The flowers arched and eased towards the sun, their tips whispering with the golden fuzz of pollen and light. A dull, electric buzz filled the air as fat striped bumblebees hovered over the bright blooms.
From the other side of the house, the metallic garage door slowly opened, squeaking and rattling on its old hinges. It pulled slowly upwards to reveal a pair of sweating and swollen ankles, loose, moth-like skin and then, finally, there in the wide-gaped darkness, stood a heavy set woman, already out of breath.
“Damn garage,” she wheezed while trying to attach a straw hat to her head. “Always so loud.” The hat smelled of dead bugs and fly wings but she was impartial to such things, huffing and shuffling her way out of the garage as she gathered a small arsenal of garden tools.
Her joints creaked and cracked and threatened to give out if she insisted on continuing on in this manner. Her face drew red from mild exertion. Sweat trickled down her brow and landed in great grey spots on the driveway.
“Damn—” she tossed the tools onto the ground and leaned against the front step railing to catch her breath. “—garden,” she said wiping at her sagging mouth with the back of her arm. She took a hobbled step into the grass and fell to her knees.
“Oh, god!” her knees cried out. “What have we done to deserve this?”
With great effort the woman clenched the green grass and pulled one leg out from underneath her girth followed by the other. The hat dove from her head, making a break for it. She stretched and reached for it before it got away, her hands clapping and grasping past her overhanging stomach. “Damn sun!” she said, squinting her deep set eyes and piggy nose and recapturing her hat, much to its dismay. “Damn flowers.”
She steadied herself against the concrete garden pavers as she zeroed in on the source of her hatred. “We thought your yard could do with some color,” she sneered in a high falsetto voice. “Bullshit.”
She took up the spade and dug it deep into the earth. She lifted a tiny, budding rose bush. She sniffed its naked roots. Her tongue darted out and licked at it curiously and then, with a grunt, she tossed it into the bucket.
The flowers shivered in fear. The Petunias swayed and reached towards their next door neighbors, the Marigolds.
“We love you!” the Petunias said.
“You have the most beautiful children!” the Marigolds answered between tears.
The spade smiled its teeth and pulled them apart.
“We’ll never forget you!” the Petunias said before their voices were silenced forever.
The Dahlias cried out desperately, “Help us! Will someone please help us?”
A deep, thick voice from underneath the bushel of colorful heads said: “I will help you.” The nearby plants moved aside slightly, carefully so as to not draw any more attention. A nettled, aged weed poked his head out, tasting the sun. He inched forward. “Leave it to me,” he said, spreading his arms wide.
The plants extended their roots, trying to resist her, but the bucket was quickly filling with corpses. The woman was gathering a rhythm now, scooping and tugging, pulling and pushing. She approached the weed. He made himself bigger and broader. He made his stingers stingier and he sharpened his teeth, fiercely baring them as the woman pulled the flowers that had given him shelter.
The flowers screamed a tortuous scream as their heads were chopped off with a single slice. It was then that the weed reached out and struck, his nettles pushing themselves deep into the woman’s hand. He’d cleanly hit his mark.
“Dammit!” the woman said, dropping the flowers on the grass. She inspected her hand and pulled out the sticky needles. She waved the spade in small circles in front of the weed. “You’re a goner.”
The weed straightened up tall. If he was going to die, he was going to die with honor. The woman pressed the spade against the dirt at the base of his body; she lifted herself onto her hip and put her weight behind it.
In one swift movement she pushed down on the handle and pierced the weed’s side. His lifeblood spewed out, filing the hole where he had lived. “I have failed,” he moaned.
“Gottcha, damn weed,” the woman said, tossing him aside.
“What can we do?” the flowers cried out. “Who will save us?”
“Perhaps I can help,” said a fat honeybee, hovering nearby.
“You?” the flowers said. “What can a small bee do against a monster such as this?”
“I don’t know, but let me try,” the bee said. He rubbed his pollen covered hands together and gave his great behind one last shake.
The woman wiped at her sweaty, sagging face and steeled herself to finish the job she had come here to do.
“Hurry!” the flowers squeaked. “We don’t have much time!”
The bee fluttered his wings, lifting himself higher into the air. He hunched his shoulders and dove quickly and quietly towards the fat woman. “Goodbye and good luck!” he cried as he plunged his stinger deep within the undulating rolls of the woman’s neck.
“Dammit!” the woman said. She twisted her head left and right, struggling to find the culprit that had caused such pain. “Damn bees!” she roared, flailing her hands above her head and swatting at air.
She clawed at her neck, separating the great rolls of fat, trying to find the stinger. But it was too late. Her breath began to quicken. Her pulse began to shorten. Her fingers and tongue began to swell.
“Dawmn,” she muffled, her eyes swollen and her vision black. She fell forwards, the front of her head hitting squarely against the concrete pavers.
“Hurray!” the flowers cried. “We have defeated the terrible beast!”