This must be the latest ever I’ve posted a story for Friday Fictioneers. Maddeningly, I have had to write the story twice, having lost a first version in the digital ether. I don’t expect any fellow friday fictioneer to read this, but I’m determined to publish and be damned.
For the record, every Friday writers worldwide gather round the virtual fireside of Rochelle Wisoff and share stories of 100 words, prompted by a common photograph, and exchange constructive criticism. You don’t have to write to read. Click on the blue frog at the end of my story to access all the other stories written to this week’s prompt. Readers’ comments are welcome.
This week’s photo prompt is courtesy Erin Leary. Thanks, Erin. Here’s the story your photo inspired:
The Elfin Ladder
“Look, fairy tables!”
“Agaricus arvensis, darling – horse mushrooms.”
“Safe to eat?”
“If they smell of aniseed.”
“Look, an elfin ladder!”
He looked. At regular intervals, from base to canopy, tongue-shaped brackets of beefsteak fungus runged the trunk of an ancient chestnut. Within, mycelium fingers choked the life from the tree. He should have told her, chose instead to watch the life of the forest mirrored back from her slanting eyes.
They made camp, dined on mushrooms fragranced with aniseed. Later, he looked into her mirrors and watched two figures, clothed only in forest, mount the elfin ladder and disappear.