Hugo swung his legs to the floor and sat up. What a night! The party lasted into the wee hours and by the time he’d stumbled home; he passed out on the couch, never making it into his bed. His head ached, and thirst clogged his throat.
He belched. The stench of alcohol and the pong of a dirty ashtray perfumed the air. He fumbled for his cigarettes, rifling through his pockets, on the hunt for his lighter. He retrieved a pack from his shirt pocket and found it empty. His anger erupted. He balled up the packet and threw it across the room.
“Hey, quit throwing stuff at me!”
“What?” Hugo’s bleary eyes tried to focus, but he couldn’t see straight.
He staggered toward the open window and gasped. Like an old-timey movie reel, grainy images flickered on a silver screen. After his bloodshot eyes cleared, he observed what looked to be his house, precariously perched in the crook of a massive tree. A glaring of cats roamed across the roof, and an elephant stared him in the face.
“Yeah, I’m talking to you.”
With eyes the size of saucers, Hugo shook his head. “Elephants don’t talk,” he wheezed out.
“Well, this one does. I’m your conscious. Wikipedia says:
“Conscience is an aptitude, faculty, intuition or judgment that assists in distinguishing right from wrong. Moral judgment may derive from values or norms. In psychological terms conscience is often described as leading to feelings of remorse when a human commits actions that go against his/her moral values and to feelings of rectitude or integrity when actions conform to such norms.”
“Did you just define my conscious?” Hugo ran his hands nervously through his hair.
“Sure. How many did you have last night? Do you feel any remorse?”
“Too many to count. And, no, I don’t feel any guilt at my having had a good time. Now, leave me alone!”
“I bet you drank “Green Faeries,” again last night,” said the elephant. A grin stretched across his face.
Hugo closed his eyes and swayed in place. Damn absinthe! No wonder I can’t focus.
“Now do you feel guilty?” The elephant extended his long trunk toward the window. He nosed Hugo’s shoulder.
Hugo raised his shaking hand to his damp forehead. His heartbeat raced, and he shivered as if the heat of the day chilled him to the bone.
“What have you done with my house? What’s the deal with the cats?” asked Hugo.
The elephant’s nasal voice dissolved into laughter. “It’s the delirium tremors, my friend. Stick around, we’ve got a big show planned for you.”
This story was created from two sources. One, D. Wallace Peach’s monthly writing challenge, and two; this post from The Dark Netizen. I laughed the entire time I wrote this story. Thanks for the inspiration, you guys! 😀
“A good poem is a contribution to reality. The world is never the same once a good poem has been added to it. A good poem helps to change the shape of the universe, helps to extend everyone’s knowledge of himself and the world around him.”
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Colleen M. Chesebro is an American Poet who loves crafting paranormal fantasy and magical realism, cross-genre flash fiction, syllabic poetry, and creative nonfiction. Colleen sponsors a weekly syllabic poetry challenge, called Tanka Tuesday, on wordcraftpoetry.com where participants learn how to write traditional and current forms of haiku, senryu, haiga, tanka, gogyohka, tanka prose, renga, solo-renga, haibun, cinquain, Etheree, nonet, and shadorma poetry. Colleen's syllabic poetry has appeared in the Auroras & Blossoms Poetry Journal, and in “Hedgerow, a journal of small poems.” She’s won numerous awards from participating in the Carrot Ranch Rodeo, a yearly flash fiction contest sponsored by carrotranch.com. In 2020, she won first place in the Carrot Ranch Folk Tale or Fable category, with her story called “Why Wolf Howls at the Moon.” Colleen is a Sister of the Fey, where she pursues a pagan path through her writing. When she is not writing, she is reading. She also loves gardening and crocheting old-fashioned doilies into works of art.