How To Even Begin – Flash Fiction

This was originally posted to Tumblr on 17th March 2023 for Flash Fiction Friday prompt #FFF194 Tree Of Life

*Raz is running out of time and, as xe gets more desperate, xe is willing to try more extreme solutions. Even if those potential solutions include trying to talk to a tree.*

The oak roots led Raz through the thick forest, not exactly a call or a specific path, but clear enough as they rose through the soil in twisted knots. It would be far too easy to get twisted around, to lose track of oneself in the midst of the forest. Especially with the way the other trees crowded together to block out the sky. In the cool shadows cast by the leaves, Raz could hardly make out whether the sun was still up.

This was a really fucking stupid idea.

Why Evelin thought this was a good idea, Raz would never know. But they were both getting desperate by this point. A curse like this got stronger every year, and Evelin was getting lost to it. So, Raz would try. Even if xe had never been involved in this kind of magic before. Even if xe wasn’t connected with nature the way other magical creatures were. The way Evelin used to be.

The tree itself appeared out of the woods, stretching over Raz’s head. Xe stumbled to a halt. The branches reached out across the tops of the other trees crowded around, just as expansive and gnarled as the roots beneath Raz’s feet.

The magic of it hummed over Raz, lending an air of stillness to the entire area. Specs of pollen or magic hovered in the air, floating in the channels of sunlight that filtered through the leaves and branches.

Raz took a breath and stepped up to a well-treaded alcove of roots, kneeling before the tree and closing xyr eyes.

How did one even begin to commune with a tree like this? Other magical items had more obvious interaction. A ring went on a finger, a book was to be read, a skull usually spoke. But a tree…

Xe pressed a hand against the trunk.

Would it be the trunk? Or the root system? Root systems were the ways plants communicated with one another, weren’t they? Would Raz have been better trying to communicate with the roots? But how would xe begin to communicate with tree roots anyway? Digging into the ground to access roots definitely wouldn’t ingratiate Raz to the tree. But how else could xe communicate with it?

A trunk was, at best, an awkward comparison to pressing a hand against someone’s coat. A thick coat at that for a tree this old.

Raz sat back on their heels and looked up into the leaves over their head. “Fuck if I know what you want. You’re obviously well maintained by nature and your internal magic alone, I can’t gift you with anything.” Xe sighed. “I just want to help Evelin.”

“The witches told me not to speak of her.”

“Fuck me!” Raz tripped backwards over xemself, falling onto their butt on the dirty ground, some fallen leaves crunching under their weight. “You can talk.”

“You came to communicate with me.”

“Yeah, but I thought communicating with a tree would be, you know…” Xe trailed off, with no idea what xe actually meant. Xe had had no idea what communicating with a tree would be like, but xe certainly hadn’t expected it to talk.


This story borrows characters from a larger universe as yet not explored in a published space. Let me know if you’re interested.

If you liked this please do share it with your friends, family, or that coworker you kinda tolerate.
If you’re interested in my book, you can find out more at or sign up to my Mailing List
Don’t forget you can find me on Social Media as @nopoodles
If you want to support me you can buy me a coffee here
and I’ll see you all next week for another Short Story.

© nopoodles 2016, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020, 2021, 2022, 2023


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s