Karoline felt the ache in her back radiate around to her front, the pressure increasing. She breathed deeply, willing her belly to unclench. Thinking herself safe to hike alone, she’d fled her family, their sole skill for processing grief in quarreling.
She longed for her deceased mother’s soothing hands, now that the birth was imminent. A child born too soon, her back labor excruciating, she prayed, “Mother! Help me!”
A whisper of mist stroked her belly, turning the child.
At sunrise, Karoline suckled her babe at her breast, wondering whether to return home, or continue refuge with Mother Nature.
© Liz Husebye Hartmann (2019)
Carrot Ranch Prompt (10/31/2019): In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about the Day of the Dead. It can be the Mexican holiday, a modern adaptation of it, a similar remembrance, or something entirely new. Go where the prompt leads