Chalk in the Rain

by Rod Drake

Thunder boomed, rattling the windows and then the downpour came; Iris watched it, thinking that it hadn’t rained like this since... since the hearing when the court took her daughter away from her, three months ago now. Iris remembered Chloe’s sidewalk chalk, outside, in the backyard, without a lid as she always left it. In sudden panic she raced through the house, stumbling over piled newspapers and half-packed boxes of Chloe’s clothes, running out the patio door, looking frantically for the chalk. The rain pounded her, lashing her hair to her face and neck, smearing her glasses with big drops, but somehow Iris found the chalk and grabbed the container, slipping and sliding her way back inside the house, shivering in the cold wetness of her clothes and the empty house. The chalk container was half filled with rainwater, and the chalk had begun to dissolve, mixing in a thick mishmash of colors, like memories running together, sinking slowly like a lump to the bottom of the plastic container. Iris put the container on the floor, sat down at the kitchen table on the dark afternoon, and began to cry as the thunder rumbled in the distance and the rain died away.


Rod Drake, who scored The Big Scoop, has been to Hollywood, has been to Deadwood, and keeps on searching for a heart of gold. Check out his longer stories in Flashes of Speculation, Fictional Musings, Flash Flooding, Flash Forward and MicroHorror.