November/December 2020Vol. XXXIII No. 2

The Final Commencement

Richard Stanley

The heat wave mercifully departed New England just one day preceding the 246th commencement ceremony of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The usual opening pomp was absent. MIT’s President expressed her profound sadness and regret that the Class of 2115 would be MIT’s final graduating class.

After the ceremony this august institution would close its doors forever. The eighteen students solemnly received their diplomas in the 108-degree heat. It went without saying that all of them majored in environmental engineering.

Note: This is a flash fiction story that will appear in the anthology 81 Words. All stories in this anthology have exactly 81 words.