This post is for the Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers (FFfAW) Challenge, run by Priceless Joy. This week’s photo prompt is from Pixabay. The challenge is that you write a story of 75-175 words inspired by the photo prompt below. I hope you like it.
“You see, Eric,” Martha explained, placing a new slide under the microscope, “phytopathogenic fungi are parasitic, secreting enzymes to break down the tissues of their host upon which they then feed.”
Eric didn’t respond. He never did, letting her ramble freely. That’s why she liked having him there. She could talk as much as she wished without fear of belittlement or abuse. He couldn’t silence her.
After all, he was merely a collection of bones now, strung together with wire. His voice had bled out with a knife slashed throat on a fear filled night eight years earlier. She’d buried his body deep in the garden and left it to decompose for over a year until loneliness had driven her to gather his bones.
In death he could be the partner he’d never been in life.
“An endophytic fungus, however, supports the plant with which symbiosis is developed, extending hyphae through the intercellular spaces to strengthen it against herbivorous attention, environmental stresses and the like. They’re the best type, don’t you think?”
Eric didn’t respond.
Word Count: 175
I hope the ‘science-speak’ didn’t put anyone off! I also hope it’s accurate – I am by no means an expert. 😀 In case anyone’s curious, this is the type of thing Martha might have been looking at under her microscope – the hyphae (the squiggly dark lines) of an endophytic fungi extending through the spaces between the cells of a long-leafed plant.