When Frankia returned home she was very excited to put her new plant with the others she has in her living room area. She put them on the shelf against the wall of the most lighted area of the room, near the window. In all, she owned five plants, one Watermelon Coleus, one Calatheas Rosie, two Venus Fly Traps, and the most alluring, the Sliver Leaf plant.

The excitement was too much for her to hold back once she arranged the Sliver Leaf upon the shelf. Quieting her nerves, Frankia ran her index finger slowly, from the tip of a leaf down to the small crook and center of the plant. It was warm there and for a plant that has not been out in the sun all day, that was unusual. It was so hot near the inner stem of the leaf that Frankia thought to get her thermometer from the bathroom first aid kit to record the temperature. But as she thought to leap away from the plant to commit to the task of getting the kit, her body did not respond or move from where she stood stroking the plant. All of a sudden, her legs felt a little weak and she stumbled back ultimately undoing herself from the plant’s grasp. What just happened? Befuddled, Frankia backed up four feet from the plant. She went into the kitchen where her purse sat open on the counter to retrieve the serum and plant informational pamphlet.

The pamphlet title read, “More on you plant and how to take care of it.” It continued, “Dracaena Valiveal, is a very unique flora that also requires special care than other plant life…” this was the first paragraph and she paused wondering what care is needed other than good ole sunshine and water. “When you welcome your plant into your home, prepare the serum with these instructions. Eight ounces of water, two drops of the serum provided, and one egg. It can be an egg from any animal species.” Strange…for an egg to be used to nourish a plant. She had chicken eggs in the fridge. So she went about preparing the concoction for the Sliver plant in her kitchen, blending it in her small nutribullet cup. Subsequently, other than what instruction was provided, she had not thought about how to administer the dose and the rest of the pamphlet only had decorative photography of the plant.

Feeding the plant, she simply poured the contents on the soil and watched as the liquid absorbed into the dark earth and mire. She was very mindful this time about touching the plant, though the lure to touch and become impassioned was still ever-present. The words of the store clerk resonated in her mind “…do not touch…” made her quite conscious of her attraction. Once she fed the Sliver, she moved to fill the small plastic watering can for the other plants and provide care. She thumbed through the leaves of the vibrantly colored Watermelon Coleus and moved through the house to get ready for bed.

The brilliant moonlight trickled into the living room area, across the carpeted floor, and highlighted the plants on the shelf. All was silent, sitting in their pots content from their water on their leaves, stem, and soil. There was a shudder in the terra-cotta pot of the Sliver Leaf. It made a sound like a faint squeal, too low for mortal ears. Inaudible. Stealthily, the Sliver stretched one leaf to touch the nearest plant, the flamboyant Watermelon Coleus. One blade from the Sliver curled sluggishly around the Coleus’ stem, while another blade petted the top of the plant, as though it was comforting through the embrace. Instead, there was a terrible slurping sound as the Sliver sucked up the life force of the Coleus. Subsequently, within a few minutes, the Sliver made a bird-like chirping sound that crescendos into a boisterous, indecipherable, and otherworldly screech.


This original blog post was written and copyrighted by Juana M. Gumbs. All rights are reserved by her in January 2021 (C)


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