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Tree of Life -- FWG Flash Fiction for 3/25/2022

This entry could be the prologue to a novel I want to write someday. I've written it in my head many times. Maybe I'll get it down in bits someday.

The prompt for it is:

Tree of Life

Five thousand years. That's what the dendochronologists estimated the tree’s age to be. But I knew any number applied to that tree was meaningless.

I know because I ate of its fruit so many millenia ago that time has no meaning for me anymore. I and my cohort of the Fallen broke the unbreakable rule when we plucked the round, red, juicy orbs from its branches. All on a dare.

The One With Many Names led us to our demise with a smile on his face. He knew full well the consequences, as did we all. Which is worse, to lead others to destruction, or to follow blindly into its surety?

Now we run and hide our gifts, each pretending to be one of these weak, infernal humans while the Sons of Gabriel hunt each of us down. Every day, I ask myself whether an eternity of damnation would be any worse than another day in this guise.

Some chose to make themselves gods to the ignorant. They fell quickly, after only a millenia or two.

Others exploited the lowly people for financial gain, amassing untold wealth through time and patience. Those held sway until modern times when technology became able to track the movement of money, drugs, and slaves. The Sons, through human agents in law enforcement, have brought most of them down.

Only the lowliest of us have eluded judgement, choosing instead the fetters of humankind over the glory we once embodied. Still, the question haunts.

Tomorrow I may decide. Tonight I endure.

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