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Fiction Friday–“The Bone Eater”

I wasn’t going to do the flash fiction contest this week over at Indies Unlimited, but I got a last-minute inspiration from the “Raspberry Delight” prompt:

chipmunk-300x240

“Wilbur the chipmunk loves raspberries. Unfortunately, the best berries are on the bush up by the woman’s house.

That is also where the cat lives. The cat does not eat raspberries, but he would like to eat chipmunks.

Wilbur thinks he is too fast for that old cat, but the cat has a new strategy…”

 

I tied for first, but since I got mine at the last minute, first place goes to the well-deserved entry from K.L. Kelso.

That frees mine up to post here. “The Bone Eater” is what I came up with.

 

The Bone Eater

The scraping again, of blade against bone, cleaves me from sleep. My tail twitches. The bone eater stalks my nights. Tonight I shall silence it.

I stare into darkness toward the grating sound. I’ve yet to see him, and in the space of the unknown, my imagination has erected a monstrosity.

Yet, sometimes truth is more terrible than the unknown. Dare I take that risk?

He taunts me from the raspberry bushes. I slip through the tangle of brush. My heart beats a ruckus in my chest. 

A rustle. I spin toward it and a raspberry cane lashes my face. I flatten myself on damp soil. My breath roars in my ears. Surely the bone eater hears it too.

A shriek. Teeth stained with old gore hurtle toward me and latches onto my leg. I jerk back, but he gouges off a shank of fur.

Twigs splinter. He pounces again. Pain erupts in my side. I suck in my breath but the stench of decay swamps my lungs. A shadow with fangs rips at my underbelly. I kick out, flail. By luck alone, my puny claws pierce his hide, tear from it another shriek—and blood. 

I roll away. He doesn’t pursue. He sags into himself.    

Dizzy with victory, I drop into a boneless sleep.

#

The next morning, I rise triumphant.  As I emerge from the brush, I stumble across a dead rodent reeking of the bone eater. Pitiful thing. His last conquest before being himself conquered. By me.

 

 

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