I owe two FFFs, so here’s the first one! My goal for the year is the write 50 flash fictions. I don’t know if I’ll keep this up next year, but it’s a fun challenge in the meantime and a great way to get over my “I can’t write short fiction” fear.
What is flash fiction? It’s an itty bitty story, generally under 1,000 words or 3 printed pages. Fresh fantasy and sci fi flash fiction every Friday!
*Please pardon grammar whoopsies. They will be fixed when this story is published in a collection later this year.
“The Pegasus and the Princess”
A Fantasy Flash Fiction
K. D. Jones
Wind swept over the meadow, rippling the tall, green grass about the young princess’ legs. Her mother clutched her hand. “Careful. This grass is nearly as tall as you, little one! You’ll trip!”
“I saw a unicorn!” The princess pointed to the deep blue sky, squinting against the bright sunshine warming her skin.
“Don’t be silly. Unicorns haven’t existed for more than a century.”
“But I saw one!” The princess tugged on her mother’s hand, but the queen held firm.
“Come now, daughter. We’re going to be late for dinner.”
Later that night, when the moon was high in the sky and the princess was tucked away in her bed, she awoke to a happy jingling sound. A shadow moved beyond the curtains swaying on her balcony, and she climbed out of bed, rubbing her eyes as she went to see what was outside.
She walked out into the night and gasped. “You are real!”
The Pegasus, a beautiful white horse with magnificent pearlescent wings and a spiral horn made of sparkling crystal, neighed and pawed at the marble floor. Delicate silver bells hung from crimson ribbons tied to its long, silvery mane. I am real, the Pegasus said, its lilting voice echoing inside the princess’ head.
“You can speak!”
Through magic, replied the Pegasus. I only appear to those who believe. As a reward for your faith, I can grant you a wish. What is dearest to your heart?
The princess thought about what she’d like. “I’d love to fly!”
And so you shall. The Pegasus knelt, and the princess, giddy with excitement, climbed atop the sloped back of the Pegasus.
Hold on, said the Pegasus. The princess grabbed two handfuls of its mane before the Pegasus bounded into the sky.
They flew among wisps of moon-kissed clouds and stars that sparkled like diamonds. The princess couldn’t believe her eyes, and she laughed in wonder at the marvels she saw. They flew all night, and when the sun at last tinged the sky pink, the Pegasus returned her to her balcony at the castle.
“Will I see you again?” asked the princess.
If you keep believing in magic. The Pegasus turned and leapt into the sky, the music of its bells growing fainter and fainter.
The princess watched it go until it was a speck on the horizon. Sighing, she climbed back into bed and dreamed of the wind whipping her face, dreamed of laughing with such profound joy at the freedom of flying.
When she awoke, buttery sunshine covered her curtains, and the maids were coming in to start their morning chores. Her mother, clad in silk and jewels, swept into the room and sat upon her bed. “Dearest, you’ve slept in. Your tutors will be waiting.”
The princess sighed dreamily. “I had the best dream.”
“What did you dream about?”
“I dreamed I rode a winged unicorn—a Pegasus—and we flew all night!”
“That sounds like a marvelous dream.”
“A dream,” the princess murmured. “I guess it wasn’t real, after all.”
She swore she heard the distant ringing of silver bells.
Or maybe it was real, or still could be real, if she never stopped believing in magic.