There had been no sirens for their ears; no weather man to interrupt their peaceful sleep. Nonetheless, they knew it was coming.
The twisting snake of storm bit first in one place, then another.
The family closed in around their most precious, felt the walls tremble, then were hurled outward with their life’s work.
The cars crawled by, observing the aftermath, sympathetic to the neighbors. No one noticed the 12-unit apartment complex scattered in the trees.
The bees carried on their own search and rescue, rebuilding before the town had even awakened.
This week’s flash fiction is based on my own photo prompt – that of devastated bee hives following the Kimberling City-Branson-Kissee Mills, MO Tornado of February 29, 2012. I was struck by the unnoticed impact to all creatures – great and small – that a violent storm has on an area. After checking on family members’ safety, some of the saddest damage around my Aunt and Uncle’s home included those of his beloved bees. It was initially feared that the bees had all been lost, but miraculously, once the queens were placed in the hives, the corresponding swarms for each one circled above their respective sector and settled in. And while we congratulate one another on our survival and fortitude, I cannot help but be humbled by the little honeybee’s tenacity and unerring instinct to carry on – without news coverage, government assistance, charity drives, or credit at Home Depot.
Somehow, the honey tastes all the sweeter this side of the storm.