This is the first story I tried for the Third Anual Valentiny Day Writing contest, sponsored by Susana Leonard Hill over at her wonderful blog. The word count had to be 214 or less, which was a challenge, but surprisingly fun and clarifying. I might use a strict word count in the future to figure out the bare bones of stories without all that extra verbiage. 

I really liked this little snip of a story, but tragically, I had only skimmed the instructions (typical) and missed the part that the story needed to be about Valentine's Day, not just a hopeful love story. 

Still, I want to share it. I'll probably develop this a bit more in the future. 



I want to fly.

They say, “no, you’re a mouse, it can’t be done.”

But it’s all I think about.

I watch the moon, weightless and huge, soaring across the night.

Then I see him: A mouse with wings! Flapping and free! My heart rushes.

I climb the tallest tree, racing away from the ground, and cling to the tip-top swaying branches.

I wave and call to the fabulous flying mouse. “I am a bat,” he says, settling beside me. “But that’s a lot like a mouse.”

We talk about life, above and below the ground, and stare at the mysterious stars. We sing with the crickets in the cool, flowery breeze. It’s wonderful to have a friend, but still, I want to fly.

“I will carry you!” he says.

It doesn’t work. His wings aren’t strong enough for us both.

I build my own wings. Stiff grass, twigs, and wide oak leaves. But my arms don’t reach, and I never leave the ground.

He finds it for me: a bright scrap, light as air, and a long, strong string. He helps me tie the right knots, tight around my body, and grabs the ends of the string with his curled toes.

“Hang on!”

And we run, and he flaps, and then…


We fly together, floating on the wild wind beneath the brilliant sky.