This week’s photo writing prompt courtesy of Sue Vincent’s fun #writephoto challenge is entitled “copper”. The goal – to write a story based on the autumnal photo below. I’m afraid to say my effort is yet another dark tale, at least it’s the right season (310 words). Be sure to check out the other great takes by clicking on the link above and if you haven’t already, why not have a go yourself.
He’d died in her arms and with his death, she’d lost the only thread that had ever tied her to humanity. All they had to do was leave them be. That had been the unspoken agreement. She’d stay in her small valley, deep in the forest, they could have the rest. But it wasn’t enough for them, they had to take everything. Well, she could be greedy too.
She kissed him tenderly on the lips. Gently closed his eyelids and stared to the heavens. She recalled the years they’d spent in the valley. It had been an eternal spring, the rich blossom never fell and they’d run, laughing through endless eternal bluebells. She’d been so happy, so content in their little valley. A lifetime of isolation and loneliness forgotten, if but for a moment. Why did they have to ruin it, she thought, hadn’t they punished her enough.
She laid him down gently, stood and pulled the hood over her long auburn hair. It would always be spring here for her, but not if she stayed, not now. Her course was clear. It always had been. He’d only ever delayed the inevitable, she understood that now. Heading up the narrow track out of the valley she found the well-worn path back to civilisation.
With each step, summer fled, chased away by her dark mood. She walked through a perpetual blanket of cascading copper leaves, feet rustling in the dying foliage. An expanding orange stain traced her progress. By the time she reached the forest edge, her sorrow had turned to anger, all green turned to brown.
She knew they would be waiting, knew they’d bring their armies. Ten thousand men arrayed across the wide valley, Not one a shade on her love. Not one would be spared from her bitter harvest.