The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
In the beginning, she sat alone with the tree.
It had been a sapling then, a mere twig of what it grew to be, and the world had been quiet. Together, they watched the sun—Helios’ chariot—rise in the morning and set in the evening. Life had been peaceful, life had been good.
Until cracks in her tranquillity let in strife. It began with her rebellious children, never satisfied, always bickering and killing. Then came the humans with their wars and their progress, driving the gods back into oblivion. All the constant discord brought noise, chaos, and worst of all, watered her tree in blood. She tried to ignore it, faded into the ether as human cities built around her, but it all ate at her, all nurtured her growing tree in bile and bedlam. Now here, centuries later, she knew the consequences of her inaction, of her disregard for the noise and death.
The tree was dying.
Gaia sighed, and finally rose, her form casting a shadow over the world. A choice must be made, between her tree and the humans. She took her knife from her belt. The humans would have to go.
Fiction © Copyright A.F. Stewart
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More from A.F. Stewart:
To act with abandon, in any sense of the word, is human. Whether it’s the sudden, strong urge to do something, either good or bad, or the act of betraying someone you love, we make choices that forever change our lives. Do you give into something or someone completely, or withdraw wholly into yourself? These thirteen stories run the gamut of emotions and express horror as you’ve never imagined it.
The story of a woman alone at the end of the world and the small lifeline she hopes will prove humanity still exists challenges the search for anything left behind after the death of a child. What if you hid a secret you’d thought no one else knew? Would its revelation spark the monster hiding within? A downward spiral into madness juxtaposes the ultimate, but impossible, (re)birth. Would you choose the frigid winds of winter over the warmth and safety of your lover’s arms?
Abandon hope, all who enter here…