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literature

Flash Fiction Day 2018

jdeyke's avatar
By jdeyke   |   Watch
2 3 191 (1 Today)
Published: June 17, 2018
15:20

The rain is coming down relentlessly.  Endless showers interrupted only by truly torrential downpours. Though it is not night, the sky is black, lit only by occasional flashes of lightning.

A young girl runs, walks, staggers up the hill.  She stumbles, falls, adding yet another stain of mud, blood, to her already ragged dress.  She does not cry out, hardly appears to notice.  She gets up, clutching her precious book to her chest protectively.

The book is soaked, tattered, worn, missing a page at least.  Still the girl holds it like a loved one, a reminder of happier times.

At last she arrives, opens the wrought iron gates.  She runs down the one path she knows, to the one familiar, reassuring, place.  There she falls to her knees.  Her face, streaked wet with rain, tears. She proffers her book to the stone.  “What does the fox say?” she implores desperately.  But the grave offers no reply.

16:04

Tonight is the night.  All of the effort, the years of learning, of study, of research, will pay off.  The night is black, the moon visible only as a dark gap in the stars. A lone figure walks steadily, stealthily up the hill.  Midnight.

The wrought iron gates part with a metallic scraping squeal, but at this time of night there is no one around to hear.  The figure glides noiselessly down the well-worn path to the weathered stone she knows so well.  She removes from her pack a tome, moldering and worn.  The drawing of the circle comes easily to her, apparently from practice.  She takes out candles black as the night, black as her dress, black as the moon, and arranges them just so.  A flick of a match, and the stars above are reflected in the candles’ flame.

For the first time in years, a slight hesitation.  “I have to know.” she mutters, working up the courage for the next, last, hardest step.  A drop of blood drips from the silver dagger, gleaming in the twin lights of candles and stars.  “What does the fox say?” she demands of the spectral apparition rising from the grave, holding out the remains of what had once been her favorite book.  But the ghost only shakes its head sadly.

17:53

An old woman is lying in bed, dying.  Her granddaughter listens raptly to a last farewell story, one she remembers fondly from her own childhood.  She reads it from a worn book.

It wasn’t easy to come by; it has been out of print for many years.  It is an old copy, worn.  She is nearing the end now.

“The cow goes, ‘Moo!’” she reads.  “The fox...”  But before she can turn the page, she passes.

“What?  What does the fox say?”

20:00
© 2018 - 2020 jdeyke
Comments3
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WindySilver's avatar
WindySilverHobbyist Writer
Nicely done with the stories! I like how each of these was part of the same storyline.
jdeyke's avatar
These may or may not have been influenced by a semi-recent song, and may or may not be based on a true story.