A little something new from a longer work in progress, now at Fictionaut:


Backs in the grass, legs straight, bare feet resting at angles, Rachel and I, both of us seven, looked up through the oak limbs that made black lightning cracks across a blinding blue sky.  Three hula hoops sat trapped in the trees’ sprawled grasp.  I crossed my hands over my chest, feeling my voice buzz there when I said, “That one’s important.”  I jutted a chin toward the pink hula hoop, bright pink with stripes, the one suspended furthest out on the limbs.  One pink, one metallic green, one the color of a penny with silver glints.  

“Why’s that one important?” Rachel asked, a dismissive chortling in her throat at the end of it.  Her head shifted in the grass, her pale gaze angling for me.  She made a longer line in the grass than I did.  Her arms could spread out wider.  Her fingernails scratched at the dried ground along the roots.  “Why’s that one so important?”

“Because.  That’s the last one you go through before you’re on another planet.”  We thought if we stared hard enough, we could launch ourselves through the hoops and end up somewhere else.  But it had to be through one and then the next.  I’d explained this already, but Rachel was digging at the ground and staring me down instead of the hoops.  Read more here.