Hollow: A Flash Fiction

Written by Malorie Palmer

She said she’d seen things, awful things, and when she said it, her eyes were empty, like if you looked inside of her body, she might be hollow, like whatever she had seen had left her with nothing inside. She wouldn’t look at you directly, only glance at you quickly before shifting her gaze back down to her fingers, which tangled together compulsively, a nervous habit she’d picked up recently.

She said she’d seen things, unexplainable things. She said, “You’ll think I’m crazy.” He did. He was sure she’d lost her mind.

And then it happened to him too.

He felt unhinged from his own reality, seeing what she’d seen.

He said he’d seen things, awful things, and when he said it, his eyes were empty, like if you looked inside of his body, he might be hollow, like whatever he had seen had left him with nothing inside. He wouldn’t look at you directly, and his fingers tangled together compulsively, a nervous habit he’d picked up recently.

He felt as though he’d been missing an entire piece of the world, and he kept asking himself how it had taken so long to see it, to see the hollowness behind the eyes of strangers on the street. How long had it taken him to see it: all the damage we’ve done, all the damage we do.

You may not see it now, but you’ll look like them once you do.

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