Hello, Internet! Cole here. This month, I’ve been faced with a rather lofty challenge: a lack of new material. Normally, I write about the major events of my life and add my own perspective to them; however, nothing remarkable enough to write about has happened this month. As a result, I’ve decided to try something a bit different: writing a short story about bees. This will be a new experience for me, and a bit of a risk on my part for that matter, so constructive criticism would be greatly appreciated.
The wind blew steadily over the field at a low pace as Hiverson worked. He buzzed from one white tulip to the next, drinking the sweet, sugary nectar from each one in turn. He’d considered going to the next field over to gather nectar from the red flowers there, but he’d decided against it. After all, he thought, the Queen put the Hive next to this field for a reason. She likes the tulips’ honey best.
To his right he saw Beeter, his best friend, flying through the air. However, because bees are mostly uniform in shape, size, and marking, he didn’t recognize Beeter at first. Watching while he worked, he eventually managed to identify Beeter by his flight pattern: an acrobatic series of loop-de-loops that more closely resembled a dance than a flight pattern. Since all worker drones derived from the Queen and thus closely resembled each other, they distinguished themselves – and identified each other – through various mannerisms.
Soon enough, their flight paths crossed each other. Beeter flew over Hiverson, doing a small zig-zag turn as he passed – a sort of greeting to Hiverson. Hiverson was always impressed by Beeter’s agility – he was the best at waggle-dances, and his flight path passed higher than those of the other bees because he just enjoyed flying that much. Hiverson wished that he could fly as high as Beeter did.
He was so busy musing over Beeter’s aerial antics that he almost didn’t notice the end of his flight path – that is, until his next flight-hop met with air rather than a blossom. He caught himself just before he hit the ground, propelling himself back into the air. A fall of that height wouldn’t kill him – he knew that – but he was shaken all the same. Pushing his anxiety back, he steered himself towards the hive to turn in his honey reserves.
After emptying his honey-stomach, Hiverson was approached by Barnabee.
“Hello, Barnabee,” Hiverson greeted. At the mention of his name, Barnabee winced. Hiverson had never been sure why, but Barnabee hated everyone’s names and preferred to use pronouns when addressing others.
“H-hello…” Barnabee responded.
“So, what brings you here? Don’t you normally spend time with Charlie?”
“Y-yes, um…” Barnabee stammered. “Ch-charlie’s… sick.”
“Y-yes, the doctors examined him and everything.”
“Will he be alright?”
“W-well, um… he… he has…” Barnabee was stammering even worse than he normally did, and he was beginning to shake.
“H-he has the Sk-skells.”
Hiverson paused, not knowing how to react. “The Skells? Are you serious?”
“Y-yes. He’s in the I-infirmary Section. They’re – they’re treating him as best they can, but-”
Hiverson didn’t know how to respond to this. Charlie had the Skells? No, that wasn’t possible. The disease had been eradicated long ago… hadn’t it? If Charlie had it, though…
“Um, so… w-what should we do?”
Hiverson responded quickly. This was a very serious matter, and all honeybees knew where to turn in case of serious matters. “Come on, Barnabee. We need to see the Queen.”