When Jeanine cracked open the glowstick, she never expected this.
Sure, the package had been plastered with warnings. What product wasn’t covered in caveats these days? So the warnings and dire predictions of doom became virtually invisible to the masses of consumers exposed to them. Like so many others, Jeanine ceased to see actual words anymore, or they just bypassed her consciousness and filed themselves in the back of her mind along with useless trivia like knowing George Washington had wooden teeth or Ketchup was neither fruit nor vegetable.
The warnings had been there, but she had discounted them.
Now she looked at her glowing hands in dismay. She had used the glowstick at her own peril, and the caveat had been right. Though she had washed her hand once the fluorescent liquid had touch the skin of her palm, it had done no good. With budding horror, she watched the golden incandescence advance to her digits, creep up her arm, and slowly spread throughout her body. Even her clothes glowed in the pale moonlight. What had she been thinking? So what if the substance was non toxic? The momentary necessity to see what she was doing had doomed her utterly.
She had become a beacon to the dark things lurking in the moonless night. She listened to the howling in the distance and shivered.
*This was originally written for the six minute story site, but I wanted to devote more time to it. Let’s face it. The last few times I’ve written six minute stories, I’ve deleted them and worked what I had into something more. I cheated. But I’m unrepentant. The site serves as great inspiration, and even though the timer ran out on me, I’ve gotten some great stories from it. If you haven’t already, you should check it out.