Archive for November 2nd, 2011

2nd November
written by amber


The jungle presses in, sticky and smelling of rotted vegetation. Birds, insects and frogs trill a ubiquitous high-pitched whine, but the boy doesn’t notice. He’s been here all his life and he’s used to it. Only new things catch his attention, like the canoe carrying the fat man with skin the colour of maggots.

Brown-faced men paddle the canoe and the pale man sits in the middle doing nothing besides swivelling his head from side to side, scanning each shore, aiming some kind of fancy blow gun at the overhanging trees. It’s not a blow gun, the boy discovers. Instead of holding the rod to his lips, the man lifts it to his shoulder, tickles its belly with one finger. A loud bang roars out and a monkey falls into the water from the trees.

As the men row over to retrieve the monkey, the boy retreats deeper into the jungle. He feels he was well camouflaged but the monkey probably thought that too.

The river will bring the men in the canoe to his village, and the boy runs quickly to warn his tribe that a powerful warrior is soon to be seen among them. But as he runs, he recalls the punishment his mother had given him that morning for teasing his little sister, and he recalls the way the other boys laughed at him for crying from the punishment.

He stops before he reaches the village and climbs a giant vine that twines around a tree fatter than his hut. From a high viewpoint, he waits for the intruders to arrive.

The Story 365 project is a year-long marathon of short story writing, with a new story for every day of the year and posted on this website from May 1, 2011 – April 30, 2012. Stories must be a minimum of 200 words. Please help me by adding first line suggestions in the Comment section of any story.