The soldiers made him pull the trigger, bury a bullet in his mother’s forehead, watch his village burn.
Some day, he thought, I’ll kiss a girl and see skyscrapers.
His knees collided with now-sacred ground. He gagged on the ashes of his soul.
Through smoky tears, he prayed. Some day.
Salena Casha’s work has appeared or is forthcoming in Stymie Magazine, Bete Noire, The Quotable, Silver Blade and others. Follow her on twitter @salaylay_c.
I escape the house and run, crying, into the backyard. Examining hand-shaped bruises on my small body, I notice an anthill. Yesterday, I watched these ants a long time. Today is different. Raging, I stomp the anthill flat. Ants scurry in panic and writhe in pain.
It doesn’t help much.
Sam Gem is a writer of flash fiction, short stories, and maybe a novel someday. He resides in upstate New York.
She heard the saw cease its whirring.
Her love stomped in, dewdrops of sweat lining his creased forehead, clutching a crude cedar carving of a heart.
He had suffered so much, and still laboured under the weight of the memories, but today, it seemed, his stomps fell a little lighter.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
This story is based on a title suggested by @PoshPlatypus.
“Ow! Oooooow!! Ouch! Ooh… Aah… Huuuaaaah… OH!! Woooow… Whoa! Aaaah! It burns! Eeeeek! Aaaaargh! Nyyyuuuurrgh… WWWAAAAAAAAUUGHH!! Hoooly mother of painburgersssss… GRROOOOAARGH IT HURTS SO BAAAAD!! No, why, why!?!? Ooow!! Never again! I swear on your grandmother’s grave if you ever even BHAAAAAUGH!!! OW OW OW!!”
“…I said I was sorry.”