Cleft

The tree grew around Gary and he didn’t struggle, he was glad to be hemmed in.

The walls shot up in growing panels and clicked into natural place,

he was enveloped in the smooth, the woody gnarls on the outside, protecting him from the elements, and a wooden smile etched into his face.

Bill had planted the seed, and when he found Gary set inside so perfect, he wished he’d hacked more heartily with his hatchet.

He imagined Gary like the hazelnut in a toffee, cut in perfect half, and the wooden smile jumped across, rooting, delving, fingers rifling in his nut.

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