Welcome to the sixth week of Short Fiction Wednesday, in which I feature the first 1.5-2k of a story from my ebook collection Night Bird Soaring and Other Stories, which features 17 different reprint selections ranging from fantasy to horror to alternate history. If you enjoy what you read here, you can purchase the full collection at Amazon or B&N for $2.99.
Today’s selection is a flash fiction horror piece, so you get the full story below! It originally appeared in Dark Recesses, and rather than go into much about it, we’ll just move onto the story. Be warned that this is a horror story, so the usually content cautions apply.
Someday, someone will find her and he’ll love her, that much is certain. She can be difficult to love, but there must be someone strong enough.
Today a cowboy on a chestnut mare finds her. Or maybe he’s a cattle rancher. She’s not sure. He’s rugged, handsome in his sweat-stained brown Stetson, and he wears a ratty yellow bandana around his neck, hanging slightly askew. She loves how he stares at her with his stubbly jaw hanging open. Certainly he doesn’t see such lovely creatures poking out of the barren desert floor everyday. She’s been here for a while; her once long, blonde hair is red from years of sweeping it through the dust, and her skin’s a little leathery from the sun. I’m still beautiful though, she muses. Many have told her so.
The cowboy’s shadow gives her a welcome respite from the afternoon heat. “Mighty hot today, don’t you think?” she asks with a bright smile. Polite small talk is always a nice opening into real conversation.
“What in God’s name happened to you? Someone bury you up to your neck or somethin’?” he asks.
“I deserved it.” She sighs. “I was a bad girl.”
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