Tag Archives: Victorious Maiden 2

Mistress Osun

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[Sunday photo FictionSunday Scribblings 2]Here’s 925 words for y’all:

“The Goddess demands a sacrifice.”

Adwin turned to his mentor. “What goddess do you speak of Sabiti?”

Sabiti smiled, his crooked teeth turning what was supposed to be a comforting gesture into something more sinister. “I’ve wasted my life in the pursuit of lies.”

“Lies?” Adwin’s eyes widened in disbelief. “You have instructed me most of my adult life in The Way, what lies have you pursued?”

Sabiti sighed. “All of it. My eyes have been opened to the one true way.”

Adwin rushed to Sabiti’s side. “To what, Eminence?”

Sabiti picked up an incense burner, formed in the shape of a dragon. “It’s like this statue. It was made for a purpose.” Sabiti sniffed the pungent aroma permeating from the dragon’s mouth. “The statue doesn’t know it’s purpose, It just knows what it needs to do.”

“But, Eminence, an inanimate object cannot comprehend anything, it lacks a soul.”

“And I have given my soul to the Goddess willingly.”

“Blasphemy!”

“It isn’t blasphemy if I no longer believe.”

“But, Sabiti, you’ve overseen the The Way for the last ten years.”

“A fresh poison each week. I’ve drunk the poisonous lies for the last time.”

Adwin regarded his mentor for a moment. “It’s that woman, isn’t it?”

“Osun?” Sabiti was lost in thought. “She’s the sunlight.” Suddenly, Sabiti’s face fell, reflecting a sadness. “I only wish I’d worshiped her sooner.”

“You’ve obviously fallen ill. This ‘Osun’ woman is confusing you.”

“We were all born sick,” Sabiti placed his hand gently on Adwin’s elbow. “I’ve never felt more clear… more…” Sabiti trailed off unable to finish the sentence. “I’ll ask the Goddess to guide you.”

“I’ll thank you not to offer your heresy.” Adwin jerked his arm from Sabiti’s grip. “In turn, I shall pray for your forgiveness.”

Sabiti turned away from Adwin. “You may continue to worship like a dog at this shrine of lies.” Sabiti stormed out of the room leaving Adwin speechless.

* * *

“Mistress, I’ve failed you.”

Osun leaned forward and Sabiti breathed her in. Each breath filled him with a vitality he hadn’t knows in decades. “It’s the madness of sand.”

“Sand, Mistress?”

“Masters and kings reign over sand.” Osun’s eyes darkened. Sabiti was filled with an impending doom. “My sand,” she concluded.

“I give myself to you, Mistress.”
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Marquis Oya

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#FFC52 #3WW #SundayScribblings Another combo post for Thain in Vain, three word Wednesday, Sunday Scribblings 2 and Sunday photo fiction. Here is the 1200-word continuation of Kanoni:

* * *

“Seek not roads well traveled.”

Octavius leaned back and regarded the young man standing at his desk. The cave was dark, absent of light, except by candles.

The young man cleared his throat. “Did you hear me, Octavius?”

Octavius leaned forward, steepling his gnarled fingers. “I heard you Rashid.”

“And your response?” Rashid prodded.

“I’m ascertaining if you truly comprehend my response and the ramifications.”

Rashid bowed deeply at the waist. “I’m ready, Master.”

Octavius picked up a crooked staff leaning against his desk. He leaned against it as he rose, and stroked his long white beard with his free hand. “Very well.”

Rashid stood to his full height, shoulders squared, head held high.

“Seek paths left untraveled, my son.”

A fragment of metal tied to the top of the staff gleamed in the dim torchlight. A ring worn by Rashid matched both the metal’s consistency and brilliance. He cried out as the intensity overcame him. Dropping to his knees, he grasped his ringed hand by the wrist, tears streaming. He continued to hold his hand firm until the ritual was complete. “Master…” He wept, cradling his agony close to his chest.

Rashid witnessed sadness in Octavius’ eyes. Octavius watched as his pupil writhed on the stone floor. He watched in disbelief as Rashid gripped the gleaming metal between his teeth and slid it off his finger. Once freed from flesh, the ring struck the cave floor and bounced twice before resting – dull and tarnished brass.

Octavius sunk to his chair. “Great Goddess, I feared this result,” he said quietly.

Rashid looked up, his bloodshot eyes pleading. “Master, I…”

Octavius sighed. “You are no longer my ward, Rashid.” Octavius’ eyes focused on the spots on the ground where the ring bounced. Each spot had transformed from solid rock to lifeless sand. Rashid followed his former Master’s gaze and followed it to the ring. He reached for it.

“Stop!” bellowed Octavius.

Rashid froze, mid reach. His heart raced and he felt a shiver. He looked to Octavius and saw anger for the first time in the twenty years he had studied with him.

“You were well aware of the ritual.” Octavius rose, quicker than the time previous. “It was crucial it be allowed to complete.” His voice softened. “You are no longer of the brotherhood.” Octavius touched the metal of his staff to the sandy spots and they reverted to rock. “May the Goddess, Kanoni, watch over you in your future endeavors.”

“Master, please…”
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Kanoni

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Chuck has us writing a story to go with a line of our choosing from last week. I chose Steven Cowles’s line as my opener. After adding 774 words to his, I give you Kanoni:

* * *

Her clockwork wings shattered on impact. She didn’t feel this of course, but the damage was done. So much love and attention had gone into those wings. Now… Now they were worthless brass. It had taken sixteen months to scrounge up enough tin and copper to create the intricate gears. The varying purity required countless hours smelting – each mold filled was a chance at immortality. Escape was the ultimate goal, but the beauty…

“It was worth it,” Kanoni said aloud. She stared at the scattered glistening parts strewn across the desolate desert landscape.

“My little bird,” a soft voice arrived on the wind.

Kanoni ignored the voice and started to gather the pieces from her wings.

“My little bird, why don’t you heed my words?”

“I am not your little bird!” She hissed before scooping up a gear no larger than her thumb.

“Flight is forbidden.”

“It is not forbidden to me.”

“Yes it is. What if a mortal had seen your flight?” The voice rose and fell, wind driving the words into her.

“If you hadn’t wanted me to fly, why did you name me Kanoni?”

After a few moments of silence, Kanoni looked to the sky. Tears filled her eyes. She hugged the clockwork pieces and as each tear dripped from her chin, it tarnished the gleaming metal.

A shadow fell across her. Dark smoke pulsated and billowed in the now still air, forming first a blurry image of a man, then it solidified into flesh. The man who was smoke reached out and placed a hand on Kanoni’s shoulder.
“My daughter,” he whispered, “my little bird, why does this trouble you so?”

Without turning, Kanoni replied. “The wind is at your command, while the mortals toil away in the dust. I left our celestial home in search of anything to justify your ban on flight.”

“What did you discover?”

“I discovered a world populated by caring people. I discovered the injustice between the birds and man. I discovered what your wrath has wrought on this world.” She stepped away from her father’s touch. “I discovered that I’m sad to admit I’m your daughter.”

“Kanoni!” he bellowed. The wind stopped and time seemed to heed to his outburst. Even the breath in her lungs bowed to the Lord of Wind.
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Ascent

Here’s 917 words for Chuck’s flash fiction challenge:

Children piled kindling at my feet for most of the morning. I was bound by rope to a crucifix, piled into the ground my ten men and a mule. The giggling of the children as they merrily set about their tasks weighed heavily on my heart. Unmarried women cast looks of vile contempt my way. They acted as if I had somehow besmirched them with my actions. I was to blame for them not taking a husband. I knew this because they hungrily corralled the children and decried my “wicked” behavior.

Twilight was approaching and fires dotted the landscape. I could smell the cooking fires, but no one offered me food. After all, why waste food on a vile creature such as myself? They didn’t waste a moment without telling me these things.

The village had gathered in a tight circle around my crucifix. Dirty children looked on from behind their parents. They didn’t quite know what was happening, but the woman they had played with in the fields had been bound to her crucifix since sunup.

“Momma, will she hurt us?” The tiny children I had played with only days before would tug on their mother’s arm, garnering the attention they so desperately needed. Pleading for their elders to make sense of what they saw.

Each time I heard the children, my chest tightened. I forced myself not to cry, but was unsuccessful.

The vicar led a contingent through his frightened flock, a torch in his hand permeating the air with a smell bitter to my nostrils and an offense to my eyes. The smoke is thick and pungent, weighing heavier than my arms after waiting all day for them. The snapping and crackling of the torch barely drowns out the whispers from the crowd. I can feel their fear. It’s palpable… It’s pervasive… It’s sad.

The vicar held the torch aloft and and gestured to the crowd with his free hand. “By choosing to give their souls over to the devil,” he bellowed and the crowd fell silent. “These witches…” He spat at at the ground. “These witches flaunt their evil ways and defile our Christian society.”

“Defiler!” Echoed the crowd.

“This witch…” He pointed the torch at me. “She poisons the minds of our men!”

“Poison!”

“She corrupts our children!”

“Shame!”

“For her sins, an affront to our Lord, she will burn in hell for an eternity!”

“Burn!”

“May God have mercy on her soul!”

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