I wrote this originally for Sunday Photo Fiction, which is a story challenge based on a picture. The stories are supposed to be around 200 words. I try to stay close to that but this week it’s a bit longer, just as forewarning.
Clock Tower Jill
I called her Clock Tower Jill, even back when I was still trying to eat her. I didn’t know her real name because we never talked, of course. She was a quirky one, Clock Tower Jill.
It was July and the hot, muzzy air was hanging like a lead blanket in the forest when I first saw those long legs stepping towards me through the undergrowth. I wasn’t starving but I roared and readied myself to pounce. She picked up a stick and swung it like a bat, right into my snout. That stunned me and before I could recover, she sprinted away. It was too hot for me to run far and by the time I found her, she had reached the ruined town. I saw her at the top of the clock tower, sticking her tongue out at me.
I kept her treed up there for days, out of spite for my hurt snout. Then I realized she would eventually starve to death and I would not get to eat her anyway. So I brought her some food. It was accepted imperiously, without even a thank you. I named her Jill. She was like my pet.
After a month of living up in the tower, she came down and called to me. “You, creature. I want to go down to the lake to swim.”
I had long given up trying to eat her and I stood by to let her go.
“I want to ride you,” she said. I bristled at that, but gave in eventually, since she was my pet.
She sat on my back and held my mane while I trotted down to the lake. I stood guard while she swam and then I brought her back. She was a good pet.
“Good boy,” she said, patting my head before she went back up into her tower. “Bring me something good tonight, okay?” That rankled but I did it for her anyway since I liked having her around. And after all, she was pretty quirky, my Clock Tower Jill.