As I'd expected, 100 Stories for Haiti rejected my flash. Because of the very short timescale I had to send the best I had available, and obviously the tone wasn't quite right. I wish them all good luck with the project and hope it raises lots of £££ for the Red Cross; I'll be keeping an eye on progress and will report back once the book is available.
In the meantime, as promised, here is the story I submitted. It's very short and very silly, but I hope you enjoy it anyway. However, as everyone knows, there's no such thing as a free lunch! So if you do stop by and read the story, please consider making a donation of your own to a Haiti Appeal charity. For ease I've included various links below the story but feel free to choose one of your own if you'd rather.
Is it a Bird?
Henry had always wanted to fly.
Knotting the last string to the chair's arm he felt the whole contraption lift clear of the ground. It was working! The power of hundreds of balloons could life the weight of a man! None of his colleagues at the College had believed him, but now he'd show them he was right.
His hair ruffled in the breeze. He tried to straighten it but the chair lurched and he clutched again at the arms. He was glad he'd tied himself on as well as the balloons. They gave more lift than even he'd expected: soon he would be above the trees, then up amongst the clouds. When he'd had enough, he would shoot the balloons one by one and return, the opposite of Icarus, in steady descent to earth.
His hand twitched towards the gun tucked beside one leg... and felt only empty space. Had he left it, propped against the chair, to fall when he took off? He remembered a clatter, which he'd ignored in the elation of flight.
"Control, this is Flight 475 out of London Heathrow. We have an unidentified flying object at ten thousand feet. Please advise."
And here's where you can make that donation. The links will take you straight to the relevant donations pages:
British Red Cross
International Rescue Fund
Disasters Emergency Committee