Sunday Photo Fiction is a weekly challenge to write a 200-word story based on a photo prompt. Thanks to James Pyle for submitting this week’s photo.
“Step on a crack…break your mother’s back!”
Daisy heard the superstitious chant from her older cousins and believing them to be wise beyond their seven years, took care to avoid the cracks in the garden walkway. It was not always easy, especially when Mommy called to come inside for hot cookies and milk.
Inevitably, Daisy forgot to be careful. As soon as she stepped, the ground felt different under her Buster Browns. Peering downward, Daisy began to shriek. Certain her daughter had been stung by a bee, or worse, her mother rushed from the kitchen.
“Daisy, what’s wrong!” her mother cried. Daisy pointed to her foot and mumble a few words about breaking mommy’s back.
Relieved, her mother gathered Daisy in her arms. “Nothing bad will happen when you step on a crack,” her mother assured her. “Come on. I have hot cookies for you.”
Daisy wiped her eyes and followed her mother to the kitchen, no longer careful where she stepped.
As night approached, a grisly light emitted from the widening cracks in the garden path. Long, grayish fingers grasped hold of the edge. Daisy’s mother was wrong. Dreadful things do happen when you step on a crack.
This story is based on the old superstition that cracks in the pavement were portals to the underworld, and by stepping on a crack, you released the demons that lived there, bringing bad luck.