Flash Fiction: The Rock

“You know, it’s really getting cold down here,” Fred said to Ethel. “Like, really cold.”

“It’s always cold down here, Fred. That’s what happens when the ground freezes.”

“Right, yeah, I get that. I know.”

“Do you, Fred? It seems like every year when we get to this time of year, you start complaining about how cold it is.”

“Do I? I guess I just don’t like the cold is all.”

“You know, I could keep you warm.”

“You’re cold-blooded, Ethel. You couldn’t keep anything warm.”

“You don’t have to be cold-hearted, Fred.”

“Yeah? Is that supposed to be an insult?”

“I honestly don’t know anymore. Can we just get some sleep already?”

“I guess. When it’s this cold out, there’s really not much more to do than sleep, is there?”

“I could think of something, Fred.”

“That can wait until spring, Ethel, just like every year.”

“Oh, yeah, sure, it can always wait until spring, can’t it, Fred? And then spring comes along and suddenly you’re still too tired from hibernation.”

“I don’t need this kind of abuse from you, Ethel.”

“Abuse? I’m just saying I want to feel your cold touch against my scales is all.”

“Oh, sweetheart, I’m sorry. You know I get a little testy when the weather turns. Come here.”

Ethel moves her body in the tight space to lean into Fred’s embrace.

“You know, Fred, you’re right, it is a little cold in here. I think I feel a draft. Did you remember to close the rock?”


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