And Then Put Out the Light

This is my response to the Friday Fictioneers prompt for January 30. The challenge is to write a 100-word story inspired by the photo prompt. Play along by writing your own, reading others and/or commenting on the flashes we fictioneers create. The photo prompt this week comes from Ted Strutz, who writes some fine stories of his own as well as taking interesting photographs. My story this week, minus the translation of the prayer, weighs in at 99 words.

Copyright Ted Strutz

Copyright Ted Strutz

“Where are we going, Uncle Josef?” Boris asked.

“To the cottage on the hill. The men want us to take showers.”

“I don’t want to take a shower.”

“Hush now. Be a good boy. Take off your clothes.”

“What do the signs say?”

“They say that boys need to take showers.”

“What about my clothes? What if someone takes them?”

“No one will take them.”

Boris and Uncle Josef followed the others into a crowded room. The lights went out. Men screamed. Before silence fell, Boris heard Uncle Josef singing, “Shir la-ma-alos, esö aynai el he-hörim, may-ayin yovo ez-ri.”*

*“I will lift up my eyes unto the hills. From where will my help come?”

Author’s note: Yesterday marked International Holocaust Remembrance Day. The photo prompt this week brought to mind the words of Othello, “Put out the light, and then put out the light.” I chose to combine these into my story about a boy in the gas chambers. To read more you can click here.