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20 Word Poem
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My Faith
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Deadline: Oct 31st


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 Category:  Horror and Thriller Fiction
  Posted: May 13, 2020      Views: 80

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A career banker seeking to find redemption in words as against numbers.

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198 words
"Passing the baton" by Praveen J.

I usually do not forget to draw the curtains in my bedroom. But last night, coming back from Gustavo's funeral, I was understandably maudlin. I remember gulping a few glasses of wine before retiring. The window overlooks our olive orchard which Gustavo used to manage. He was funny and charming, in an earthy sort of way. When I was small, he would tell me stories about each tree as if they were his family. He pointed out his stooped parents, countless siblings, uncles, aunts, a wife and two mistresses. They all had eccentric personalities and he had this odd habit of whispering to them every night. I would see him hobbling, tree to tree, caressing the gnarled trunks. Sometimes we would deposit chopped earthworms at the base of each tree. They would wriggle till morning.
I woke up, drenched in sweat, with an uneasy feeling of being watched. The condensation on the window gave an eerie red glow to the moonlight. My breath froze when I found that the red glow came from bleeding, writhing earthworm bits stuck to the pane. Steadying myself, I went closer to peer, only to find Gustavo's shadow gazing back at me.

Horror writing prompt entry

Writing Prompt
Write a short flash fiction story between 100 to 200 words based on the themes specified in contest details.

Author Notes
Certain ancient shamanic traditions involve worshiping trees since they like other living creatures are said to have a life force or a soul, if you will. Making bloodied sacrifices to the roots of fruit bearing trees is also part of arcane fertility rites. Gustavo wanted someone to look after his tree-family after he was gone. He chose me.
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