My first ever attempt at flash fiction is inspired by Chuck Wendig at Terrible Minds. From "Kids Say the Darnderniest Things", I choose my title from a selection of quotes from (what Chuck describes as) his son's completely random shit.
Length: 1000 words-ish Due by: Friday, May 27th, noon EST
“There’s a three-headed flying werewolf in that tree” drawled Donnie. It being 7pm on a Friday night after a long week of work, I just murmured “Yah-huh” and went on drinking my beer. Donnie and me, we were stood outside as per, making the most of the early summer sunshine. That first cold beer was going down real well.
Donnie disappeared indoors but was soon back, carrying two new cold ones. I nodded my thanks and went on thinking ‘bout that girl I liked and whether she’d be there tomorrow night, when my mind snapped back to that werewolf thing Donnie’d said. “Which tree?” I asked. He gave me that look which said, ‘oh so now I have your attention, gee thanks’ and pointed over to the corner with his bottle.
I looked and looked, but couldn’t make out any kind of werewolf, let alone one with three heads and wings. So I moved over to stand behind Donnie and that’s when I saw it. I rubbed my eyes and looked again, yup, there was no doubting that it looked like a three-headed werewolf with wings up in that tree. I don’t know what I’d have called it if Donnie hadn’t have named it, but I guess he’d been staring at that tree for longer ‘n me and he’d had plenty of time to figure it out.
I scratched my head and asked Donnie “did you see it land?” “Nope, it was already there when I came outside” he replied. “I didn’t spot it until after I’d finished the first beer. When I came back, I had to move over a bit ‘cos the sun was catching my eye and that’s when I spottedit.” “You seen anything like it before” says I and that’s when Donnie told me this story.
When Donnie was a kid, his Dad still lived at home. Apparently he was an old soak, but he spun great yarns, so Donnie’s Mum left them together whilst she cooked or did housework. Donnie’s Dad told all kinds of tales - cowboys and indians, cops and robbers, spacemen and aliens. Donnie liked to sit and draw pictures whilst his Dad told the stories. He usually didn’t get to finish them as his Mum would come and take him for his bath and bedtime. But he’d sit down the next day and finish them up. They’d get stuck onto the fridge door until the next one was ready. His Mum was real sweet like that.
One night Donnie’s Dad told him a new story. The type of story he’d never told Donnie before. It was a story about a wolf. In fact, it was the story of a werewolf. A werewolf with three heads, one who could fly. Donnie laughed and laughed. He called his Dad a “silly billy” and told him there was no such thing. But his Dad went all quiet and insisted there was. “What’s more” says his Dad, “one day, you’ll see it too”. As usual, Donnie sat down and started his drawing, but that night his Mum called him early for bath and bed. The next day after school, he took out his crayons and finished his drawing, which his Mum stuck on the fridge, as usual. That night, there'd been no story from his Dad who wasn't home, but Donnie heard him come home later, falling down and crying.
In the morning, Mum was sat by Donnie’s bedside. She waited till he was properly awake and then told him that Dad wasn’t coming home again. In a small voice, Donnie asked “is Dad dead, Mum?” But she told him “no, he’s just gone and he won’t be coming home again.” Donnie cried then and couldn’t stop until his Mum held him tight in a huge hug. She told Donnie that they’d be fine together, just the two of them and they had to understand that his Dad wasn’t a well man and he needed to get away by himself.
Donnie stayed home from school that day and he noticed that his drawing wasn’t on the fridge anymore. So, that night, as she was tucking Donnie in to bed, he asked whether he’d done anything to make his Dad leave them. That was when his Mum shed a few tears. “Oh dear me, no my lovely. ‘Twas nothing you did. He saw something that scared him and he ran away.” Donnie whispered “was it a three-headed flying werewolf that scared my Dad?” His Mum smiled through her tears “no silly, that was just one of his stories.”
But now Donnie could see one, up in the tree - and he wondered and he worried. We stood outside, taking it in turns to get fresh beers. We drank our beers, talking quietly about this 'n that, until it got dark. Then we got two torches and shone them up into that tree. We couldn’t see anything up there, so I reckon we’d stood firm against that damned werewolf. He didn’t get to move us on, not like he’d done to Donnie’s Dad.