031. Eating Her Words. Diane Arrelle

Jack ran for his life.

Without missing a step, he looked back at the bean stalk reaching into clouds.  He clenched the golden harp in his hand and listened to the golden eggs bumping each other in his knapsack.

Finally, he stopped running to catch his breath, amazed that he’d made it down the stalk so far ahead of the giant.  He stood, panting, the sweat soaking his clothes, and he heard the mocking voice of his mother echoing in his mind. “You traded the cow for beans! I must have turned a trick with an idiot the night you were conceived.”

He remembered how she had thrown the beans out the window and how she’d told him that he was dumber than dirt, how he’d never amount to anything, how she should’ve seen that specialist at the edge of the woods the moment she found out she was with child. 

Well, she’d eat those words now, he thought as the gold harp gleamed red in the sunset. Oh, yeah, he remembered, she’d never eat anything… ever again. He thought about her body back in the shack they’d lived in and the axe he had used to shut her up.

The axe! He started running again until he reached home.  Avoiding the largest coagulating puddles on the warped wooden floor, he grabbed the axe and ignored her crumpled form.  He was no dummy, he thought with grim satisfaction. He’d showed her.

He ran back outside and looked up at the giant ass and legs descending the huge swaying stalk. Swinging the axe, he chopped at that oversized vine making it vibrate wildly with each stroke. Then he stood there and watched as the giant lost his grip and plummeted down, realizing too late, he should have moved out of the way.

Jack woke. He was stark naked on a plate of sliced vegetables as a huge fork shoved him from side to side. An incredibly loud voice bounced off the surrounding stone walls. “Stop playing with your food, you moron. I’ve told you a million times, humans spoil if they die. Now, stop playing, you dumb lout and eat your dinner. It’s bad enough you fell off that stalk and split your pants, too bad it wasn’t your head. Are you listening to me?”

Jack started to shake, until he looked up into the tear filled eyes of a preteen-aged giant. As their gaze met, the voice continued to berate the gigantic youth.  Jack whispered, “Wanna shut her up. Wanna make her eat her words?”

“Oh, God, yes!” the bigger boy sobbed.

Jack pointed to the poker next to the fireplace and smiled.  “I made my momma eat her words!”

“… and you’ll never amount to anything worthwhile, I swear you’re worse than your father!” the mother giant droned on.

Jack’s new giant friend put down his fork, nodded, and smiled back. 

When his mother turned her back to him, the young giant got up and headed for the fireplace.

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