Slawka G. Scarso

At first their voices are camouflaged by our voices. Muffed by our chatter; by our children saying Mum, look at me, look at me; by the splashes in the water, and the portable radios hidden from the sun. Then, like a ripple, we start to notice. We point our toes, step on plastic chairs, to get a better view. As the first threats echo on the beach, we drop our books, our crossword puzzles, our conversations, and pull our mobile phones out. Our cameras film the fight, the moment the knife comes out, and slips in. We hug our children, cover their eyes, our cameras always pointing at the scene.

As the ambulance silently pulls away, the officers ask us what we saw, and why we didn’t stop them.

‘We don’t know,’ we say. ‘It was all so sudden.’

Then we count the views rocketing on our mobile phones.

This story was Highly Commended in the Online Flash Fest Micro Competition.

About the author: Slawka G. Scarso has published several books on wine in Italy and works as a copywriter and translator. Her stories have appeared in Ellipsis Zine, Streetcake Magazine, Necessary Fiction and Spelk, among others. She lives between Rome and Geneva with her husband and her dog, Tessa. You can find her on Twitter @nanopausa and on her website www.nanopausa.com