You post a 300-word max flash fiction piece in which one of your characters faces a decision and resorts to flipping a coin.
I am working on a rough idea for a sci-fi short story submission for later this year, and so this little piece is based on my character, Shaari.
Shaari stood at the crossroads. There was little time to make a decision before her pursuers caught up, and she was panicking.
To the left, the road wound back into the canyons, into the Ganyx town. Before this day she would not have hesitated down that path, without giving the right a backward glance. There, her people had their dwellings, markets and businesses set up in a warren of stalls and caverns. In the past, she would have been welcome; maybe she still would be. Maybe even a shamaness would not be regarded with suspicion. But after the attack, she was unsure of who to trust.
But to the right…
She’d seen the Fetyx cities only a few times. She had always thought them ugly and cold- monstrously huge buildings of gleaming black metal and glass, sparkling in the darkness. Huge spires pierced the heavens; she could barely regard it a city.
Her pursuers would not follow her into the Fetyx city. Ganyx and Fetyx always regarded each other as alien and segregated themselves. She had once seen Fetyx peoples- tall pale beings with dark eyes, forever laced into bio-mechanical suits. It was these suits, their life without true skin-to-skin contact that always led Ganyx to see them as abominations.
But as Shaari rapidly considered her dwindling options, it occurred to her that regardless of their differences, Ganyx and Fetyx were all still human. So now she had to choose…sacrifice safety for familiarity, or sacrifice any comfort for a stronger chance of escape?
She fumbled in her pouch- a copper coin. The circle side would be for the left, the lined side for the right. Hands shaking, she tossed the coin; she could not be sure whether or not she felt dread or relief as the line came down face-up…***