The autumn chill whipped against my face as the earthy scent of fallen leaves an pine needles reached deep inside me. The wind carried on it the call of loons, dark phantoms who haunted the waters that saturated this country. Within the brush near me, something moved, then stopped as if startled by presence, and then moved again, scurrying along a hasty retreat.I was immune to the slick of blood that covered me, finger-tip-elbow. I was unstirred by the smell of the opened gut cavity that lay before more, steaming in the cool air. I was unmoved by murmur of owls gathering roundabout me in the trees, envious of my prey.Worst of all, I was uninspired by own conquest.I've never been a skilled hunter, nor an ingenious tracker. All I've ever been is a man who sought the struggle against nature, and in such the struggle against my own limitations. These were the moments at which I felt at peace, at one with myself. I was a man. I was not a particle of cosmic dust, lost in the universe. I was not a spark of light, indistinguishable against a glowing backdrop. I was not simply another part of nature's tapestry. I was a man. I was my own man. I was unique.I looked down at my prey, knowing the the owls were looking with me. I drew in a deep breath threw my nose, knowing that a coyote was probably smelling the same thing. I wiped the blood from the back of my hand across my face, tasting it, like I knew a million other predators had done before me.I felt nothing but the cold autumn air as I rose, and walked away from the farmer's body, leaving it to the rest of nature.
“Grumbling is the worst!” the old gnarled, filthy farmer yelled back to a herd of patch sewn black and white cows, “and I won’t tolerate it,” he continued to spit. His face was plump and bruised brown like that of a neglected apple. He appeared immune to the stench of rotting carcasses that filled his flat-tip shovel. Bodies of half eaten rodents and maggot-covered birds crumbled as he pushed in a persistent rhythm with his crippled limbs.“What’s that you say?” he questioned an old decrypted brown and black tabby cat that hissed and swiped at his shovel. “Just go, get out-ah-here. Shoo.” The aged farmer pulled his tattered old cowboy hat from his balding head and fanned it in front of him. “I mean it, you don’t belong here.” The cat narrowed its eyes at the farmer before meandering back to the broken down rustic barn; it knew it was too much work to gain back the treasures it patiently collected all morning.“I’m tired of cleaning up after these flea-ridden vermin,” the farmer mumbled. He knew that in a roundabout way, the grumbling cows who spoke very few words and the flea-ridden cat that could care less were his only companions. Ingenious as it may have appeared, it was in his own mind where he remained a farmer.
Nice atmosphere, de la O!
Oh, both great pieces of flash! Good job, guys!