“You display a refreshingly total absence of guilt,” the instructor remarked as they inspected the aftermath of Eila’s graduate project. Three days later, the ruins still smoked, and a scent as of burning hair lingered in the air.
“I grew up here.” She was looking out over the pitted field, not bothering to watch the instructor as he considered her work. Her grade had yet to be determined, but her graduation no longer seemed to be in question. The breeze stirring her hair was hot and acrid. She would probably have to throw away these clothes.
The instructor tilted his head consideringly but without surprise. “Normally that rather weighs to the other end of the scale.” He squatted to look at a dish-like depression some six feet across where the sandy soil had been melted to glass. “Good depth of effect here.”
She paused at the edge of the deepest crater, shining with a thin layer of black glass. There were no signs remaining of what it had once been. She considered his first comment.
“Not in this case.”
“Indeed.” They strolled on.
Welcome to this week’s Trifecta Writing Challenge; this week called for 33 to 333 words using the third definition of the word ABSENCE (noun):