Flash Fiction – The Waterfall

I wander alone through the trees that rise high either side of me. The stream runs ankle-deep above my bare feet, soothing despite the stones slicing the skin on my soles. I smell only freshly cut grass, from the nearby fields that surround me in all directions.

A trickle of my red life essence joins the current and flows cloudy downstream. I step forward and gaze ahead of me. If I took another step I would be gone forever. The ground falls away suddenly, becoming a light waterfall cascading so far down the bottom is hidden by darkness which the light from the moon can’t reach.The trees either side of the stream cast skeletal shadows across the moonlit ground I stand upon. I gently lower myself onto my back, submerging my shoulders in the water. The jagged rocks dig sharp into my bare back. 

My head rests comfortably on a smooth pebble, and I look upwards, my eyes falling upon the sky dotted with glistening stars, twinkling specks filling the vast black expanse. A bright flash zips into view, gone again as quick as it appeared. I wish upon the shooting star. I wish for this moment to never end, for the stars to shine, the stream to flow and the trees to never die. 

I pull myself to my feet. Blood trickles down the backs of my legs from the lacerations in my back and joins the stream. I close my eyes and take a deep breath. My ears become my main sense, although I am met only with the gentle rustle of the wind in the trees and the distant sound of the waterfall reaching its destination. 

My back is chilled and prickles in goosebumps as the cool breeze hits the dampness of my skin. The cuts gently throb. I open my eyes and it takes a moment for me to readjust to my dimly lit surroundings. I run a lazy hand through my thick, wet hair. 

This is living. Feeling. I take the fatal step.

Art: mikkolagerstedt.deviantart.com

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