• Liz Milne

Necrobiome | By Liz Milne

She was a vibrant creature, full of life and love and lust. Hair all the colours she could find, body pierced to enhance sensation, dressed always to please only herself. He was slow, stolid, hungry. She blessed him for a butterfly moment, then flitted onward, leaving him snatching at mirages and empty space.

He killed her in late autumn and buried her in the forest, where young tree growth would, he hoped, erase all signs of his grisly cultivation, come the spring. The police couldn’t find her, couldn’t find any trace of her, and after two weeks, the watching world forgot, ever chasing the next missing she – so young, so pure, so tragic.

Her mother knew though, and prayed twice a day for an answer: daytime prayers of anguished hope, night-time prayers whispered hot, knowing and despairing and hungry for vengeance.

Blood prayers. Soul prayers.

Her words sank into the ground, sliding beneath the snow piled high on the ground, found the layer of disturbance and there they waited.

Come the spring, the mother revived interest in her daughter’s cold case, hoping it would warm along with the frozen ground. The police, weary and disbelieving, went through the motions, arranged a search.

The mother led the way, triumphant, pointed to the tree that marked the place, vivid rainbow leaves, piercings through trembling tender boughs.

Full of life and love and lust.


Liz Milne is a freelance writer and PhD student at the University of Chester. She writes stories of all lengths from micro-flash to novel. Her work can be seen at: Zero Flash, 101 Words, Visual Verse, Aphelion Webzine and Drabblr, Storgy, and SWAMP Writing, amongst others, while print credits are with Pandora’s Box and Flash: The International Short-Short Story Magazine for whom she also writes reviews. When not writing, she is bossed around by her cats who would plan world domination were it not for their lack of opposable thumbs and a disinclination to move from the warmest spot in the house.

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