Prompt for May 3, 2016

Complete the short story/flash fiction, that has the following opening:

What do you do when you have the power of life and death at your fingertips?

I’m a firefighter. I’ve wanted to be a firefighter for my entire life, from the earliest fragments of my childhood memory to this very second. My life has been about being a firefighter, about serving the community, about making a difference in the lives of my neighbors. My dad was a cop and damn good one. My mother? She was a pediatrician who worked out of a local clinic helping those without health care to get the help they needed.

They didn’t make a lot of money, but we were rich in so many different ways. The community we were in knew my parents and loved them for their dedication to making people’s lives better. I grew up in that environment and realized that serving your fellow man gave you a tremendous feeling of well-being when something went right and a zealous desire to fix things when something went wrong.

But what do you do when the two objectives compete? What do you do when someone who is a self-confessed child molester is stuck in a burning building? Do you sacrifice everything you’ve got to save them, knowing full well that their continued existence will cause pain and suffering for those they have injured? Or do you let the fire do the work that the courts could not accomplish?

I needed my answer and I needed it now. The fire was running out of control and the one person left, the one person that prevented me from leaving the apartment building to its fate, lay unconscious at the far end of the open concept living room. Thirty feet away. Thirty feet through fire and falling debris.

My body started moving before my brain figured out the answer.

Post a link to the story in the comments.


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