Thursday, March 2, 2017

Microstory 529: What Happened to the Flowers?


Earlier this week, this year’s Fontane University graduates were ceremoniously walking down Fontane Hill, as is tradition. The symbolic idea behind this practice is to teach recent graduates one simple life lesson: that it’s hard. Walkers are encouraged to admire the beautiful flora on their way down, but to be careful, because the trek is treacherous. Most walkers lose focus on this rather quickly, and end up just concentrating on holding their balance. The school isn’t proud of the number of sprained ankles every year, but also notoriously assumes no responsibility. What they did not count on was how this particular ceremony would be different. There were more injuries this year than the last five years combined, because something was happening to the wildlife. Something that never had before, and cannot be explained.

According to numerous reports, the plants and flowers around the walkers were dying before their very eyes. They could see the petals wilt and turn to dust in a matter of seconds. This surprised enough people to send them tumbling down the rest of the hill, harming those who were too far along to have even noticed. The flora was dying and disintegrating in a somewhat predictable pattern...downwards, but not consistently enough to trace this bizarre turn of events to a source. Authorities initially believed it to be the result of some elaborate prank, but no substance known to man is capable of pulling something like this off. There was talk of a solar flare, underground gas pockets, and even human pheromones, but none of these comes close to being valid, let alone verified. Botanists and other scientists have already traveled to Fontane from all over the world, looking for answers. The Fontane Freesheet will update its readers as more information comes. For now, the question on everybody’s minds is, what happened to the flowers?

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