The Burial of Tomas





The land available for burial was a small plot two feet by one foot. Tomas bought it anyway figuring, worst case, he could be buried standing up.

And this is what he told people, “I’m going to be buried standing up.”

Then he died. Most people do. It was not much of a surprise that Tomas did.

But being someone who few people paid much mind to, his wife had no clue when pressed what the man’s final wishes were.

“Think he wanted to be stood up, or some such nonsense.”

The undertaker wasn’t a smart man. He was mostly in the businesses because his da wouldn’t let him go to bard college and learn minstreling, but still he wanted to do a good job. As anyone would when trying to build a life.

With no other instruction that’s what he did. He prepared Tomas’ Earthly remains to be stood up.

First he removed the decaying flesh, muscle and internal organs and fired them down to a fine powdery ash.

He boiled the bones in bleach and water until they were white as new fallen snow. Then he let them dry.

With the water he boiled the skeleton in and the ash he made from the soft bits he mixed a mortar and after posing the bones he poured the mix in on top.

It set and dried and he polished the finished product and informed the widow her husband was ready for the funeral.

The shock of the finished product killed her also.

It did not matter much to the undertaker, because he buried her under Tomas, standing up.


Author: Bryan Aiello

I call NYC home and wish the subway went everywhere and Times Square didn't suck. I saw John Turturro once. Maybe it was him. He was wearing a yellow shirt and smiled at me like he knew I knew. I am an Army vet who writes. I like characters who want more then they deserve. I like genre fiction. I love space. I love paladins. One day I might write a paladin in space story. Just you wait. The university of South Florida spit me out with a degree in creative writing and I find myself questioning the sanity of going to a school that advertises a fake beach on its brochure ever since. I intuit grammar. I Got married in 2012 We had twins in 2015. I do a lot of cooking and dog walking and ranting about the unfairness of sentience. You can follow me on Twitter: @bryaiello Wattpad: My Subreddit: My Reddit profile: Like my work? Become a patron at:

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