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Oct 25

Trapped

Trapped

Trapped

I flew along the Leech River, searching for signs of life caught in the snares hidden in the foliage along the bank. A crisp autumn breeze caught me off-guard, sending me into an airborne somersault before I righted myself and continued my quest.

The first trap I found was empty, as was the second. The third held a skinny, motionless rabbit. I flew in to take a closer look.

Asleep, it was. Pathetic looking, too. Really, how could anyone expect more than a mouthful of bones from this thing? I touched my finger to the snare, and it loosened from around the rabbit’s foot. Freed from the magic coursing through the cord, the animal roused itself and scampered back into the woods. I wasn’t certain I had done the pitiful rodent any favors; it surely would starve by the end of winter.

I passed by another empty trap and released a gamey muskrat from one more before I stumbled upon quite a surprise.

A human.

I had seen one just once before, but he had been asleep. I wondered how this one could be immune to the magic.

She tugged on the cord encircling her ankle ā€“ a useless endeavor, of course, as it was made from finely woven unicorn hair. She noticed me as I approached, and her eyes lit up with hope. I paused in mid-air for a moment, allowed her to take in my appearance, my purple gossamer wings catching the sunlight with each flutter. It calmed her, and I needed her to be calm, because I knew that one swipe of those giant hands would splinter my bones and crush the life out of me.

I flew in cautiously, then touched the cord that bound her, loosening it, giving her freedom. She nodded her thanks to me.

My stomach grumbled as she lumbered away. As I thought of the last human I had found, the delicious meat on his bones that had kept me fed the entire winter, I was tempted to sneak up on her and sink my tiny fangs into her neck. However, I couldn’t be certain the venom would act in time before she realized my intentions and dealt me a fatal blow.

She moved out of sight, safely on to her village, I supposed, and I went off to check the last of the traps. Empty. I sighed. I should have kept that nasty muskrat.

* * *

Today’s prompt comes from Nikki’s “how we met” story:

We met along the Leech River in Licking Flames County. My foot as caught in a snare and you flew in on your gossamer wings and freed me. I was amazed that such a delicate creature had the courage to free a giant like myself.

Thank you, Nikki, for the inspiration!

If you would like to be featured in one of my flash fiction stories, leave a comment telling me how you and I met — but lie. šŸ™‚ And if you enjoyed this story, please share it using the social media buttons below.

 

14 comments

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  1. Margit Sage

    Fun! I loved how you subtly moved into the supernatural.

    1. Shelli Proffitt Howells

      Thank you, Margit!

  2. Eydie

    So…you’re a fairy who eats humans? Fun read. šŸ™‚

    1. Shelli Proffitt Howells

      Only when I get lucky, Eydie. Thank you!

  3. Catherine Russell

    That was cool! I loved the way you introduced the fantastic elements, and the horrific twist that ended up being merciful… sort of. šŸ˜€

    1. Shelli Proffitt Howells

      Thank you, Catherine!

  4. Steve Green

    Very nicely written.

    She should have kept the human, winters can be long, cold, and filled with hunger.

    1. Shelli Proffitt Howells

      Thank you, Steve! Trust me, she would have, if she could have found a way. šŸ™‚

  5. Katherine Hajer

    Tee hee, I love the turnabout you put into the prompt! It’s sort of comforting to know humans taste good to someone.

    1. Shelli Proffitt Howells

      Thank you, Katherine! And I hope I never have to find out if she was right about that.

  6. richardbon

    Hmm, I wonder what this thing is? Cautious; smart enough not to take the odds on going after the human. Fun story.

    1. Shelli Proffitt Howells

      Thank you, Richard. šŸ™‚

  7. John Wiswell

    Funny to read coming off of the Last of Us hunting scene. You did a good job making me curious what was narrating at first. I bet on a tiny UFO. Though I guess the narrator was unidentified at the time.

  8. Shelli Proffitt Howells

    Knowing Nikki, I’m pretty sure I was a fairy with beautiful gossamer wings.

  1. » The #FridayFlash Report ā€“ Vol 5 Number 22

    […] Trapped by Shelli Proffitt Howells ~ @ShelliHowells ~ Between 100 and 500 words ~ Magical Realism […]

  2. Writing A New Me | Shelli Proffitt Howells

    […] I create worlds of my own to explore. When Iā€™m writing, I go beyond these four walls, and I fly over the Leech River on fairy wings. I work a whore house at the One Eyed Jacks back in the Old West. Iā€™m a ballet […]

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