Thanks to the advice of a friend, I revised my Fox and the Grapes satire, removing it completely from the fable to give me more room to play with it. Here is the first draft:
The Alabaster Grapes
Not so long ago, there was a great vineyard surrounded by steep hills and cliffs. The grapes were sweet and tasty, each grape slightly different. It wasn’t a perfect vineyard, for perfection is a myth, but most of the animals were content, except for a fox and an owl
The fox and owl had heard that somewhere in the vineyard were the legendary Alabaster Grapes, a grape with the perfect flavor. For them, only this would do.
The fox and owl searched the vineyard for the Alabaster Grapes. They sampled from every vine, some grapes plump and purple, others a green or gold approaching the alabaster they were searching for. Though they were all delicious, they did not satisfy them.
When the owl settled on the bunch of grapes that he liked best, the fox became filled with anger.
“How can you settle!?” Demanded the fox. “Only the Alabaster Grapes are worthy.”
“The Alabaster Grapes are just a legend, my friend,” said the owl. “We must enjoy the best we have.”
“No! I will never back down, and these inferior grapes are in my way. They are now my enemy.”
“How can grapes be an enemy?”
“They are my enemy!”
“But they’re delicious,” said the owl as he ate a tasty grape.
The fox was so enraged by his friend’s wisdom and pragmatism that he chose to teach him a harsh lesson. The fox grabbed a branch from Mankind’s Fiery Flower, the one that brought heat and destruction.
The fox set the owl’s favorite grapevine aflame with the Flower. “You dare settle? Now you get nothing! Good day, sir!” And his friend’s weeping enraged the fox even more. He set every plant in the vineyard on fire, watching with satisfaction as they burned.
But the Fiery Flower burns all in its path. The flames spread red across the land. All the animals except those living high in the verdant hills were burned to death or fled far from the vineyard. Even the owl died in the flames, but the fox felt no guilt for his friend’s gruesome death. He watched from his borrow on a high cliff, where the fire would not touch him.
And when the fires went out, all the vineyard was destroyed except for one grapevine, which was covered with white ash. “At last!” Cried the fox. “The Alabaster Grapes!” The fox came down from the verdant hills and took a bite of one of the ashy grapes. It was dry and bitter, the flavor of desolation.
“This is fine,” said the fox between choking bites. “This is just fine.”
If you have any feedback, please comment below. Like with all of my stories, I strive for perfection.