper:

    Oh, very nice, dear! I enjoyed the suspense, and I really want to know everything that’s going on!

  14. Ping from The Golden Eagle:

    I want to know what the silver light is now–certainly something out of the ordinary!

    Great piece. 🙂

    Thanks for coming by my blog!

  15. Ping from CherylAnne Ham:

    Ack! What happened to her? I wish there were more. 😀 Great job in the challenge. I really enjoyed this.

  16. Ping from Ann Cory:

    Also wanted to add – YOU ROCK 🙂

  17. Ping from Lady Gwen:

    Man, did she make it? I really want to know! Great job – well done:)

  18. Ping from Kitty:

    Great job! Definitely want to know more about what is happening here. Well written!

  19. Ping from Teresa:

    I really like this. Very intriguing. I was pulled in and then bam!! is was over. 🙂

    And not one mention of a taranula. 😉


  20. Ping from Sara:

    I love the mystery and suspense. Great writing! 🙂

  21. Ping from Lauren W:

    Yours was one of the first ones I read! I liked it immediately. Great tone and suspense!

  22. Ping from Daisy Carter:

    This drew me in from the start. Well done!

  23. Ping from Ann Cory:

    Exciting! I soooo want to know more 🙂 Great job!!

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