The tree

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic

What the tree became

Submitted: October 02, 2017

A A A | A A A

Submitted: October 02, 2017



When I was young, I was as supple as a snake and I grew tall and slender. I felt that I could touch the sky with my fingertips and I swayed and sang with the summer wind. As I grew broader, my trunk became the bulwark against which the small creatures of the forest braced their backs in winter weather.


I had just reached the pride of my full prime when the men in hard hats came with their steely instruments of torture. They marked my trunk with yellow slashes, then others came and cut me with their noisy saws before floating me down the river to their torture chambers in the delta. 


I was sliced and baked and it surprised me to find that my awareness remained no matter how they cut me. Those around me slowly gave up the fight to remain sentient, but my own mind only seemed to grow stronger with each passing day.


My wood was in peak condition on the day He came to the sawmill. I could smell the fear on the men in hard hats as He walked among the stacks. He stopped at my feet and I felt his cool smooth hands on the planks. 

“How much of this tree have you sold?” he demanded.

“None Master.”

“I will take all of it then.”


I was loaded onto a huge truck that crawled out of the forest to where a noble house was under construction. My planks became the panelling on the walls of the Master’s Special Room, and the frame against the wall with its pulleys and ropes, and the wide-lapped chair, and the punishment bench, and even the spanking bat and the handles of the Master’s whips.


I watched in some pity as young women were brought into that room, and often their tears moved me to impotent rage. My eyes burned as I saw them bent naked over the Master’s skinny legs as he spanked the pink globes of their buttocks, and my ears suffered their cries as he strung them on his frame and tortured them. 


My wood pleased His pampered hands as I am smooth and do not splinter, and no matter what he did with his spanking bats and whip handles I remained close-grained and silky smooth.


It was about five years as humans count time until the Master took a bride. She was young and as white as milk, with long pale hair and clear blue eyes. He brought her to his Special Room leading her by the hand, naked and blindfolded. Her tears were pitiful as he tortured her with all the skill and finesse available to his manicured and oiled hands. Even I, who had seen so much, felt in the fibres of my grain the terror of a child so abused by the man who had only that morning promised to love and care for her.


I was a tree once, then I became the stocks in which a young bride suffered, and the bat that bruised her white skin, and the bench to which she was tied as her husband abused her tender flesh.


I was all those things. 


And I was also the iron-studded cudgel with which the Master’s young bride stoved in his skull...  


© Copyright 2018 Jane Jago. All rights reserved.

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