Jared opened his gift as the family sat around him in a circle. It was small, about the size of a tissue box, but they’d saved it for last. He pulled the wrapping paper off to reveal a snow globe: a plastic castle inside of a plastic dome, filled with water and artificial snowflakes. His sister Jaida nudged him. “Shake it,” she said. Jared balled his fist and glowered at Jaida. She recoiled, raising her arms instinctively in a defensive gesture. After a moment of awkward silence, Jared’s mother cleared her throat. Without taking his eyes off Jaida, Jared gave the dome a violent shake. At first, nothing happened aside from the usual plastic snowstorm. But then, when the last flake settled, a tiny king came walking out of the castle, flanked by two soldiers. He pointed a finger at Jared, then made a “come hither” gesture. Jared felt a little queasy and dizzy for a moment as the world started to spin, shift and gyrate. When Jared opened his eyes, he was standing in a castle courtyard. The king looked at him coolly. “Come with us,” he said as the two guards grabbed each of his arms. Jared looked up into the sky and barely saw the distant face of his sister, wearing a diabolical smirk.
NOTE: The brief narrative above was brought to you by TZ Books and The Bite-Size Fiction Project, created by Dave Baldwin and Sheila Lee Brown (this particular one is a Dave-story). The results of this project are bite-size story morsels for short attention spans. These tidbits are sometimes fun, sometimes weird…but always short!