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The Hungry Earth

·303 words·2 mins
Short Story Deadlines For Writers

“What’s that noise?”

“…I was asleep. You’re the worst brother ever!”

“It sounds like chewing.”

“Don’t be stupid, there’s nothing … wait, what is that?”

“I don’t know, but it woke me up. I can’t see anything out the window.”

“It’s stopped…”

“I’m more scared now, should we wake up Mom and Dad?”

“No, they’ll just tell us it was nothing. Go back to sleep.”

“Has anyone seen Jasper?”

“I haven’t, Dad, but James and I thought we heard … something … last night.”

“Damn. Listen, boys, you need to stay inside. Tell your mother that I’ve gone to fill the ditch.”

“Where have those grandkids run off to?”

“Oh, they’re adventuring out back. I’m sure they would love to have Grandpa James go fetch them for dinner.”

“I see how it is. No worry, I need a good walk anyway.”

“What are you two doing near that thing? Come back over here!”

“It’s just a ditch, Grandpa, it’s not dangerous.”

“Yes it is. More dangerous than you could know. Now come over here.”

“If it’s dangerous, why’s it not filled it up?”

“My Pa tried. I tried. Your Dad still tries. It never takes.”

“Never takes?”

“Ya. Sometimes a few days, sometimes a month. But always, it just shows back up, and in the same place. Usually we knew it was open again when things started to go missing.”


“Pets mostly, but yes.”

“You think maybe there’s a cave underneath it?”

“Nah. Nothing but rock after you get through a foot or so of dirt. Come on you two, it’s getting dark, and dinner’s almost ready. Promise me you’ll stay away from this place.”


“Yeah, sure.”

“I’m serious boys. You need to stay away from this place. Things have a way of getting gone out here. Come on, lets go.”