Welcome to Sorchia’s Universe—A-Z Blog Edition.
April is #A-ZChallenge month when everybody who is anybody joins the mad scramble to post daily content in alphabetical order for the entire month of April (not counting Sundays–except that we count the last Sunday this year because . . .its a leap #A-ZChallenge Year–I guess.)
This year, my offering is a serial story—a Gothic fantasy featuring vengeful witches, disappearing castles, betrayal, and romance (PG only for this one.) Remember to Join Sorchia’s Universe to be get alerts when I post each episode and to be eligible for the giveaway at the end of April and to get my monthly newsletter which contains all the Sorchia’s Universe news that’s fit to print–and some that isn’t.
If you enjoy my #A-ZChallenge story, take a look at the Books link to see what else I write.
Likes and comments are the heart’s blood of this kind of blog hop, so please hit the Like button early and often and leave notes on the posts you visit.
Happy Hopping, A-Zers.
“A Cold Spring” by Sorchia DuBois
Episode 1: A Cherry Tomato
A cherry tomato.
That’s what I want.
I’ve craved it for the entire cold, dark winter. The subtle pop as the marble-sized, red globe separates from the calyx. The delectable crunch between the teeth and the sweet explosion of tangy, blood-warm juice. A fresh-picked, sun-warmed, red, ripe cherry tomato.
But Spring is late and my spindly plants need more light. The sky today—as nearly every day of my exile—threatens a cold rain. I mound mud around the delicate stems, patting gently.
Solanum lycopersicum of the variety cerasiforme cultivated by the Aztecs in the fifth century and brought to Europe by Hernán Cortés in 1521—unless Christopher Columbus beat him to it nearly twenty years earlier—valued for soups and sauces, elegant in salads, and a distant relative of the deadly nightshade––belladonna––the witch’s herb. Hairy stem and dog-toothed leaves prickle my palm, their pungent odor a greeting and a warning.
A flutter in my belly reminds me I’ve crouched in the garden for far too long. I sit back on the soggy ground, lift my shirt, and inspect my distended abdomen. A tiny foot-shaped bulge blossoms beside my flattened, stretched navel. She doesn’t like being cramped and she’s not shy about letting me know.
With a rolling undulation from one side of my belly to the other, she curls into a comfortable ball. I caress the firm mound where she nestles just out of reach, moving my hand over her indistinct outline.
“Not long now,” I whisper to her.
“It will be alright,” I whisper to myself.
A chilly wind fingers the back of my neck. The fine hair on my arms prickles and a buzz in my head drowns out the cawing crows. Between one breath and the next, a vision rises from the garden mud. Beyond my control, these visions have visited me often in recent months– horrifying replays of devastation and death.
The phantasm twists it’s tendrils in my hair before I can run, unfurls fronds of color and light and fear, holds me in a sticky embrace. All I can do is clutch the ragged tufts of last year’s grass and hold on.
By the way–If you are participating in the A-Z Challenge with offerings of the fiction nature, add your link to the Fiction-Only list below (if it works). Might be a good idea to put the link to your first post or to your general blog site and let it go at that. Use the list to connect to others of like mind and to find more #AtoZChallenge 2017 stories. But be sure to go to the main A-Z Blog for current posts on every topic.
16 thoughts on “A Cold Spring–Episode 1: A Cherry Tomato”
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That’s a very gripping story. I can’t wait to be done with this comment so that I can move on to your post on letter B! Also, a great initiative to make a list of all the fiction-based blogs. I’m doing the same on my blog. I’ll definitely add your name to the list as well. 🙂
Oh my! Heading to B right now!
Ahh, love the shift in tone toward the end there. Clearly, this won’t be a pleasant day of gardening. Can’t wait to see what comes next!
Looking forward to seeing where this goes.
A Back of the Envelope Calculation
Your story is quite compelling.
Your narrative style is very interesting. Very organic and garden-oriented. I’m looking forward to reading more! (And hoping nothing bad happens to the unborn baby…that would be awful.) 🙂
Yup, I’m in for the duration. Looking forward to seeing where you go with this. Mine are all individual (unlinked) short bits of fiction. Tempted to try something like this next year though.
Bunny and the Bloke
Description is wonderful. You’ve got an ambitious plan and you are off to an excellent start. I look forward to reading more.
Well, I’m hooked. And I have to wait for Monday for what follows?
I don’t think that’s fair 🙁
Really enjoyed the start of your challenge, can you tell that? 🙂
The Old Shelter – 1940s Film Noir
Thanks so much!!! I know–this one-day week is a little weird. Thanks for reading–I hope you enjoy the rest of the story.