Hey all, Dani here.
And I’m back with day two of the #MayBookPrompt challenge. This is being hosted by @emotionaly.inconstant and @thesarahdoughty on Instagram and on WordPress, which works better for me because I could not fit my responses in a small photo.
While the story for day one was quick and easy to write, this one took a little more time and effort. I think that’s the great thing about these prompt choices; they are so many different options for them and they inspire so many possibilities. I think I might need to play around with this one some more in future, but feel free to tell me what you think.
Day 2 is: Desperation
She had seen this scenario so many times she could no longer recount them all. The lonely, the reclusive, the shy, the detached, and even the hopeful, they all sought out her cottage in the woods. In the end she welcomed them all, even the doubters and the cynical, for in the end if they opened themselves to the possibilities then they found what they most desired.
Today’s visitor sat in his seat, fidgeting with the small satchel he carried. He was nervous but the glimmer of hope in his eyes had carried him past the hazards along the path. Good, that showed he was open to her methods. The worst were those who had lost that sense of purpose, those who no longer held faith in chance or fate or a belief that a happy ending was within their grasp.
“Did you bring what I asked for?” she questioned, not even bothering with the niceties of asking his name or even needing to know anything about him. He was here looking for a way to his heart-mate, the person he was meant to be with.
Some had called her a name that was once foreign to her: Cupid. That was nowhere near to the truth; research had shown that those creatures were little cherubs who did not so much find the perfect match of hearts, but use their love charms to enchant two hearts and force them together. It was despicable.
She supposed the most accurate answer to her identity was Heart Witch, but it was a term long forgotten to most of the lands. The term was one she learned from her mentor and would someday pass on to an apprentice of her own. Until that day came…if it came…she would hold the name close to her heart.
The young man nodded and held out the satchel for her. Now she could see the crimson staining the bottom of the bag as the blood drained from the small creature he offered as sacrifice. She wanted to laugh at such a silly notion, but they all believed that she used animal organs to assist in her rituals, and they would not believe the truth. Opening the satchel she spied a pheasant; it had been some time since she had roasted any form of fowl. The change from her typical diet of rabbit and fish would be welcome.
Also in the satchel, now a little stained, was an empty leather-bound journal, five gold coins, and an emerald set in a band of silver. She pulled the items out one by one and held each in turn, marveling at how the ring warmed in her hands. That was not a typical response, but she brushed it aside. Likely it meant nothing.
Now she allowed herself to truly focus on the person who offered up these tokens in the hopes of finding true love. He was older than she had thought at first, perhaps seven and twenty summers. Yet there was still plenty of time for him to seek out love, but he had come to her. Obviously there was no financial issue; he had brought well-made items. And he was dressed well…perhaps it was a familial obligation. Or mayhaps he was trying to escape such an obligation by finding the one he belonged with.
She could have asked why he had come to her. She could have gone through all the pomp and circumstance she had once reveled in. But she had sent too many people off on quests to find their true loves, and she was weary.
They came to the cottage, got the answers they sought, and left. None of them asked her name. None of them ever came back. None of them saw her as anything but a means to an end. She would continue to play her part, continue to follow the threads of the heart to find those that intertwined. For as long as it took she would wait.
On rare nights she would dream of finding her own heart-mate, but would wake with the sour thought that it was never meant to be. Dreams persisted but she had long ago lost hope that such a future could be hers. A Heart-Witch did not share the destinies of others. No, a Heart-Witch had to be chosen over a heart-mate.
Long ago she had sought out villagers, offered up her gifts for no price at all, hoping that she would find one to accept her. Long ago she had believed in her own possibilities. But after years of working and searching, the fear of being found and rejected crept in. What if he could not accept her as she was? What if he only saw her as a useful tool on a different path to happiness?
The idea of rejection slowly ate away at her desire, leaving her numb. Now she simply went through the motions and then embraced the solitude. Much as she would do now with this man. Focusing on the ring she held it was nothing to then follow it to the man before her and then drift off into his heart and soul to examine the threads of his heart.
He was different from most she encountered; his heart-mate thread was frayed and split. Once he had met his heart-mate, and unaware, had let her go. She had likely grown heartsick and now resided in the land of the dead. It left this man with an uncertain future, but one that was his own to choose.
In that moment she felt a surge of longing sweep through her, and she knew that in the dark recesses of her heart, she hoped with a desperate fervor that he would be the one to see her and to drag her from her solitude.
But her mind shoved down the rebel emotions and she simply told him that someday his love would find him, but true love would test how patient he could be. He left moments later and once again she was left alone.