Flash Fiction: The Big Black Rabbit

There once was a beautiful woman named Susan. She died when her husband, a farmer, killed her. It was a complete accident and still, two years after this unfortunate incident, the farmer believed that. On the day he killed her, the farmer buried Susan in the forest to the south of his farm. Susan and her husband had a nine-year-old daughter called Sophia and Sophia had a white-furred cat named Mistah Thomas.

The farmer fell on hard times. One day, because he, Sophia, and Mistah Thomas fell mighty hungry, the farmer went to the forest to the south of his farm. There were rabbits there. But the farmer was wary, because there were tales about that forest. Tales that everyone in the town seemed to believe. Of a big black rabbit that lived there that ate people who tried to kill the other rabbits.

On this day that the farmer got out his hunting rifle and decided to go to the forest to the south of his farm, he assured himself that the tales were nonsense. No big black rabbits lived there that ate people who tried to kill the other rabbits. After all, he buried his beloved Susan there and there were no big black rabbits to be seen.

And so he went into that forest, and shot a rabbit. Stomach growling, he put the dead rabbit in a bag and went home as fast as he could. He imagined how happy Sophia would be if she saw that there was food to eat.

Once the farmer got back home, he called Sophia to the kitchen and put the bag with the dead rabbit inside on the kitchen table. He told Sophia what he had done and Sophia’s eyes, because she knew about the terrifying tales of the big black rabbit too, grew wide. She was scared and when her father saw this, he quickly told her that the tales were nonsense. That there was nothing to be worried about. When the farmer saw that his daughter was beginning to relax, the farmer took out the dead rabbit, and Sophia screamed.

The farmer did not understand why his daughter was screaming and took a good look at the dead rabbit he held in his right hand. He mouthed an almost inaudible no because in his hand was not a dead rabbit, but a dead white-furred cat. Mistah Thomas.

#

The next day, the farmer shook his head. He had been awake all night, sitting at that kitchen table as he tried to understand what happened the day before. Try as he might, he could not make sense of it. Sophia was in her bedroom and refused to come out no matter how much he called her and told her that he was sorry.

He was absolutely certain that the animal he shot in that forest to the south of his farm was not Mistah Thomas. It had been a rabbit. A rabbit with white fur. Not a cat. Definitely not a cat!

The farmer, still trying to make sense of what happened the day before, eventually fell asleep.

#

On the day that Sophia saw Mistah Thomas dead in her father’s hands, she ran into her bedroom, got into her bed, and began to cry. The last time she cried like that was when Mom died. She heard her father tell her that he was sorry but she did not care. Mistah Thomas, the only real friend she has ever had on the farm, was dead.

Her father eventually went away from the bedroom door, but she still cried. She stopped only when a voice, a voice that sounded like it belonged to a woman who was really old, called her name. When she saw where the voice came from, her eyes grew wide and she wanted to scream, but before she could do so, a giant black-furred paw was pressed against her mouth. The light in her bedroom was still on and she could see the thing that was in her bedroom clearly. It had black fur, big yellow eyes, two scary big teeth, and looked like a rabbit.

The big black rabbit told Sophia that she would remove her paw from her mouth if she promised not to scream. Sophia nodded, and the big black rabbit removed her paw. The big black rabbit told Sophia that her name was Eden and that she was there because her father killed one of her rabbits. Sophia told Eden that her father did not kill one of her rabbits. Instead, her father had killed Mistah Thomas, her cat. Eden nodded and told her how sorry she was that Mistah Thomas was dead. Sophia cried and Eden told her no, don’t cry.

Eden watched Sophia with a sinister smile, but Sophia didn’t see this because her face was in her hands as she cried. Eden told Sophia to look at her and when she did, Eden told her that she had magic that could make Mistah Thomas alive again if she but do one thing for her in return. When Sophia asked Eden what she had to do, Eden gave her something small that looked like a sweet. The sweet was shiny and black and Eden told Sophia that all she had to do was give this sweet to her father. Once her father ate it, he would go into the forest, and Mistah Thomas will be alive again.

Sophia was still very angry with her father, but even so, she did not want to take the sweet because she knew the tales about the big black rabbit that ate people who tried to kill rabbits to the south of their farm.

Thus, Eden felt that it was time to use her magic to show Sophia what her father had done to her mother. When Sophia saw what her father had done to Mom, she told Eden to give her the black sweet.

Image used found on Pixabay.

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