A Short Story

The hopeless serene birds watched from their painted positions of flight, as white strips of paper fell like delicate white feathers from the pale blue ceiling. Paper was falling halfheartedly, spiraling down towards the blazing orange flames. Each sliver fell gracefully and quietly, only to be quickly snatched from the hot stale air with a loud hiss. The orange tendrils stretched and reached for anything they could possibly attain, seeking to destroy. The coils of flame looked like the legs of a great luminescent octopus, swimming savagely through the air, curling around anything, living or dead – searing whatever it happened to touch, and burning it into a pile of black ash. The paper rained from the pale blue ceiling for only a minute, but to her it seemed an eternity. Everything slowed to a stop. She could almost make out the pattern of the shining black symbols on all the crisp white shreds of paper as they continued to gently fall. She squinted around the deteriorating room though her wet stinging eyes. The act seemed unfathomable. These weren’t just stories. These were worlds. These were dreams. These were people. The pale powder blue above was now being frantically seared a grotesque obsidian by the tips of thin burning orange paint brushes. The black spiraled outwards in all directions, consuming the painted birds ferociously. A tear traced its path through the dark ash on her cheek. The last-standing, grand mahogany case fell with a great crash. The fire cackled and roared in delight. The girl turned to the huge gaping hole where the remaining unhinged door stood, dead, at its post. Scattered books, jammed into, on, and under one another covered the marble floor before her and she ran. She stepped on worlds, kicking a dream up behind her. She tripped on a lie and ripped apart an adventure as she scrambled to get up. She regained her footing on a confession of love, and she ran. She ran on the pages of millions of books.

Post written by Grace Gordon

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