“The Last Star” is a flash fiction piece following two girls who sneak into an arboretum in the middle of the night to hang out together. Then something strange happens…

The Last Star

White lights filled the night sky. Grace had never seen so many stars. People say that beauty takes your breathe and your words, but Grace finally felt like she could breathe. She felt the pull of the universe. “This place is amazing.”

Her new friend, Fiona, beamed. “I’m glad you like it. No one ever comes here at night.”

They were in the middle of the county arboretum, right off the path where the trees opened up to let in the sky. Technically it was closed after sunset, but there wasn’t a fence. Fiona’s hand bumped against Grace’s. “I like to lay out here. I have a blanket in my trunk if you want,” Fiona suggested. “I’ll be right back.”

Grace’s heart jumped, but before she could worry too hard, a shooting star caught her eye. What should I wish for?

Another star fell. Then three more. Then groups of ten stars started streaking down and disappearing. 

“Got it! What are you looking at?” Fiona dropped the blanket and it rolled into the back of Grace’s legs. 

“Is it a meteor shower?” Grace asked. But nearly half the stars in the sky had disappeared. “Should we tell someone? Should we find shelter?”

Fiona shrugged. Then the whirring of the tornado siren sounded in the distance, and their phones buzzed. 

The Presidential Emergency Message system had texted: “Take cover. Do not panic. This is not a drill.” Grace opened the message, trying to find more information, but there wasn’t any. 

As Grace looked around for the nearest building, she grabbed Fiona’s wrist. Fiona stopped scrolling. Besides their phones and a streetlight in the parking lot, everything was pitch black. The last star had fallen. 

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