Cause and effect

Searchlights, sirens, screams — night had changed from glitz and neon to smoke and death. Was it ISIS or Al-Qaeda? Right or left?

Many claimed they did it.
Other wanted retributions or offered thoughts and prayers.

“Attack is best defense.”
“We need martial laws.”
“Blame the cops.”

Soon the streets were filled with screams and teargas. Protesters and counter protesters.

Burning cars.

But safe at home Ahmed knew the cause…
He wondered when the SWAT team would arrive…

He’d forgotten to turn off the stove.

Later…
After millions corpses…
Who would have believed how Ahmed caused the third world war?

© J Hardy Carroll

The image made me think of all the havoc after a big explosion and how easy a misunderstanding might snowball into a big conflict. Is it time to sleep less soundly?

Rochelle selects the image and set the example for Friday Fictioneers. Join us drabbling 100 word stories.


—-
Novemeber 15, 2017

33 responses to “Cause and effect

  1. It would not shock me.

    The world is like a tense string. All it will take is a pluck – whether it is intentional, or otherwise. And in a crisis, or after a disaster, we don’t think straight. It is just all about the pay back.

  2. I really like this story – in a media driven world, it’s easy for small flames to become infernos. We all have a responsibility to question our sources of information and any assumptions we make, because lazily repeating and exaggerating stories just because we want them to be true, it has dangerous consequences!

  3. Only today the UK is remembering a catastrophic fire in the subway, causing 31 deaths. It was started by someone dropping a match on an escalator.

  4. It’s sad how quickly terror groups are to take responsibility, especially to acts that are not their own. In this day and age, no one would ever believe it was an accident.

  5. This is so interesting, Bjorn. How in a climate of fear a misunderstanding could escalate into something so cataclysmic. Well conceived and executed as always

  6. That certainly escalated. Scary. And all from a forgotten stove. That accident sounds a bit like the Great Chicago Fire caused by a cow kicking over a lantern. Good writing, Bjorn. 🙂 — Suzanne

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