A Different Leg Laughter rose upon the light beats of butterfly wings and carried across the lily pads in the early morning hush of the pleasantly wet spring. The weather tossed the night previous and now the ground was mush and mud. Perfect weather for racing. Myn Mold and Gary Jaes, snails of the first class, i.e. racers, were just turning down the length on the home stretch. A wet leaf covered the course and the two left glowing slicks behind. Old slug, Fo’metar, sat quietly by the finish line, listlessly waving his flagpole. He had not even noticed that a leaf-eater ant had taken the marker. The two racers flew across the leaf and crossed the finish neck to neck. “Who won, Fo?” Myn Mold asked, blowing bellows. “I did,” retorted Gary Jaes in a rush. “Did not.” “Did too.” Both: “Tell him, Uncle Fo!” Fo’metar just looked from one young snail to the next and said: “You finished at the same time.” Two astounded snails stared back. “That’s impossible.” “You must have blinked, Fo.” “We all run this race.” Fo’metar said, lifting his antennae towards the sun. “No one wins.” Two astounded snails stared then began yelling one after the other: “There’s a winner!” “Why would there be a race without a winner?” “You were just not watching. Admit it.” “Fo, we’re racing snails. It’s what we do.” Both said together: “Race.” Fo’metar dropped the pole without a flag and started out into the brightening day. The two racers watched, worried. “Where you going, Fo?” “Uncle, come back.” Both said: “You’ll catch the heaves and dryness.” And both called “Come back!” “I got one last race in me,” Fo’metar said. “You’re not a racing snail, Fo.” Gary Jaes hung his body dejectedly. “There a race then there’s the race. No one said this which was run. I’m going now, boys: to the rolling laps of water. I’ll sit awhile, till they’re still.” The two racing snails gave up racing and settled down to have large families. Occasionally they would both go out to sit, listening to the lapping of the lilies. —mob #flashfiction 350 words
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More from a_mobius_sideways

Flames roiled from under the hood. Paint cooked at the searing touch of burning fuel. The battery detonated in a shower of bright sparks, opening a hole in the dying jeep.   Darrel fought to draw clean air through the acrid smoke.    A tongue of fire erupted through the passenger door, licking wildly, melting the vinyl and plastic. The world exploded. Blackness.   Pain skated on his nerves. Fists of nausea pummeled his stomach and his breath came in short, shaking gasps.    He was alive, he knew. Dead people didn't feel pain, or fear, or loneliness.   He strained, listening, hoping someone might have discovered the crash. All he heard was the pop and crackle of something burning in the darkness. The smell of bacon made his mouth water. Sick rose in his mouth. He sobbed. Stomach acid burned in his nose and throat.    He forced his eyes open. A blurry world surrounded him. His head throbbed. He blinked forcing thick discharge from his eyes.    The fog faded. Darrel saw the extent of the damage.   Flames burned all around him. Twisted metal and the day’s deliveries lay beneath the morning sun.    He strained his neck to see the extent of the wreckage scattered around him. It felt as if a heavy weight sat on his chest and he could not move his arms or legs. He imagined the worst; that he was broken, paralyzed for the rest of his natural life. He could learn to live with that… if he lived.   He heard a rustling, a clang of metal on metal just beyond where he lay. He turned his head in the direction of the noise. An old woman with long locks of scraggy gray hair and layer upon layer of ragged miss-matched clothes poked around and pushed at the wreckage with a booted foot. Her craggy face lit up in delight and revealed brown jagged teeth in a broken smile when she found a small souvenir in the wreckage. She knelt and tugged at a box crushed beneath the spare tire. She flustered and cussed and strained. Once free she tore it open and examined the contents with a critical eye.   Satisfied, she added the items to the layers of clothing on her body. She continued collecting as much as she could from the scattered mail.   "Help," Darrel said.   The old woman's head spun fixing a hard glare on him. Seeing her alien features fully for the first time made him cringe.   “Help."   The old woman smiled broadly revealing dying teeth behind cracked lips.    Darrel shuddered at the sight. Though old and frail, there was something underneath. Something energetic and evil.   She stepped carefully through the wreckage. Her eyes scanned over him and her broken smile broadened.    "You seem to of gotten yourself into a little bit of a mess," she said.   Darrel managed a small panicked whimper.   "You are beyond my help, little human."   Darrel wanted to shout, but only managed a single weak word.    “Please.”   “There isn’t really enough of you left help."  She reached down and lifted something. Darrel stared, Eyes wide. She held his severed arm in one twisted hand and his wallet in the other.    "This is just the piece I could reach.”   "Oh God," he cried. "Please kill me!"   "Oh I am sorry, but you're going to live forever, Darrel. Time to wake up."   Darkness took his mind…   #weeklywritingcontest @danielandangel
77 views · Feb 18th
Desire The afternoon haze stood borderless. Golden expanse of sand played out endlessly, broken only by a dotted spot soon washed away with ever-shifting winds. Here, at the edge of life. Here, at the end of reason. Here, in played out sandals and broken clothes. Here, walked a man through sliding sands. Endlessly. Too broken to stride one popping step outside his ever-slowing route between three watering holes. Oases. But not one oasis held a drop enough the quench his thirst. Walk, dig, taste of sand, spit of grit and on back to walking. A circle of shadow dancing between oasis. The rain of some long forgot, perhaps unknown season lay in quiet evidence of curled sparkling balls of salt. Bones of some once healthy beast jabbed up like forests of a single tree full of glistening dew, jabbed for a time and turned down, like the tilling of a farmer’s patch, just without… everything. Sounds carried infinitely but went nowhere, covered by all the other sounds. Small, slithering sounds add bellows of confusion, masking words said and grand tales of worthy deeds. Deeds of pirates, humble men and noble rogues went into the churning shushing of the sands, forever nothings. To walk is to live and die. The man dropped to his knees and started digging. Handful by handful he cast the sand aside. Once, it fooled him and ran down into his excavation, but he carefully continued to dig. Placing sand from his path, the man went down until the sand turned hard, almost cool. Pulling his tattered shirt from his browned and cracked flesh, the man pushed the garment flat against the little hole. Water rose, thimble-sized. Brackish cruel water that stung the lips. “Now that’s a living,” the man laughed and the wind shifted, killing the sound. —mob #flashfiction 300 words, topic Heat #WeeklyWritingContest @danielandangel
271 views · Feb 17th

I want to sit on the couch and binge all the seasons of a good show. One that makes me laugh, one that doesn't let me think too much until it's time for bed. I just want to get lost in a good book and get inside someone else's head. But tears, until the melatonin kicks in, blur the words of the book I set down. I sink into my pillow and fall fast asleep before I can possibly think about all the things I really need to say to the two people who have become nothing but strangers and sources of pain in my life and I don't know what is more painful, them not knowing anything about me or them believing that they know all about me and I don't want to bring anybody any pain and it won't make any difference if I even tried to explain myself to them because they would only hear what they already know. They're acting like this divorce is a funeral, like it was my fault because of my "attitude" and that I should go seek therapy to deal with my issues. They aren't happy that I'm becoming independent and choosing better things for myself and choosing freedom over being a slave to somebody else's addictions. They don't care to hear that the reason I settled for such a toxic relationship was only because it was so familiar and that in many ways it was not nearly as bad as what I had already known. They don't trust a word from me because I don't think Donald Trump is Hitler and because I know masks are retarded and now they got the stupid vaccine because they lost their fucking minds and I'm supposed to engage with them somehow as they tell me they made pizza for dinner on a cauliflower crust, topped with eggplant and sprinkled with a dusting of parmesan, barely a dash, hardly any at all, an apologetically scant, trace amount of parmesan cheese. I'm so pissed at their obedience. My dad named me Cassandra, so he'd never have to listen to a word from me. Not a word is heard. His Nazi doctor he trusts. CNN he trusts. Stupid fucking, impman Fauci and pedo Woody Allen Gates he trusts. He trusts little Greta Not-So-Funberg over his own daughter. You'd think having been familiar with how Troy ended up, he would know to trust someone named Cassandra. It's hard to get out of a loop if you don't know you're in it. It's hard to get out regardless. But the water's nice. Isn't it? Maybe, just a little too much heat. Don't you think? (I mean seriously, don't you think? Don't you think?) Image: le monde renait by veroklotz at DeviantArt #flashfiction, topic Heat #WeeklyWriting Contest @danielandangel

70 views · Feb 17th

More from a_mobius_sideways

Flames roiled from under the hood. Paint cooked at the searing touch of burning fuel. The battery detonated in a shower of bright sparks, opening a hole in the dying jeep.   Darrel fought to draw clean air through the acrid smoke.    A tongue of fire erupted through the passenger door, licking wildly, melting the vinyl and plastic. The world exploded. Blackness.   Pain skated on his nerves. Fists of nausea pummeled his stomach and his breath came in short, shaking gasps.    He was alive, he knew. Dead people didn't feel pain, or fear, or loneliness.   He strained, listening, hoping someone might have discovered the crash. All he heard was the pop and crackle of something burning in the darkness. The smell of bacon made his mouth water. Sick rose in his mouth. He sobbed. Stomach acid burned in his nose and throat.    He forced his eyes open. A blurry world surrounded him. His head throbbed. He blinked forcing thick discharge from his eyes.    The fog faded. Darrel saw the extent of the damage.   Flames burned all around him. Twisted metal and the day’s deliveries lay beneath the morning sun.    He strained his neck to see the extent of the wreckage scattered around him. It felt as if a heavy weight sat on his chest and he could not move his arms or legs. He imagined the worst; that he was broken, paralyzed for the rest of his natural life. He could learn to live with that… if he lived.   He heard a rustling, a clang of metal on metal just beyond where he lay. He turned his head in the direction of the noise. An old woman with long locks of scraggy gray hair and layer upon layer of ragged miss-matched clothes poked around and pushed at the wreckage with a booted foot. Her craggy face lit up in delight and revealed brown jagged teeth in a broken smile when she found a small souvenir in the wreckage. She knelt and tugged at a box crushed beneath the spare tire. She flustered and cussed and strained. Once free she tore it open and examined the contents with a critical eye.   Satisfied, she added the items to the layers of clothing on her body. She continued collecting as much as she could from the scattered mail.   "Help," Darrel said.   The old woman's head spun fixing a hard glare on him. Seeing her alien features fully for the first time made him cringe.   “Help."   The old woman smiled broadly revealing dying teeth behind cracked lips.    Darrel shuddered at the sight. Though old and frail, there was something underneath. Something energetic and evil.   She stepped carefully through the wreckage. Her eyes scanned over him and her broken smile broadened.    "You seem to of gotten yourself into a little bit of a mess," she said.   Darrel managed a small panicked whimper.   "You are beyond my help, little human."   Darrel wanted to shout, but only managed a single weak word.    “Please.”   “There isn’t really enough of you left help."  She reached down and lifted something. Darrel stared, Eyes wide. She held his severed arm in one twisted hand and his wallet in the other.    "This is just the piece I could reach.”   "Oh God," he cried. "Please kill me!"   "Oh I am sorry, but you're going to live forever, Darrel. Time to wake up."   Darkness took his mind…   #weeklywritingcontest @danielandangel
77 views · Feb 18th
Desire The afternoon haze stood borderless. Golden expanse of sand played out endlessly, broken only by a dotted spot soon washed away with ever-shifting winds. Here, at the edge of life. Here, at the end of reason. Here, in played out sandals and broken clothes. Here, walked a man through sliding sands. Endlessly. Too broken to stride one popping step outside his ever-slowing route between three watering holes. Oases. But not one oasis held a drop enough the quench his thirst. Walk, dig, taste of sand, spit of grit and on back to walking. A circle of shadow dancing between oasis. The rain of some long forgot, perhaps unknown season lay in quiet evidence of curled sparkling balls of salt. Bones of some once healthy beast jabbed up like forests of a single tree full of glistening dew, jabbed for a time and turned down, like the tilling of a farmer’s patch, just without… everything. Sounds carried infinitely but went nowhere, covered by all the other sounds. Small, slithering sounds add bellows of confusion, masking words said and grand tales of worthy deeds. Deeds of pirates, humble men and noble rogues went into the churning shushing of the sands, forever nothings. To walk is to live and die. The man dropped to his knees and started digging. Handful by handful he cast the sand aside. Once, it fooled him and ran down into his excavation, but he carefully continued to dig. Placing sand from his path, the man went down until the sand turned hard, almost cool. Pulling his tattered shirt from his browned and cracked flesh, the man pushed the garment flat against the little hole. Water rose, thimble-sized. Brackish cruel water that stung the lips. “Now that’s a living,” the man laughed and the wind shifted, killing the sound. —mob #flashfiction 300 words, topic Heat #WeeklyWritingContest @danielandangel
271 views · Feb 17th

I want to sit on the couch and binge all the seasons of a good show. One that makes me laugh, one that doesn't let me think too much until it's time for bed. I just want to get lost in a good book and get inside someone else's head. But tears, until the melatonin kicks in, blur the words of the book I set down. I sink into my pillow and fall fast asleep before I can possibly think about all the things I really need to say to the two people who have become nothing but strangers and sources of pain in my life and I don't know what is more painful, them not knowing anything about me or them believing that they know all about me and I don't want to bring anybody any pain and it won't make any difference if I even tried to explain myself to them because they would only hear what they already know. They're acting like this divorce is a funeral, like it was my fault because of my "attitude" and that I should go seek therapy to deal with my issues. They aren't happy that I'm becoming independent and choosing better things for myself and choosing freedom over being a slave to somebody else's addictions. They don't care to hear that the reason I settled for such a toxic relationship was only because it was so familiar and that in many ways it was not nearly as bad as what I had already known. They don't trust a word from me because I don't think Donald Trump is Hitler and because I know masks are retarded and now they got the stupid vaccine because they lost their fucking minds and I'm supposed to engage with them somehow as they tell me they made pizza for dinner on a cauliflower crust, topped with eggplant and sprinkled with a dusting of parmesan, barely a dash, hardly any at all, an apologetically scant, trace amount of parmesan cheese. I'm so pissed at their obedience. My dad named me Cassandra, so he'd never have to listen to a word from me. Not a word is heard. His Nazi doctor he trusts. CNN he trusts. Stupid fucking, impman Fauci and pedo Woody Allen Gates he trusts. He trusts little Greta Not-So-Funberg over his own daughter. You'd think having been familiar with how Troy ended up, he would know to trust someone named Cassandra. It's hard to get out of a loop if you don't know you're in it. It's hard to get out regardless. But the water's nice. Isn't it? Maybe, just a little too much heat. Don't you think? (I mean seriously, don't you think? Don't you think?) Image: le monde renait by veroklotz at DeviantArt #flashfiction, topic Heat #WeeklyWriting Contest @danielandangel

70 views · Feb 17th