Microfiction: Abandon ship

For Sonya’s Three Line Tales photo prompt.

Photo ©Annie Spratt via Unsplash


The table was set for dinner, napkins unfolded, chairs pulled out but everyone appeared to have left before the food arrived—reminiscent of something, she thought.

All she found in the kitchen was the roast that had been left to dry out in the oven and the soup and vegetables all gone clock cold, so she lit a candle before going to have a poke around in the cellar.

It was when she opened the cellar door and got the whiff of gas that she remembered the theory about the Marie Celeste and just had time to curse the lack of electricity and the damn candle before­—

Published by

Jane Dougherty

I used to do lots of things I didn't much enjoy. Now I am officially a writer. It's what I always wanted to be.

18 thoughts on “Microfiction: Abandon ship”

      1. They may as well be dead for all the good they did our stout nosy parker heroine! I’ve heard the radio play, so I’m a few imaginitive jumps ahead of myself with this one 🙂

      2. It wasn’t a show, it was a BBC radio play based on a theory that the cargo the Marie Celeste had been carrying started to ferment and when the captain realised the danger of explosion, he opened the hold to let the gases out and had all the crew abandon the ship in the lifeboats, tied together so they wouldn’t drift away from the ship. He reckoned that the gas would disperse after a few hours and they’d be able to go back. He was in a boat with his wife and seven year old daughter. I forget exactly how it happened but the boats drifted, there was a storm, the lines were lost the anchor line broke and the boats just drifted away from the ship and were never found. It really marked me as a terrible scenario though nobody knows for sure what happened or why.

      3. It was. And tragic because the casks never did explode, the captain had exaggerated the danger to show off in front of his wife and child, and the danger came from the ocean, not the cargo.

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