It’s kind of funny that I never got around to posting this yesterday or the day before, considering the paragraph I had written talked all about how the midnight Avengers showing really didn’t get me off track or out of the loop as much as I thought it would, and then, next thing I know, I haven’t actually written the flash fiction and it’s time to go to work. Granted, I don’t think that’s a sign of my schedule being off, but rather another sign that things are on the same track as before. Because that’s the sort of thing I do all the time. And here I am, two days later, sitting on a post I meant to get done on Friday and am forcing myself to finish today. Because as soon as I get this posted, I break the cycle of Fail and start getting on track again.
The Avengers, by the way, was awesome. I did fall asleep at one point, but that had more to do with the fact that it was way late for me than anything to do with the movie. Once my friend nudged me back into the world, though, I was on the edge of my seat until the end. I was able to sleep in a little the next day, and then this morning, I’m back to my regular schedule, so things were blissfully not overturned. I even had a spectacular day at work following it. Rock.
Anyway, today’s going to be a day-late, dollar-short flash fiction that I intended to do both Friday and Saturday, but serves well today so I don’t have to think of something else to write about. Besides, I’m thinking I’ll skip the RoW80 check-in today, because I don’t have a whole lot to check in about. Sometimes, you just have to revel in a little bit of laziness. I’ve also updated my Featured Story, this one another tale from Bowlful of Bunnies that was created thanks to a contest run by Morgan Dragonwillow a while back.
As usual, my picture comes from the fantastic photography site, PhotoBotos and will prompt a short blurb of a story. Here goes:
Shuichi climbed the gentle sloping hill, ducking his head to slip under the wide reach of the branches of the tree that perched atop it. Instantly, he was transported into a different world, out of the lush green of the garden that surrounded it and into the rose-colored shelter of the Bleeding Tree. It was cool and peaceful; he could still hear the breeze stirring the leaves, the nearby stream babbling as it pushed over rocks and around corners, but the sounds were muted, distant, another world away. The atmosphere was intensely private, and that sent a shock of excitement and privilege through his strong limbs.
“Setsuna.” Though there were few in these private gardens, he felt the need to whisper, as though anything louder than a breath would insult the gods of this place. “Are you here, Setsuna?”
From behind the base of the tree, a figure moved, stepping forward as if emerging from the bark itself. The kimono Setsuna wore made her seem like a spirit of the tree itself, all knotted brown with bursts of red leaves and she smiled serenely at Shuichi, her dark eyes glittering. “Shuichi,” she said, her voice like windchime dancing up his spine, “how good of you to come.”
“Of course,” he said, bowing reverently to her and trying to keep his smile in check, but when he gazed on that sweet, round face, he could not help expressing his happiness and his honor. “What a beautiful place. I would not have even known it existed if you had not told me about it.”
“So I don’t suppose,” she asked, tilting her head to one side before her eyes drifted up into the red canopy over their heads, “you know why they call this the Bleeding Tree?”
“I can only assume,” he said, “that it gets its name from these vibrant leaves. Why, even while everything else is so green with the budding of new beginnings, it is a bright and red as ripe cherries or freshly fallen blood.”
“Yes,” Setsuna nodded. “But do you know how the leave stay so red?”
Shuichi didn’t know, and he was opening his mouth to respond as much, but the glint in her eyes had shifted, down, transferred to the glint of a small blade removed from the wide sleeves of her kimono. A glint that disappeared very quickly after the blade had been buried into the soft meat of his stomach. He opened his mouth again, this time for air, but each attempt failed, gaping like a koi in a pond. She pulled out the blade and he sunk to his knees, watching the drops of his blood splatter on the green grass, looking like so many bursts of red, red leaves above him.
There you have it! What have you got? I love seeing the prompts inspire others, too, so, if you want to take up the challenge, let’s see what you’ve got! And, until next time, space cowboys, happy writing and thanks for stopping in!
A big thank you to Robin Coyle (she of posting a lot of really cool furniture. Some other stuff, too, but I love the furniture posts!) and MonaD’E for following the blog! Welcome aboard, guys! Great to have you here!