Flash Fiction: A Dangerous Thing

Sasha showed Gimmor the strange object he had found in the abandoned facility.  Gimmor made intelligent sounding noises as he turned it this way and that and peered at it from all angles, but he truly had no more idea than Sasha did.

“Is it a box?” Gimmor wondered aloud.

“If so, why doe it only have one closed side?  And why is it full of these thin leaves?” Sasha argued.

“Perhaps it is part of an animal,” Gimmor declared as though the word “perhaps” was merely a formality.

Sasha peered doubtfully and said, “It certainly seems to be covered in skin, but I can find no veins.”

“Well, it must be rubbish,” said Gimmor, but he held it as though it were precious.

They found the City Foreman, working at his desk in the People’s Hall, and spoke over one another as they explained what they had found and where they had found it.  They expected the Foreman to be pleased.  When he looked at the thing, though, he opened it and scowled at the strange, small black marks all over the thin leaves inside the skin cover of the box that was not a box.

All at once, the Foreman stood, walked over to the fireplace, and threw the object in, where it quickly caught fire.  The boys gasped and gaped and reached out their hands in agony, but did not stray from where they stood. They knew that the Foreman’s word was law.

“Why?” Gimmor cried.

“A thing like that is too dangerous to exist,” said the Foreman.  And then he smiled, and handed them each a candy, and urged them to go home and watch the daily programs on their viewers.


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