THE SOURCE

It started with the dead fish floating in the river.

Then the cows in the fields started to get sick and the dogs started acting wild.

Then a doctor at the local hospital started noticing the cancers.

Something wasn’t right.

It was in the water. The water that they washed in, brushed their teeth with, cleaned their clothes with and cooked with. It was in the water that they drank.

They could see the smoke stacks. Ten miles up river, billowing into the sky.

The factory employed most people in the town. We took them at their word.

We shouldn’t have.


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Copyright CE Ayr

Written for Friday Fictioneers hosted by Rochelle Wisoff-Fields (more details HERE). The idea is to write a short story of 100 words based on the photo prompt (above).

To read stories of 100 words based on this week’s prompt, visit HERE.


My first two novels are now widely available from several online stores. Just click on the appropriate link to have a browse and find out more:

justified new kindle cover FINAL 12A JUSTIFIED STATE – THE STATE TRILOGY BOOK ONE

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STAT OF DENIAL KINDLE COVER v12

STATE OF DENIAL – THE STATE TRILOGY BOOK TWO

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75 thoughts on “THE SOURCE

  1. Well written, Iain, catching the progression of symptoms through which the pollution becomes known. In the interests of accuracy (I used to write and enforce environmental permits in the UK) this wouldn’t happen nowadays in the UK. There are a few places in Europe where it might, as a result of criminal activity. It could happen in the USA, although it is unlikely. There are places in China where it is reported as happening.
    In fact, UK rivers have greatly improved during the last 30 years.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Chilling and all too real.

    I’ve read the first two of your “State of” books. Iain. and they are outstanding. The second was better than the first, so I’m expecting stupendous things from the third 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks Linda. Interestingly, of those that have read both the books, it seems to be about 50/50 in terms of which one they prefer – so I hope that means they are both decent! Editing the final book 3 now, so hopefully it will arrive in a couple of months to finish the story! 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

  3. That template has been stamped across the globe. Just north of me they have been clear-cutting land, bulldozing it clean, and planting acres of blueberry bushes. They saturate the land with pesticides and fertilizers which sink down into the water table. The move to the creek, which flows south, through my property, a wildlife sanctuary, going to the lake a few miles down that empties into Lake MI, where the city gets its water. All water is connected. We are doomed to the fate in your story.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I can relate to this Iain. As children we lived and played near a brook that changed colour dependent on what dye the shoe factories were using that day. Looking back I think we must have been lucky not to get ill. Well told

    Liked by 2 people

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