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Timber Tom

A. H. Mittelman

By Alex H Mittelman Published 4 months ago Updated 4 months ago 10 min read
Timber Tom
Photo by Tyler Casey on Unsplash

A Terrifying Tremulous Trees story

Timber Tom turned to his men, cleared his throat and began to read his long winded speech, tightly holding his notepad in his hairy sunburnt and scarred hands, his oily, messy hair stuck to the sides of his face while flys buzzed around him.

“Those damn sentient Redwoods are from a forest near Yosemite, and they’re stopping us from increasing our annual profits. We’re losing money and investors. Those trees are no ordinary trees. They can talk, think, and feel. They’re living with humans that protect them. They keep a twenty four hour watch, and whenever we enter the forest those environmentalist tree hugging hippie pests alert the trees, who then smash us, eat us or politely escort us out of the forest if we apologize to them and agree to leave. We must destroy those damned trees and their human guardians, cut them down and turn their lumber into paper to wipe our asses with to make sure they don’t create more sentient trees. How dare they take away from our bottom line. The only way to stop these abominations is to first cut down the humans protecting them. And since the authorities won’t do it because those garbage people are protecting their ‘private property,’ we’ve got to take matters into our own hands. Their ‘private property’ is our eminent domain. They’re the reason logging was outlawed in California forests. We can’t prove it, but we know they’re behind the terrorist attack that sent a missile hurdling towards the sun. Now, if we want lumber we have to grow our own. Let’s show them whose boss! And who knows, those tree bastards might turn our trees sentient, too. We might be killed in the middle of the night just for cutting down a few lousy trees on our own property because it was the brother or sister of another tree. And while they’re beautiful, oxygen and life creating, ancient and wise and existed long before we did, we need to cut the trees down for money. That’s all that matters in life, is making money at any cost. That’s why we do what we do, because despite many environmentally friendly alternative ways to make wood related products like toilet paper and houses, for example, hemp, bamboo, and recycled material, we have no idea how to use those alternate products and are to lazy, fat and dumb to figure it out. And we don’t want to go out of business because we love money to much, so lets not let these ‘alternate products’ become a reality. So let’s make sure these sentient trees get cut down before they breed and have tree babies in our yards and we get killed by the very trees we’re growing. Let’s teach these trees some respect. The world can wither, the skies can turn black, as long as our wallets stay fat and stacked, ” Timber Tom said.

The other loggers stood up and gave Tom a standing ovation while whistling and chanting “screw breathing,” and “Money, money, it's all that we see.”

“That’s right! The air may be foul, but lets turn those trees into debris!” Timber Tom said.

Tom was the owner of Timber Tom’s Tree Truncators, and all he cared about was money, logging, and logging for money.

Timber Toms company was a greedy group of loggers who had no problem cutting down trees illegally that were far beyond his companies property in order to maximize profits. They devised a plan to discreetly and secretly enter the forest and cut down all the sentient trees. They were going to use logging robots to aid them in their devious endeavor. Timber Tom, who already lusted for money, had the misfortune to see the sentient trees for himself, and had even witnessed Mr. Murder Tree tear apart a fellow logger and eat him, which only served to further justify his greed.

“That tree ripped the guys arms right off. Then he tenderized the guy by beating him with his own limbs, then swallowed the poor guy whole. Then he spit out the guys large intestine and used it as a rope to tie up the other loggers. It was disgusting, and us profiteering loggers deserve better. Sentient or not, we have a right to cut down all the trees we want to make money because we love money so much,” Tom would always tell people.

He knew the trees in the forest were not only responsible for the logging ban, but dangerous. Hence his plan to send robots into the woods to cut those trees into pieces.

“How dare they try to defend themselves, those tree bastards. How dare they want to live peacefully without the constant threat of destruction. They’d be nothing without us! We turn them into houses and toys and firewood to keep warm. And yes, even toilet paper. They should feel honored to be the ones cleaning our behinds. They should sit idly by and let us cut them into pieces. Those sentient trees are pure evil, I’m telling you,” Timber Tom said, made a throaty sound while he gathered saliva in his mouth, then spit a big blob of black tar on the ground.

Timber Toms robots were built by mechanics and engineers who were privately contracted and signed NDA’s, and those who were thought most likely to violate the terms of the NDA mysteriously vanished, insuring everyone else kept their mouths shut and the robots were untraceable should a bot ever be captured. And they were all programmed to self detonate should any reverse engineering be attempted so nobody could track the bots back to him or his mechanics. Timber Tom knew what he was doing was illegal, and wanted to make damn sure he didn’t go to jail for it because a robots RIN (robot identification number) was traced back to him. All the parts were black market or dark web purchased, untraceable.

The sun was setting, the fog was thick, and Tom and his crew sent the robots in. They were programmed to cut down anything made of wood and anybody that stood in their way.

*****

“Put me on your head, Twigly, I think I hear something,” Charlie said. I lifted him up and placed him atop my head.

“I see robots. They’re all carrying saws and axes. They’re heading towards us,” Charlie said.

“Trees, ready your arms,” I called. The other trees grabbed weapons they had made out of their own old, fallen branches and gathered around us. We built all sorts of weapons, including spear launchers and a spear cannon, all geniusly engineered by Charlie. I’m glad he’s on our side.

“What seems to be the problem, Twigly,” Benedict, one of the other trees, asked.

“Mechanical lumberjacks are heading in. Probably sent in by one of the logging companies,” I said.

The ground started to vibrate as the squealing of the robotic engines grew louder and were only trumped by the whining and buzzing of the circular saws that turned on as they ejected out of the robots arms.

“Sheilds up,” I yelled. We put up our stone and metal sheilds. Charlie learned metal smithing, engineering, physics, coding, and chemistry and Honon took several classes in masonry and stone cutting. They passed the knowledge on to us, and we worked together to build weapons and shields.

Charlie and Honon saddled up on our branches and prepared to fight.

"Ready to kick some loggin' ass?" Charlie asked Honon, a mischievous grin on his face.

“Damn straight! Let's show these mechanical assholes that they've barked up the wrong trees!" Honon replied.

The trees and I chucked our spears at the robots and they launched their saws at us. Our shields were able to block their saws. One of the saws ricochet’d off the shield and cut the head off the robot that fired it. Our spears broke a few of the robots, and the trees were able to use their branches and giant roots to smash the rest.

But when the robots were destroyed, a second round of bots marched in.

“Fire again. More, fire another volley,” I shouted, and our battle raged on.

Charlie had purchased several barrels of gasoline just in case we were attacked by an army, and this was an army.

We poked holes in the barrels and hurled them at the robots. Then Charlie lit rock weighted rags on fire and threw them at the gasoline drenched robots, who were then engulfed in flames and slowly melted.

The second wave of robots were eventually defeated, having mostly melted or were turned into scrap metal. The robots who didn’t burst into hell flames were stomped on by my tree brothers and I, and crushed.

The trees had thought they finally won and started to shout and dance in jubilation.

After a short moment, the fun ended when the loggers sent in drones, and as they swooped down from the sky, brushing against our leaves. Then they attempted to launch projectiles at us. Our branches knocked them down before their blades could do any heavy damage.

Timber Tom had finally walked over to meet us after witnessing the massacre of his robotic army and then his drones.

“What have you done? You’ve destroyed everything!” Timber Tom said and his face turned red with rage and he clenched his fists tighter and tighter.

“Timber Tom wouldn’t have had to witness the destruction of his robot army if he never sent them in to destroy us in the first place, yet he blames us. Is this guy insane?” I whispered to Charlie. Charlie shrugged.

Standing behind him was a small army of loggers standing in what looked like a Phalanx position.

“You cost me my income. I’ve had to declare bankruptcy twice because of you. You’ve destroyed my robots, my freaking robots! Do you have any idea how expensive those things are?” he shouted.

“Your robots were attempting to obliterate us,” I shouted back.

“So what? You’re just trees. It’s your job to be toilet paper, or to be lumber for a house made of wood, or lumber for furniture and firewood. If you surrender now, I’ll make sure you get made into a book,” Tom shouted.

“Will it at least be a Pulitzer Prize winning book?” Mr. Murder Tree asked.

“Don’t push your luck,” Timber Tom said.

“You’re a funny man. You must know that’s not why trees exist. You can’t possibly be that stupid, can you?” I shouted.

“That is exactly why you exist, you creepy talking tree. I’m going to personally make sure you get turned into toilet paper. How dare you question me, a human. Humans are better then everything, and so is money. That’s all you are, pulp to print money on and wood to burn and build houses with,” Timber Tom shouted.

“You must be Timber Tom,” Mr. Murder Tree asked.

“How do you know my name?” Timber Tom asked.

“You put your name on all your robotic tree cutting murder machines you sent to destroy us. It’s also on the chainsaws and axes you tried to kill us with, painted on the sides of your van and in bold letters on your shirts, hats, belt buckles, pants and shoes. But I don’t know how I could have possibly known your name, lucky guess I guess,” Mr. Murder Tree said and smiled.

“You can read, too?” Timber Tom asked.

“We can do lots of things. Like eat you,” Mr. Murder Tree said and grabbed Timber Tom by the legs, flipped him upside down and hovered high over his giant tree mouth. The other lumberjacks got closer to Mr. Murder Tree and attempted to cut him down with their axes and saws, but Mr. Murder Tree used his free tree branches to knock them all down. They fell like bowling pins.

“No, please, wait. Don’t eat me! I’ll give you anything you want,” Timber Tom begged.

“First things first, tell your men to back off. Send them home,” Mr. Murder tree said.

“I can’t do…” Timber Tom started to say when Mr. Murder Tree hovered the man above his mouth again.

“Ok, ok, everybody go home,” Timber Tom shouted.

“Will we get paid for a full day?” One of the loggers holding a chainsaw asked Timber Tom.

“Yes, yes I’ll pay you for the day. Just go home,” Tom shouted.

“All of us?” Another logger asked.

YES! All of you! Just go home,” Timber Tom growled, then ground his teeth. His face was bright red from being held upside down.

All the loggers left except Timber Tom. Charlie and I wanted to investigate him some more. I put him on the ground but pressed my roots against his chest to prevent him from moving.

“If we let you live, can you prove to us you’ll stay away. Will you sell your logging company or sign a contract agreeing only to cut your own homegrown trees? We could easily lock you up in our human dungeon if you don’t agree,” I said.

“Sure, let me just call my lawyer and have him draw up a contract for us,” Timber Tom said and reached in his pocket.

Timber Tom grabbed a walkie talkie out of his paints and and shouted, “air raid, obliterate everything.”

“What?” I asked.

“We have an active duty Air Force pilot on our payroll. You’re screwed now. He’s going to carpet bomb your forest. You didn’t think I didn’t have a plan B, did you?” Timber Tom said and laughed maniacally.

“We have other allies as well,” I said.

Master Lin and Master Chen, two karate masters, and their students had bred hundreds of the almost extinct carrier pigeon and trained them to drop rocks on anything flying and dangerous.

The masters and their students mobilized the pigeons and pointed to the incoming jet. They grabbed the heaviest rocks they could from the ground, flew high, and dropped hundreds of stones on the jet until the window cracked and the pilot was forced to eject.

“Damn. Lousy trees,” Timber Tom said lugubriously.

“Let’s keep this asshole in the dungeon, make sure he can’t hurt anybody else,” I said.

“Nice to meet you, Easily Triggered Tim,” Mr. Murder Tree said as he picked up Timber Tom and carried him to the dungeon.

“It’s Timber Tom,” Timber Tom said in a high pitched whiny voice.

“Point and case,” Mr. Murder Tree said and smiled.

“Well, it’s been a hell of a day. Let’s go get some rest,” Charlie said, so I put him on my head and took him home.

LovethrillerShort StorySeriesHumorFantasyFableAdventure

About the Creator

Alex H Mittelman

I love writing and just finished my first novel. Writing since I was nine. I’m on the autism spectrum but that doesn’t stop me! If you like my stories, click the heart, leave a comment. Link to book: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0CQZVM6WJ

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Comments (6)

  • L.C. Schäfer4 months ago

    Love the caricature of Timber Tom!

  • Hahahahahahahahaha Timber Tim had it coming. He could have been freed but he just had to go with his back up plan 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 Loved your story!

  • This is a fun Allegorical tale you are weaving Alex!

  • Novel Allen4 months ago

    This is probably more real than imagined. I can see the trees joining forces with computers to show us who is boss. Interesting take on trees.

  • This would be a good movie

Alex H Mittelman Written by Alex H Mittelman

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