With every fiber in his being, he reached towards the light. He couldn’t see it, but he could feel it, the warm glow of sunlight above him.
He felt the dirt and soil that buried his feet, imprisoning him.
He remembered being a man, lost in the witch’s forest. He remembered the horrifying transformation as skin became bark and arms became branches.
He didn’t sense the witch as she walked her orchard, reinforcing the spell she’d placed on the trees. It was cruel to make them believe they’d once been human, but it shaped them better than any topiary saw.

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