Black Petals Issue #93 Autumn, 2020

Pay the Price!
BP Artists and Illustrators
Mars-News, Views and Commentary
Justin Alcala: A Horse for Us All-Fiction
Matthew Penwell: Bless Be Him-Fiction
Shiloh Simmons: Coffin Birth-Fiction
John Cox: Don't Teach Cats Latin-Fiction
Ken Hueler: I, Said the Fish-Fiction
R. A. Busby: Not the Man I Married-Fiction
Jude Clee: Notes from a Bathroom Stall-Fiction
M. W. Moriearty: Scarecrows-Fiction
Robert Masterson: Sharper Than She Ever Imagined-Fiction
Michael Steven: The Mirror-Fiction
Kevin Hawthorne: The Song-Fiction
Marlin Bressi: The Man on the Box-Fiction
Terry Riccardi: Winter Hunt-Fiction
Stephen J. Tillman: Angry Tammy-Flash Fiction
Andreas Hort: Pay the Price!-Flash Fiction
Sam Clover: Piety and Parm-Flash Fiction
Deisy Toussaint: Parasite in the Shadows-Flash Fiction
Outnumbered-Flash Fiction by Cindy Rosmus
Mickey Sloan: Basement Beldam-Poetry
Daniel G. Snethen: Grandmother Screamed-Poetry
Daniel G. Snethen: Pumpkin Tanka-Poetry
Daniel G. Snethen: Yellow Death-Haiku
Theresa C. Gaynord: The JuJu Man-Poetry
Theresa C. Gaynord: The Widow Paris-Poetry
Theresa C. Gaynord: Funeral at the Louisiana Bayou-Poetry
Theresa C. Gaynord: The Old Hag-Poetry
Loris John Fazio: Halloween Prayer-Poetry
Marilyn Lou Berry: My Darling, My Sustenance-Poetry
Chris Collins: Nature-Poetry

Art by W. Jack Savage 2020

Pay the Price!

by Andreas Hort



If you’re readin’ this, it means we’re dead. If you’re a tourist, it means you’ve killed us. And if you think that ain’t fair, fuck you. You’re the ones who stopped visitin’ our town after that coronavirus and quarantine shit. Ungrateful bastards. You come to our town, eat our food, walk our roads, fuck our youth, but the moment we take a little somethin’ in exchange, you start screamin’ and beggin’, “Please, no, please don’t take away my child or husban’ or boo-whoever.” Spoiled fuckers. Didn’t your parents teach you that everythin’ has a price? You come, you enjoy our town, and in exchange, you leave somethin’ behind for the forest people. Otherwise we need to give ‘em one of ours, and there’s barely five hundred of us.

Or was.

You fuckers stopped comin’, so we played a lottery; only the unlucky one was the winner. But the forest people are real hungry, oh yes. We played and played, sacrificin’ one screamin’ winner after another, and now there’s maybe thirty of us left. Prolly less. And, for the first time in the history of the town, the forest people came out of the forest. I’m writin’ this as they’re bangin’ on our doors and barricaded windows. I can hear people screamin’ in the houses whose doors and windows already gave way. You fuckers. It’s all your fault. But you’ll pay the price. That’s the law of nature, payin’ the price.

If you’re readin’ this, it means we’re dead, but it also means you’re in our town. I bet the forest people are starvin’ right now. They usually are. I bet they know you’re here, too. I bet they’re real happy to see you. Did I mention that they make no sound when they sneak around? Do you already feel hot breath on the back of your neck?

Fucker. Time to pay the price.


Andreas Hort resides in the Czech Republic. In his free time, he writes and takes steps toward his goal to move to an English-speaking country. His works have been published in several anthologies by Black Hare Press and in Bloody Red Nose: Fifteen Fears of a Clown by Dave Higgins.

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