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When There's No Ground Left

7th April, Story #97/366

By L.C. SchäferPublished 3 months ago 3 min read

The twins sat in the poky room, whispering to each other. It glinted between them in the dark. Tilde bit her lip, her eyes darting to the doorway.

"How'd you get it?" she hissed.

He replied with a sly grin. The structure creaked and shifted below them. They ignored it, unconcerned.

"I'm serious! Oh, we're going to get in so much trouble."

Her brother shrugged his lanky shoulders and his eyes gleamed.

"You worry too much," he said.

"What'll you do with it?"

"Sell it, of course." That was Klaus. Always looking for another penny.

"Whoever to? How can you without getting in trouble?" That was Tilde. Always the voice of caution.

Tilde ran a finger over intricate silvery surface in wonder. A mechanism whirred, and the object opened like a scroll. Tilde pulled away as though burned. A smooth female voice read from the cramped script, engraved too small to see with the naked eye. Colour drained from Klaus' face, taking his cocky grin with it. Tilde's eyes widened.

"Turn it off, Klaus," she said, her voice low. "We need to get rid of that thing."

"You're serious? Tilde, if people knew about this..."

"Oh Klaus, grow up! You really think nobody already knows that "venenum terrae" is perfectly safe, and we've all been scratching out a living up here for nothing? This is proof that some people already know, they're already down there!"

"But Tilde, this means everyone can know! And then things will change! Just like we always wanted."

"Just like you want, maybe."

He frowned, his expression twisting as if he was seeing her in a new way. A way he didn't like. She pressed on, "There's generations of people who have never been further down than two Levels, never mind all the way to the Ground! This... up here... this is all they know."

"Maybe," he said, his voice cold. "But I think enough people will care. Enough people will be brave." He didn't say, Unlike you. He didn't have to.

He put It in his knapsack and left without saying Goodbye. Tilde never saw him again.

++++++++++++

Word count: (excluding note): 366

Submitted on: 7th April at 22:40

*Quick Author's Note*

First, and most importantly: thank you for reading!

The story behind the story: This was based on the idea that when there's hardly any green ground left, its rarity will make it desirable. Rich people wanting to put their feet on solid ground, get their hands in the soil. Of course, it's well-known people are bad for the earth and will destroy it, so misinformation is spread to keep people from setting foot on it, to keep it safe. Wealthy people, obviously, consider themselves exempt and treat it as a holiday home/retirement village.

A Year of Stories: I'm writing a story every day this year. This one makes an 98 day streak since the 1st January. I'm collating them all here.

Thank you

Thank you again! Especially if you are one of the people who has been staunchly reading these daily scribbles since the start of the year. I see you, and appreciate you 😁

I do my best to reciprocate as many reads as possible. If you leave me a comment, that makes it much easier.

Short StoryMicrofiction

About the Creator

L.C. Schäfer

Book-baby is available on Kindle Unlimited

Flexing the writing muscle

Never so naked as I am on a page. Subscribe for nudes.

Here be micros

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Sometimes writes under S.E.Holz

"I've read books. Well. Chewed books."

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Comments (6)

  • Caroline Craven2 months ago

    These stories terrify me… mainly because I can see it happening. Great storytelling as always.

  • I can definitely see this happening in the near future. Heck, the lies have already been happening for wayyyy too long already

  • Interesting - this feels like a reversal of the "we all go underground in an apocalypse" situation!

  • Lindsay Sfara3 months ago

    You always have such a knack for telling and exploring so much in so little with micro fiction. I really enjoy reading your stories to learn this type of craft. Wonderfully done!

  • Esala Gunathilake3 months ago

    Well done! That is great.

  • John Cox3 months ago

    Another intriguing tale and an exploration of character. Well done, LC!

L.C. SchäferWritten by L.C. Schäfer

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