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The Weed

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The crickets trilled loudly underneath the starry night sky. Nearby, a pale pink flower was slowly opening its petals, emerging into the cool moonlight that bathed the garden.
The garden was filled with many beautiful flowers, all organized in beds classified by type and color. There were irises, lilies, and tulips; roses and buttercups, and bushes trimmed into dinosaurs. Nothing was out of place. Nothing except for the lovely pink flower in the middle of the garden.
The next morning, the gardener walked in and saw the elegant pink beauty in the middle of the garden.
"What is this weed doing in the middle of MY garden?" He practically exploded. He stared at it for a moment, thinking. "I know what I'll do," he muttered as he hopped into his beat up Chevy and headed for the garden store.
When he pulled his truck into the garden, the back was filled with pink and yellow flowers. He immediately put on gloves and unloaded the truck, setting all the new flowers near the pink one that had bloomed overnight. He started digging.
Hours later, the new flowerbed was nearly finished. The pink and yellow flowers were woven into an even pattern with the sweet pink plant at the center.
"All it needs now is a little pruning. That weed still doesn't look quite right." He muttered as he picked up his shears and began snipping off petals and leaves. A half hour passed and the pink flower was now trim and neat, matching all the others; except, it's petals were dropping as though it was weary and abused. The gardener was too busy to notice, moving on to prune and water the other plants in the garden. As soon as he had finished, he left, locking up the garden behind him. As the night went on, the tender pink flower closed upon itself. The pale pink slowly flushed to a deep blood red. As the sun began to rise, thorns pushed their way out of the stem; pale pink blood was dripping off the edge of each thorn. The young plant had not bloomed to be cut up and molded to the shape of the others around it. It would only thrive if left to grow and continue to bloom the way it had originally.
Less than an hour after the plant finished its conversion, the gardener pulled in the drive and unlocked the gate, walking over to survey his handiwork from the day before. His eyes grew wide as he bent down to take a closer look at the plant that had taken the place of the pink flower. He reached out and gently touch a thorn. Blood quickly began dripping from his finger, pooling in droplets on the dark earth beneath the plant. Poison from the thorn began circulating through his body. The gardener fell to his knees in the soil, gasping for breath. He began convulsing as the poison quickly spread through his whole body. Sweat shone on his forehead; his lips were turning blue. It took ten minutes, and then his body lay still. The thorny plant unfurled to its former beauty, poison still dripping from its thorns.



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