*So here is the story this week. This one just goes to show that you sometimes really have no control over what hits the paper. When I sat down to write today I was thinking about writing about some outcast kid on a basketball court. Then this happened. I didn’t quite make the word count but sometimes stories just end when they end. Enjoy.*
Word Count: 860
Writing: 59 mins.
Editing: 21 mins.
Total Time: 1 hr 20 mins.
The rainbow sky was getting duller by the day, and there were precious few of them left. Squagglmerre stared into the distance with his back against the candy cane tree. He cried, sometimes in small sobs, others just silent tears. There was a time not so long ago when crying—the terrible water that flowed from one's eyes when bad things happened—was something only heard of in the tales and old fables. Squagglmerre had never understood how these “tears” could hurt a living creature; but he knew the pain all too well now. The pain that forced the wicked salty tears to the surface of his eyes and out onto his cheek. And of course they were salty, why wouldn't they be in a place that was full of sweets and happy things. But it wasn't that place anymore, it hadn't been since the war started. The Candyrainbowllia he had known his whole life was gone.
Squagglmerre tried not to think about all the friends and family he'd lost in the beginning. But now he found the ghosts kept him company, his very own guardian angels. After all he was still alive, the last creature he knew, and hadn't they called him “the brave.” He chuckled at the name. Who would've thought Scaredy Wittle Sqiugglpants, a term of endearment his older brother frequently used when they were children, could grow up to be Squagglmerre the Brave.
The sun's were setting over Sweetmilkwater Valley and Squagglmerre thought more and more about his brother Mashubapoppin. There was a day when they were children, before they'd even grown into their long floppy ears and wide eyes, when they snuck away from school and ran to the Candy Cane Forest. For hours they played, hiding and seeking. Stopping to break off bits of the sweet and rich tree branches, eating until their lips were coated in a sugary glaze. Finally, after much running and pounds of candy they sat with their backs against a tree.
“What if mom finds out?” Squagglmerre asked his older brother.
“Don't even worry about that, I got your back pal,” and he always had. Protecting him right up until his very last breath.
Squagglmerre cried harder the more he thought about his brother. He wished the blurred image of the scorched valley ahead were a dream. That this wholesome place he and Mashubapoppin used to play and escape the world for a while to, didn't now house his older brother's body in it's sweet soil.
In stories the action would always take a long time, sometimes pages after pages; but in real life it wasn't slow or long at all. Fighting wasn't beautifully described like it was in the books, it was grotesque and bloody. And in an instant everything you knew could be gone.
The final battle didn't come slowly, it exploded on the two brothers in the blink of an eye. Mashubapoppin had been ready, Squagglmerre had not. They'd stopped to build camp for the evening, Squagglemerre was to watch the area and begin setting up their shelter while Mashubapoppin retrieved supplies for the fire. He decided to sit for a moment after his older brother disappeared into the woods, it felt like they had been walking for days. Before he knew it, he was snoring loudly, dreaming of sweets and games.
He heard his name being called loudly and the rustle of fighting before he was even fully awake. Squagglmerre opened his eyes just in time to see his brother, standing between him and four advancing soldiers, fall to the ground as what they called “bullets” ripped through his body. Squagglmerre screamed and raised his enchanted candy cane shield, sending more bullets ricocheting in all directions. He fought quickly and fiercely and after he had slayed each soldier he ran to his brother.
Squagglmerre shook his head and pushed the memory to the depths of his mind. He wished he could go back, back to when it all started. It seemed like they could have reached some sort of agreement, maybe they could have helped each other. Anything was better than this. The scorched land covered with the bodies of creatures who not so long ago were frolicking and playing in a place where the rainbow sky never lost it's color. A magical land where creatures of all kind lived in harmony and crying was a frightening detail in deranged stories that were meant to scare children.
That place was long gone. The worst part was, they probably could have just taken it without the killing. The inhabitants of Candyrainbowlia didn't even use the ore they now mined from land. If only he could go back to the beginning, maybe even before, and find the first one. The first of the “humans” who figured out how to access their planet, and stop it all from ever starting.
The sun's were almost down in the sky and Squagglmerre's eyelids began to give out. The thought of killing the first human intruder on his homeland made the corner's of his mouth twitch upward slightly, and sent him off to sleep.