Tag Archives: The-Forestal

Flash fiction – The Forestal

I don’t often get ideas for flash fiction pieces, but the prompt on Indies Unlimited sparked something in my brain today. I think it was the combination of gruesome and extraordinary that did it. 

You can find the picture, and the prompt here :

http://www.indiesunlimited.com/2013/09/07/flash-fiction-challenge-the-headsmans-block/

The IU flash fiction contests are open to everyone so if the prompt inspires you, give it a whirl. Just remember, it cannot be more than 500 250 words!

For those who are interested, this is what I came up with. Enjoy.

The Forestal

James Bolger thought of himself as a Forestal. He rarely came into the burgeoning timber town at the edge of the great forest, and when he did, it was only to harangue the townspeople about the trees.

The townspeople did not listen. Why would they? To them the forest was just a resource. When the loggers marked a new tree for felling,  they saw only fine timber, nothing more.

After a while, James Bolger stopped going into town entirely, but he made his presence felt in other ways. He set traps around the marked trees. Some would swing an unwary logger high into the air, to dangle by one foot until someone cut him down. Others broke limbs. None were designed to kill.

James Bolger’s traps could not stop the tide of destruction eating away at the forest, but they certainly slowed it down, so much so that the mill owners decided something would have to be done.

When a logger had his neck broken by a hidden trap, the townspeople blamed James Bolger. It took them three months to finally catch him, but when they did their justice was swift. They dragged him to The Block, and the mill owner was given the honour of swinging the axe.

Just before the axe could fall there was an almighty crack. The tree that dropped killed the mill owner and ten of the townspeople, but not James Bolger. He escaped into the forest and was never seen again.


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