Afraid of What?

Another fear-related prompt (write about an unusual fear).  Playing with these is really helping me get ready for NaNo.

**

“Trees,” Ryan said, without looking up from the datapad on which he was typing.  When Donna made a curious sound, he did look up.

She was looking at him with an expression of complete surprise.  “How… can you be afraid of trees?”

He set the datapad on the console.  “I grew up at Windstar Station,” he said, shrugging.  “The first time that I saw a forest – a real forest, not one in a book – I was curious enough to explore it.”  He shrugged.  “I got lost.”

Donna blinked at him for a moment.  Then, she nodded.  “When you put it that way, it actually makes sense to be afraid of trees,” she said.

“It doesn’t help that my father told me about trees that could eat people or, sometimes, do even worse things,” Ryan said, as he took up his datapad again.  “I never could figure out if he was just trying to keep me from doing it again or if he was serious.”

Robin grimaced.  Ryan did not need to know that his father was being perfectly serious about man-eating trees.  In a soft voice, he said, “I’m afraid of spiders.”

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