This is a flash fiction piece that was written during one of my advanced fiction classes. I'm not sure where it came from or what really inspired it, maybe the innocence we have as children when we look up to a parental figure and the attachments we have to childhood objects that stay in the back of our minds and haunt us.
Before she died her hair jet black and scribbled under her eyes, she used to be blond and with pink eye shadow. Before she wore ripped jeans, she wore fairy wings that glittered.
The woods were a place her father took her too. He bought his cigarettes and angel dust and would watch his daughter run through the trees. She worshiped him, he was her God. He told her that she could be anything in the world if she wanted to. And she did.
Her mother was a science teacher at the high school who both hated and loved her husband. When her daughter was sixteen she watched him teach her how to tear her body apart by stabling it with needles. It’s just a piercing mom! She watched him share his drugs with their daughter, inhaling the dust.
With bloodshot eyes she watched her mother kick her father out. She was as high as the clouds. Floating. She wanted to be an artist. A childish career, her mother would say. Her best, twisted work only appeared on the page when she flew. Her father taught her that.
It was cold night when he called her. She hadn’t seen him in six months. He told her to go out to the woods and bring her old baby things. She snuck out with a garbage bag of tiny pink clothes and toys. He was smoking a joint, he looked tin like the branches, hollow like the dead trees.
He dumped the bag and threw a match on the pile. She saw her fairy wings on top being melted away by flames. They looked smaller. Her father laughed and cursed her mother, spitting on the burning pile. He hugged his daughter and walked back into the trees, his laugh echoing.
The next day seemed brighter. She walked to the forest and the fairy wings sat among the rubble. Burnt but still beautiful. She smiled and picked them up. She pinned them to a tree and thought about her father and how he left her again, but she didn’t feel sad. They blossomed through the bark and stretched like branches. They were brown and torn and didn’t glitter anymore, but that was okay.