The family sat down for Thanksgiving dinner. She had cooked quite a dinner and he had helped. Everyone was at the table and they were both carrying the dishes of food to the table when she heard a crash. She turned around and he had dropped a large bowl of mashed potatoes on the floor, splattering them everywhere. They were everyone’s favorite dish.
He smiled, walked to the table, and pointed his finger. A lightning bolt appeared and at the end, a large bowl of mashed potatoes.
She said, “Hmm, so why have I bothered cooking all these years?”
“It’s always darkest before the dawn.” That old quote popped into her head at 4 a.m. It wouldn’t be daylight soon this morning since the Earth was spinning toward the shortest day of the year. She was still awake at this ungodly hour, as she often was, yearning for the light.
She couldn’t sleep until it was daylight. The old dreams, the terrible dreams of her childhood, haunted her, and she knew she couldn’t sleep until dawn when they would subside. She remembered them when she awoke, screaming, but only for a few seconds. Only the light chased them away.
Job: Environmental and ecological freelance writer focused on climate change. Epic workplace: A house located in the woods. Connected both by wire and wirelessly to the Internet and the news channels. A powerful Mac computer and a standing desk. Subscriptions to all major research databases. Memberships to all major news organizations such as Getty. Three televisions to access the major news channels at the same time.
In today’s world, this would be my epic job and my epic workplace. A workplace where I could advocate for responsible ecological policy that would have a positive impact on slowing climate change.
In the Old Country, there existed a creature called the Dark Fairy. Ramona, a dark fairy, visited a little boy named Evan one night.
She propelled Evan outdoors and to the front of the neighbor’s house. He screamed when he saw her. She put a sock in his mouth. She told him who she was and that, when the boy inside came out, he was to hit him with a rock. The boy had bullied Evan. He couldn’t help himself. He threw the rock and hit the boy. She made Evan laugh.
They found the darkest possible spot, that night in the spring of 1997. A flat rock on a mountain top called Lochegee. They had to climb and up they went, right at dusk.
They sat and waited for this much hailed comet. They heard voices and a group of college students joined them. It seemed like a magical, almost spiritual, time, knowing the comet had been visible 4,200 years ago.
They all saw its blue-white brilliance at the same time, right above the horizon.
When they climbed down, it was in silence, knowing they had witnessed a rare and wondrous sight.
She watched him when he was a fawn. Come summer, he grew spikes. A young buck. He was unafraid of her. He grew accustomed to her apples. He came to the porch and snatched the food from her hand. She grew to love him that winter. She was alone.
The next summer, he was a four-point buck. He came to the porch. She tried to make him go away, fearful he was too accustomed to people.
It’s been ten years. An old buck comes to the porch. He takes the apples. She knows by his eyes that it’s him.
It was fall. She and her friend were going on a weekend camping trip. They pitched their small, camo-colored pup tent in the woods.
Their first morning, she started to awaken. It was still dark, but a beam of sunlight seemed to be shining into their tent. She opened her eyes and their drab tent was yellow from that sunbeam.
As she went outside, she heard a loud, booming gunshot and felt a bullet whizzing by her ear. The hunter ran up to her and said, “Thank goodness your tent is yellow! I would have accidentally shot you otherwise.”
Every morning when she took her walk, she passed beside an old, weathered board fence. It didn’t seem to hold anything. No horses, no other livestock, not even a house. Every third or fourth board was missing.
She didn’t know why she came this way. She thought of her family each time she saw that old fence. The family that didn’t want her anymore. The family that was gone, that had left her alone. The family that didn’t care now.
Her feelings for them were gone. They’d slipped away like the wind slipped through the gaps in the fence.
Carrot Ranch prompt:
July 12, 2018, prompt: In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story about a broken fence. You can mend it, leave it, or explain its place in a story. Go where the prompt leads.