When He Falls

Good can come from bad, says your wise-worded grandmother, so you hold your breath and hope hard. 

You nurture. You nourish. You wait.

He is smooth skinned, sweet smelling, russet cheeked.  He is knowledge, wisdom, joy. He is deliciously golden. He is yours.

You are vigilant, always, for the aphid, the maggot, the worm, for the tiny punctures that will alert you before the rot sets in. You are afraid.

He will fall, eventually. You know this. Your faith has long since flown, but still you pray that, when he does, he will fall far, far away from the tree.

This story was shortlisted in the June 2023 monthly micro fiction competition.

About the author: Alison Wassell is a flash fiction and short story writer, longlisted, shortlisted and placed in various competitions and published by Reflex Fiction, Retreat West, Bath Flash Fiction Award, The Cabinet of Heed, NFFD and other random places.