Neighborly Rivals

And why to avoid being the one thing that unites them.


Witch challenged Spider to a race.  “Whoever gets to Lighting Pine first wins.  If you lose, you move, and stop scaring off my customers.”

“Ha!  I’m twice your size with six more legs—I’ll win easily.  If you lose, you move, and stop scaring off my dinner.”

At first light, they began.

Spider spotted a meat cake in the path.  She scoffed, until she saw the candle—a magical mesmerizing candle—and froze.

Snickering, Witch ran right into a web trap, becoming hopelessly entangled.

Hunter, spying as usual, meandered to Lightning Pine.  When Spider and Witch finally arrived, he said, “I win.  Since you both lost, you both move, and stop scaring off my game.”

Witch and Spider exchanged a glance.  Witch stunned Hunter.  Spider ate him.

They got along much better after that.

*          *          *

“You would’ve missed me.”

Witch harrumphed.  “Won’t miss him.


“Don’t talk with your mouth full.”

This was supposed to be an entry into this week’s Grammar Ghoul Press Shapeshifting 13 writing challenge, but the word count for that has to be exactly 52 words.  Once I found a story that matched the adorable photo prompt (below), I realized there was no way I could do it in 52 words.  So I decided if I could do it in 150 words or less (or less? Who am I kidding?), I’d still post it even if I can’t enter it in the contest.

Click here to see the other stories that actually DID follow the rules and use only and exactly 52 words.

spider cake IMG_5134
© Jen Brunet

6 thoughts on “Neighborly Rivals

    • Thanks! I’ve been posting a lot of very sad, serious stories, so I wanted to try something a little more lighthearted. I didn’t expect this ending either, actually. The original idea had the witch tricking the spider with the magic candle (since that was the photo prompt) and winning, but I thought the witch would be less likable if she was the only cheater — if they both tried to trick the other one, that would be funnier.

      Liked by 1 person

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