Don’t Go Naked Into the Woods

Drip drip. That sound. Drip drip. Again! I tore through the house in search of silence and stumbled across a severed head.

“Who put that head in my front vestibule? Don’t they know I’ll have to run through the woods naked now?”

The thought stopped me in my tracks. “Oh. They do know. Very clever. I suppose the answer will be resting under a maple tree. Probably the murder weapon, too.”

I glanced around my family manor, hesitating. I’d just put on the kettle, ready to settle into my comfy chair with the shredded backrest—blasted cat—and while away with a bookish evening.

Oh well. Off came my clothes, and I swear I heard the squirrels laughing. “Get your own nuts!” I had a quick scamper through the woods, cursing the foul weather as I completed the circuit.

Next, the murderers. Wouldn’t you know it, the blasted sky decided to let loose its full bladder. I love being deluged with cloud pee. Now I’d have to sing “Land of the Silver Birch” at the top of my lungs. They’d hear me coming a mile away!

Where would they hide? The river. I bolted east, searching for damp grass or footprints in flight.

Footprints! Of a rabbit. Failure. “Don’t forget to stamp five times.”

There. Twenty paces to the right. Damp, flattened grass. He was waiting in the hollow. Gilbert. My brother. “Murderer!” I screamed.

He looked at me and smiled, knowing my superstitions would bring me out naked. “Did your ratty old teddy bear have an accident?”


Copyright © 2015 by Emily Clayton
Originally appeared on Flash!Friday:

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