Aphelion Issue 291, Volume 28
February 2024
Long Fiction and Serials
Short Stories
Flash Fiction
Submission Guidelines
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Flash Writing Challenge
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by Elizabeth Einspanier

It’s not your fault.
It wasn’t your fault the road was slippery that night.
It wasn’t your fault the other car was speeding.
You couldn't have stopped him from skidding out of control
and slamming into the passenger-side door.
I could hear you calling my name,
calling 911,
crying while they pried me free of the wreckage.
I heard you ranting to the heavens
this didn’t have to happen to me
you were sorry
you would give anything to take my place.
Even though you couldn’t hear me
couldn’t see me
I was by your side the whole time
telling you it wasn’t your fault.
I wanted to hold your hand
I wanted to hug you
wanted to tell you everything would be okay
I was there when my parents took me off life support
and I heard you crying
You felt so helpless
but it wasn’t your fault.
I was even there at my funeral
you were in the corner
not talking to anyone
but I was by your side
watching over you.
Can’t you hear me whispering
that I still love you?
that I never blamed you?
Can’t you see me standing in front of you?
Is that why you bought that gun?
It wasn’t your fault
and you shouldn’t be the one to pay for it.
It wasn’t your fault.
It was never your fault.

© 2012 Elizabeth Einspanier

Elizabeth Einspanier has been writing for most of her life, with a particular bent towards the dark and spooky. She lives in St. Louis.

Find more by Elizabeth Einspanier in the Author Index.

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