The Dead Tree: Party

**Brief Excerpt: Subject to change pending editing.**

One morning, I slipped on my rubber boots on and decided to walk the property line for something to do. The grass was wet from heavy dew, and the temperature was still quite brisk, so I pulled on a sweatshirt. A heavy fog hung in dense ribbons, growing thicker as I reached the lower part of the front yard.

The area surrounding the dead tree was littered with empty beer cans, a couple of broken wine bottles and an assortment of other pieces of trash. Apparently, a party had taken place there during the previous night.
Muttering to myself, I stalked back up the hill to the house and rummaged around the pantry for a garbage bag.

Adelaide gave me a questioning glance.

"I guess there was a party in our front yard last night, and no one bothered to invite me," I said, scowling.

She shook her head. "Unfortunately that tree has become a hot party spot for teens over the years."

"It's a dead tree. What could anyone possibly find entertaining about getting drunk around a Goddamn tree?" I huffed. "Don't the kids in this town have anything better to do? Egg a house? Toilet paper someone's yard? Knock over tombstones? Smash mailboxes?"

She snorted. "Oh, they do that, too. But it's not nearly as thrilling as braving the Legend of The Dead Tree."

"The Legend of The Dead Tree? You're kidding, right? I can hardly wait to hear the rest of this story," I said, peering at her through squinted eyes.

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Lori L. Clark

Lori L. Clark currently resides in Hazelwood, MO with three rescue dogs. When Lori isn't listening to the voices in her head, waiting for the next creative inspiration to strike, she also loves to read, run, paint pet portraits and save dogs. Email Lori at

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