Cliff grasped the dark green moss-covered log with both hands, hoisting it onto his right shoulder. Black beetles crawled over his fingers and up his sleeves. He lost his grip and the log crashed into a grove of aspen saplings.
There was a high-pitched squeal as something small on two legs scurried away, kicking up a trail of golden dust.
Cliff removed his brown shirt and shook out the beetles. They hit the rocky ground like a dumped bowl of nut-casings.
He tugged his shirt back on and lifted the log once again to his shoulders. A few of the saplings came with his grip and dangled near his ankles. With the sun behind him, he set off towards his cabin leaving a trail of the sparkling dust in his wake.
# [scene change]
An hour later a warm yellow glow of a window met his gaze. Dusk had settled in around him as he trekked home. As he neared the cedar log cabin a faint whiff of apple pie fill his nostrils.
Beth must have eaten already and probably fed the kid before me too, he thought.
Cliff tossed the log at the foot of the mountainous pile of wood to the left of the front door that he still had to cut. It crashed and there was a whimper as it struck the other logs and bounced until it settled, making a hollow noise with each impact.
Delivery was in one week.
“Ugh!” He kicked at the pile of logs and his toe hit a sapling. The dust formed a mushroom cloud above the pile of logs and dissipated quickly.
“Honey? Are you okay?” A thin woman with pencil-straight blonde hair called from the open window by his left shoulder, her voice quavered.
“Yes. I’m fine. I just don’t think we can make delivery this period.” He ran his fingers across his shaven head and dug his fingernails in. “Ugh. And you ate without me.” His eyes became slits as he glared at her.
“Daddy?” A young boy’s voice was heard from beneath the windowsill. “I made pie with Momma.”
“Shhh,” said his mother. “Go clean up those saplings in the log pile Petey. You know your Dad likes to keep things neat.”
“That’s right. Young boys shouldn’t be cooking anyways.”
“He likes it Cliff.”
“Beth please. You shouldn’t keep him inside all day. He needs to learn how to be a man.”
The ten-year-old boy bounced quickly on his thin legs towards the log pile.
He’s a damned twig.
“It’s alive daddy look.” He pointed at one of the saplings.
“Not anymore son.” Cliff said with a forced calm. “I pulled them out of the ground an hour ago.”
“No it is alive.” Pete held the three saplings and dragged them towards the fenced-in garden. “I am going to plant them!”
“No-” Cliff hesitated. Maybe this is a good thing. A sapling is a tree. Trees become logs. Maybe he will take over the business after all. “Alright son. But don’t put it too close to my fruit trees.”
Pete scampered off, trailing the saplings. Golden dust swirled behind him.
[Feedback would be lovely :)]