Please enjoy the sample "Flash Fiction" Story below!

 

 

Trees In The Wind

by

Inge Moore

Trees in the wind dance. To their own music, the music of the wind and the wild. They billow like skirts, green and abundant. I watch them and listen. They are my solace as I remember him.

A boy with a grin. He had no idea what he did to me… the loss I endured.

So long ago we played marbles. He let me win. We climbed trees. He let me climb higher. His grin, his freckles and his red hair. My life.

Marbles. Do children even play marbles anymore or is it another game lost to the brave new world of electronics? Maybe poor children play marbles somewhere. Africa. Yes, maybe. I imagine all my old marbles shipped to the electonics-deprived children of Africa. Makes me smile.

I loved the cats’eyes most. Their ribboning centres. I’d gaze inside them at the winding, snaking colours, greens and blues, and imagine following them into worlds of delight.

His mother was pregnant and ill, so he was living with us. A monkey of a boy, always laughing and clowning.

I look at old photos of us now. Black and white, but grey mostly with sepia tones. I run my finger over his face and smile. Each image of him is blurred, me there beside him, smiling. In not one of the pictures is he holding still or even looking into the camera. He was that kind of boy.

They asked me later,“Did he ever hurt you?”

“No,” I shouted. He was my best friend, my soul mate.

It was a rainy summer’s day, the wind blowing through the trees. I yearned to sneak out of the house to the lake and swim in the thundering waves, the trees shuddering all around us.

“Come on, let’s go!” I urged.

“I want to stay here,” he answered.

I pouted. He usually did what I wanted him to, but this morning the news had come of his mother’s death. From her illness, whatever it had been. The house was full of people. Perfect, I thought. No one would notice we’d gone. His mother hadn’t been real to me. I’d never met her and knew of her only as a distant relative. I loved him, only him. He was my friend. I’d been glad she was sick for it was the reason we were thrown together.

“How come?” I prodded.

“Cause.”

“Cause why?”

“Cause I don’t want to,” he insisted, the tears squeezing from the corners of his eyes.

I studied him closely. I’d been so sure he loved me too.

“Are you sad?” I asked.

“Yes.”

“That she died?”

“Yes!” he yelled.

I wasn’t used to him yelling at me. A frown tugged at the corners of my mouth.

“But now you won’t ever have to leave!” I insisted, opening my hands before me in a gesture of explanation.

His fists flew to my chest, pounding me backwards, out of the room, the door hitting my toes as it slammed.

All hopes of the lake and trees lost, I limped to the kitchen and searched the table for something to eat. Trays of meats, cheeses and breads covered its surface like a rich quilt.

I grabbed a cracker topped with succulent red fish and stuffed it whole in my mouth, my other hand rubbing my throbbing chest. The adults milled around, talking low. A few hugged me or patted my head. My mother appeared, her dark hair a lovely frame around her face. “Where’s Mark?”she asked.

“He went in his room and pushed me out!” I complained.

“Oh dear.” We walked the long hall to his room. She opened the door, saying his name. I stood behind her green skirt. Her breath drew in -- a sharp whoosh.

I looked past her. There on the floor were five squashed hamsters, brown bloody fur crushed into the blue carpet. Beside Mark’s foot one tiny creature still squirmed its death throes. He looked down smiling. In his hands he held the mother hamster, cradling her gently as he watched her baby die.

He was gone the next day, never to return. I was back to my only-child existence. Again, I made my own fun.

Now, I watch the dancing trees and think of him. I scan the newspaper clippings spread out in my lap. The man who bludgeoned the little girl. The other who stabbed his wife. The dead body found in the woods, the killer unknown. This is my only way of searching for him.


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