The Middle of Nowhere

middle of nowhere


The body had been left to rot fifteen years ago, in a stand of fir just south of Fermont. It might have been the first victim, but it was not the last. Next found was the hiker, missing two months before hunters stumbled upon her body. Then, the runaway gone for more than a decade.

The young hunter now rotting face-down in the shallows of Lac Fleche was just the latest they’d found—not the latest victim. If the missing Inuit girl was any indication, the killer was still at it. Victims had been found over 100,000 square kilometers of wilderness, and after four years of haggling between jurisdictions, the only thing they could agree on was that there were no clues.

But Detective Tremblay was not ready to give up. Because the best place to find a killer that seemed to strike anywhere, was to go to the middle of nowhere.

152 words

This has been an edition of What Pegman saw. To read more stories inspired by the prompt, click here.


  1. I think Detective Tremblay has his work cut out for him. He sounds like one of those unconventional “think outside of the box” type of police officers, though.

    1. hehe think outside the box 😉 Or inside the circle. Thanks so much for reading and commenting.

  2. Detective Tremblay certainly seems to know what he is doing and where he is going. Hope his chase around the countryside ends quickly before the killer splatters the landscape all red. Well written, as usual, Karen.

    1. Thanks Neel, thanks for reading and for joining in the prompt. 🙂

  3. Man alive, this is a cracking story. Love the chilling build up of the victim’s details, that hop from on scenario to another, the order of the bodies and the range of victims – no pattern to go on there. Are you going to write this up as a longer piece? That chill setting works so well for a thriller. So well written Karen

    1. Aw, glad you liked it. Not my usual sort of story, but writing a thriller could be thrilling, eh?

      1. It’s fun to dabble. I’ve only written a few flash thrillers but it was fun. Love getting into the head of a slightly world weary policeman, though I always promised myself if I wrote a thriller the cop would not be a hard drinking cop on the edge with marriage trouble. Too done. Though then there’s the danger that he/she could be truly boring …

      2. I don’t think you could write anyone boring. I have a feeling you would rock the genre no matter what shape your protagonist took.

      3. Thank you Ah, thank you so much, Karen. Coming from you, whose writing I have huge respect for – that means a great deal.

  4. Excellent story. I’d love to see more of this. I assume the detective is a woman? Quid pro quo, Clarisse.

    1. You know me so well, of course she is. Glad you like the story.

  5. What a gripping story! I hope so much that you’ll write a continuation! Please?

    1. 🙂 That might be fun to write! Thanks for reading Penny!

  6. Dear Karen,

    Does this smack of a longer story? Chilling and well written. (I’d expect nothing less.)



    1. You are very kind! It would be great fun to write a thriller sometime, wouldn’t it?

  7. Sounds like this is going to be a really interesting thriller. Enjoyed the read.

  8. I was going to make a glib comment about the word count, but before I did, I copied your story into my word counter, and, quel horreur it is 153 words!!
    Right, now the little bit of pedantisisim (totally a noun!) out the way, what an enjoyable read. A whodunnit with a trail of breadcrumbs leading to the middle of nowhere. The best way to catch a serial killer, start thinking, acting and being them. Well done, Karen, I would love to read more of this.

    1. Thanks kelvin. Yes I went over. 😦 Next week’s story will have to be short! Thanks for reading.

      1. Is there any more to read… ?

      2. Nah. I’m still working a novel I started four years ago. At this rate the thriller will be around 2030!

      3. Yikes I might not be around then to read it! Not that I am THAT old. I do really enjoy reading your prose, and would like to read some longer stories that are finished.

      4. Same goes for me. Very much enjoy your work.

  9. A serial killer with a range of 100,000 sq km? Sounds like my killer from my contribution to this prompt or perhaps a small race of them.

    1. A killer over a space that amounts to 196 miles by 196 miles. Definitely a wendigo. Or someone with a car and 15 years to do the killing 😉

  10. This reminds me of the Green River killer who was “in business” before I moved to the Pacific Northwest. Can’t even imagine what serial killers are thinking. Nicely done.

    1. I’m jealous of you up there in the Pacific Northwest–I have never been but would love to go sometime.

      You made me google the Green River killer and now I’m all creeped out. Shudder!

  11. Michael B. Fishman

    This roaming killer sounds like he’s not going to be an easy one to catch. Is this the beginning of a longer piece featuring the Tremblay character?

    1. Nah it’s just a flash piece. Thanks for reading!

  12. peterkirsch

    Love it. Someday I’m going to force you to latch on to one of these great beginnings of yours. Because I want to know so much more.

    1. Prompts are excellent inspiration! I’ve gotten at least two novel ideas for them–one for a book that is finished, and one for a book I hope to finish some day. I don’t know if this ‘the next one’ or not.

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