War Legs

1896 Olympic marathon. Public domain photo by Burton Holmes.
1896 Olympic marathon. Public domain photo by Burton Holmes.

(Note: this above image is the prompt for this story)


War Legs

Run. Run faster.


They galloped east. They skittered west. Now they trampled south.


Let those legs fly!


It always got tricky when they ran south. The dark trees spiked from the ground, a landscape barren but full of what mattered most- terra firma.


As their feet pounded down, the powdery dirt collected their energy. It was genius, really. The equation was this:

Directional Movement x Strength Expended = Fight Power


(As if a war was won any other way.)


And so they ran for their children and their mothers. Their sweet sweat translated into security. At least, as long as they could bound on.


Eventually, when they reached the power of ten in all four directions, the ground would shake, earth tumbling over itself, thrusting the enemies aside.


Only then would the land rest at peace and these inhabitants– in garbled socks and wool trousers– kick-up their feet, pull their daughters into their laps, and enjoy iced mint tea once more.


This was written for this Flash! Friday fiction contest.

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Wormwood, Fool-Struck, and Burn to Fly


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