For this weeks Flash! Friday we had to incorporate a Catch 22 into a story about the following prompt:
The guard has left the keys in the door again. At least he’s left the food hatch open, to give me a fighting chance. I perform my daily routine, hoping my luck changes. My shoulder protests as I contort my arm, but no matter how much I strain I will never reach them. I must be the only prisoner doing everything possible to stay locked up.
I hear heavy footsteps. I retreat to my bed and wrap myself in a ball. There’s nowhere to hide, no safe place. The keys rattle in the lock and then my cell is full of fists and boots. They are careful not to kill me, that would be no fun. I don’t scream anymore. I know that no-one is coming.
They think I killed a child. There’s no justification for a crime like this. I know because I have tried them all. All I have to do is utter a few short words and this nightmare will end, but I never will. I could never turn in my little brother. They won’t care that it was an accident. He wouldn’t last a night in this place.
I wipe the blood and tears from my face and mentally mark another day off the calendar.