A challenge was issued and of course I couldn’t resist. Anna Meade ran a contest to promote the book The Fairy Ring by Mary Losure. The goal was to write a 300 word flash fiction about an encounter with a fairy folk. I chose to make it completely fictional, with a very young protagonist. I incidentally do not have any siblings. At least not anymore.
Selling Your Sister to the Goblins
My teeth cut into the slimy bar of Irish Spring. All I did was call her a dirty liar. Totally true.
Lizzie saunters by the bathroom door, her mouth curled in a smirk. What’s she so glad about? She’ll never find her book. Not where I hid it. She leans against the railing, staring at me.
“Wha…” My tongue strikes the soap and a bitter taste fills my mouth.
She giggles. I kick shut the door. I’d give anything to make her disappear.
Fwah-thunk. The water gurgles in the toilet bowl. Then the room fills with the odor of rotted cheese. A hairy hand grips the side. I jump, the soap clunking to the floor. A man the size of a cat scrambles out of the water. Matted black hair speckles his body.
He bows. “Og-Alog the goblin.”
I scoot against the towel rack. “What do you want?”
“I make people disappear.”
This has got to be some sort of hallucination. Soap poisoning.
“You can take kids away?”
“I can and I will. A changeling steps in. No one will know.” He grins. A thin layer of moss coats his teeth.
This is no joke. Lizzie could really be gone. I glance at the soap and smile.
“Do it. Bring that change thing.”
The goblin scurries up, blackened fingernails gripping my pants. “I have your permission?” He smells like sour milk.
Cracks spread along the wall in the shape of a door. Wood squeals as it rotates inward. A small figure about my sister’s size crouches inside.
I can’t do this. Not even to Lizzie.
“I changed my mind. Take it back.”
“She did not hesitate,” the goblin says, lips spread wide over mossy teeth.
The figure looks up. It’s my face.
The changeling is me.