The challenge at Thursday Tales is to respond to an illustration with a story no less than 55 words and no more than 777. To read other stories, please click here.
Image copyright Sara Vandermeulen at DeviantArt.
The scarecrow was as miserable as any scarecrow had ever been. It wasn’t that he was lonely, oh no! He had more than enough company and that was half the trouble. He had been employed to frighten away birds but instead they came to perch on his arms and nest in his hat and roost inside his jacket. They snatched away loose threads from his hessian head to line their nests. Even the spiders regarded him as a safe haven. He knew his days were numbered.
Every time the farmer came to inspect his crops he would shake his head as flocks of crows or woodpigeons or rooks rose from the plentiful harvest spread so generously across the field. His little girl skipped beside him and always stopped to pat the scarecrow. The scarecrow liked her gentle touch and smiled through his sewn-up mouth.
The farmer said, ‘I’ll have to get rid of this old thing – it’s useless.’
The little girl’s hand flew to her mouth and she cried out.
The scarecrow’s heart sank inside his waistcoat and he struggled to keep the tears from his button eyes. Had it not been for the pole which held him ramrod straight he would have sunk to his invisible knees and begged for mercy.
Her father looked at her and saw her sadness. ‘We’ll take him home and put him in the garden,’ he said.
‘He’ll like it there,’ she said and smiled a watery smile.
The scarecrow’s spirit filled with happiness – he wanted to dance and shout with elation. A garden would be a wondrous place to live, sheltered and safe from the raging winds and beating sun, and the little girl could visit him every day. Life was good!