Flash Fiction: Brother Code (244 words)

Trent arrived to breakfast looking as if someone had thrown deep purple paint in his face, and he’d been too timid to scrub it out of the corner between his eye and his nose. And he’d missed a large bit hiding under his eyebrow.

It took his four older brothers one moment to realize some jackum had punched him in the face, one more to snap their eyebrows down into heavy glares, and another to shove their chairs back from the table.

“Who did it?” the oldest, Kashel demanded.

“Don’t worry about it,” Trent told him. He climbed onto his chair, and tucked in, deliberately ignoring Stuard as he strode into the room.

“Don’t worry about it,” Stuard echoed, announcing it to the whole room, with his shoulders squared and his chest popped out. He didn’t look at anyone has he crossed the room in the widest steps his small legs would allow.

Kashel blinked, and looked back at the others.

“I already got revenge,” Stuard continued. “I beat up the boy who beat up my brother. Just like it says in the Brother Code.”

Climbing into his chair, he tucked his napkin in his lap, picked up his fork in one hand and his knife in the other, prepared to attack his eggs and toast. Then he turned to look at each of them, and a purple bruise painted down his nose.

“He won’t do it again,” Stuard said firmly.

Trent smiled behind his first forkful.



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