Friday Fictioneers: Boy and Burden

by Eena

This week’s entry (right after photo prompt below) is a sad fictional tale dedicated to my countrymen who perished by the thousands under the terrible typhoon last Friday. Haiyan (local name: Yolanda) crashed into the Philippine islands, destroying agriculture, ships, and entire towns. But our peoples, with selflessness and compassion, have broken down barriers between social classes and nationalities to come to the victims’ aid. I know that you or someone you know has already offered assistance. For this, I am very grateful.

The Telegraph can tell you a little bit more. Some survivors recount tales more devastating than mine at IB Times.

In case you wish to lend a remote hand, the way is simple. The Huffington Post shares some SMS and online donation options.

Photo prompt – Kent Bonham


Alan trudged up the muddy eskinita. He took this same route with his father on the way to the merkado not six days ago to sell fish.

That morning he and Papa had strained happily under the weight of their catch, forcing passersby to sidle up against the walls of the narrow alley.

Today no walls lined the path. No market stalls stood beyond.

As he looked ahead with sunken eyes, thirteen-year-old Alan found himself numb. That the shanties all lay in splinters and the stench of death pressed around him like walls no longer bothered him.

Now orphaned, Alan’s sole concern was finding any means for his little sister, Inday, to survive the hunger crisis.

It was a burden heavier than any he had borne before.

An aerial view of Tanauan, Leyte five days after Yolanda blew across the province. (Photo – AP/Wally Santana)

Waray dialect to English:
     eskinita – tight alley typically for people on foot
     merkado – fresh or wet produce market


About this challenge:
Every week, writers around the world each submit a 100-word story in response to an assigned photo. Read them at Friday Fictioneers!