Friday Flash: Pest Control

The following story also appears in my short story collection, An Optimist’s Journal of the End of Days and Other Stories, published via Venetian Spider Press.


Luckily, Katie Kuttler found the stray fairy before her father did.

He kept an industrial size can of Fairy-Be-Gone next to the comfortable, threadbare recliner in the family room. Sometimes, while watching tv in the evenings, the little pests would sneak in, attracted to the flickering light of the boob tube. Mr. Kuttler would reach down beside the chair for his secret weapon, ready the sprayer, take careful aim, and (once clear of the glowing screen) he would spray the holy hell out of them, laughing as they floundered to their deaths.

Katie, a gentle soul with a tender heart, was always upset by these encounters but dared not voice her dissent. An avid reader, she couldn’t help thinking of all the wishes and treasure lost to her father’s dislike of these harmless innocents. As the room would fill with acrid-smelling fog, each sparkling victim resembled a shower of glitter as he fell to the stained carpet below. It was enough to make the girl weep. Such lost beauty and opportunity.

However, when she saw the glistening trail in the bathroom sink, she thought quickly. Grabbing the minivac, she sucked up the precious flickering fellow, snuck past her snoring dad, and quietly opened the household door to freedom. Once in the great outdoors of her front yard, she put her face up against the vac’s clear plastic container and watched the tiny shimmering creature shout, jump up and down, and give her an incandescent finger. She grinned impishly. She’d let him go eventually, but there was no point in wasting an opportunity for free wishes from her adorable little captive, was there?

She grinned wider and returned one of the ruder gestures.

*inspired by a photo prompt from the six minute story site which I ran out of time attempting to write about.

*Image courtesy of

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