#ShortShortStories

a cure for the common block

Grandma, What a Big Mouth You Have

Yves nestled into the sleeping bag listening to the soothing sounds of nature outside his tent: the soft rustle of leaves around his encampment, insects chirping to attract mates, an owl controlling its flaps as it landed on a branch and let out a hoot. A loud rustle made his eyes jolt open; he was disoriented, he couldn’t tell if he had just fallen asleep or had been asleep for hours. There was a steady rustling through the bushes to his right but it was too small for a bear and he was hundreds of miles from the nearest cougar sightings, so he closed his eyes to drift back to sleep before he noticed something – complete silence. Aside from the wind, he heard nothing but the beating of his heart, which grew faster the more nervous he got. To remain vigilant – yet focused – he began listing the animals it could possibly be. However his list became infinitely small when he heard a shriek from a maw he had never in his life heard, and from his throat bellowed a scream nobody would ever hear again.

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