Leonard's Garden

Submitted into Contest #31 in response to: Write a short story about someone tending to their garden.... view prompt



Leonard walked out to his garden all bounce in his step. Waking up to tend to his sweet little vegetable garden was the way he felt accomplished. It started his day and was all he really needed to feel life was worthwhile.

Leonard lived on the outskirts of a small town in Leon, France. Leonard in Leon France. His neighbors would chuckle and comment on how silly this fact was. But in all honesty, Leonard was not a complicated man. He liked his life, his house, and his plants. Most of all them because while everyone would hustle into town every day to sit around in a cafe and smoke for hours drinking coffee in order to pay for their life, Leonard would sit and smoke contently in his garden. he would watch them all go by, rushing along on their bikes and mopeds.

"Bonjour Leonard!" they would wave.

Rarely would he lookup. He was usually too consumed into his task. He would simply wave a hand in the air to show he heard them, sometimes paired with a grunt, but he would not deviate from the taste at hand. And that was, investigating which plants were ready to put into his dîner that evening.

Today the bette a carde suisse looked particularly fresh. One more day in the dirt and they would wilt and be tragic; wasted. Leonard, dug his shovel into the soft earth and began peeking around the edges of the root vegetables.

"Ahhh," he sighed when examining the navets. "Parfait!" he exclaimed. Eagerly excavating them for the Earth and placing them gently, one at a time into the basket beside the garden. All he needed now was some of the romarin cut from the box of herbs he kept in his kitchen and his simple meal would be complete.

Happily, he thought of stopping into the boulangerie down the way that he could buy a fresh baguette and a bottle of vino to complete the table. His thoughts were elsewhere when he heard a rustle in the leaves beside the bette a carde suisse plants he was currently holding, preparing to cut.

Instinctively, Leonard withdrew his hand.

"Beurk!" he exclaimed. Very cautiously, after deciding to stand his ground, this was his garden, after all, he pushed the leaves of the plants aside.

"Serpent." Leonard stared down at the large black snake resting placidly amidst his vegetable garden. This would never do. He stared at the snake who knew he was looking back at him. A power play. Whose garden was it?

Determined to stake his claim, Leonard went to his watering can. He brought it over and emptied it on the snake who hissed, peevishly, slithering from its warm spot, out to the sunlight to dry out.

"Ah-ha!" exclaimed Leonard victoriously.

But Leonard had left his door open in his excitement to visit his garden, and without further ado, the snake slithered it's way inside, through the open door.

"Non!" Leonard was yelling trying to scare the creature out of his home. What a disaster. He ran into the house, hot in pursuit, only to observe...nothing. The serpent was nowhere to be found.

Where had it gone? Lurking in some dark corner no doubt. In an hour's time the heat of the day would wilt the beautiful greens he was planning on cutting. Leonard stood there, wondering what he should do?

It only took him a minute to decide. He turned on his heel and returned to his garden. The snake could have his house...for now. But Leonard would not sacrifice his beautiful plants, his morning in the sun, or his ideas for dinner.

If the snake had not been simply a figment of his imagination, he would still be there after the morning pruning was complete, and Leonard would deal with him them.

Happily, Leonard pulled out his trimming shears and returned to his plants. Humming a soft tune as he worked, thinking again about which vino to choose from the corner boulangerie.

March 01, 2020 14:29

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