Saturday, June 9, 2012

Site Write Entry #30: A Story

Prompt: June 5, 2012 - Your character to asked to retell a story before their own audience. What story do they tell and how does it turn out?
. . . . . "Did I ever tell you about the time my mentor and I saved our town from famine and became the famous heroes we are today?" The campfire between them crackled merrily as the beautiful, delicate creature across from him shook her head. For a moment, the soft swish of her green locks captivated him and he forgot what he'd been saying. Oh, right, amazing her with his heroic deeds!
. . . . . "So there was this terrible drought, see? Ent a drop of rain for nigh on three seasons, and all the food was shriveling up." As he launched into his tale, he bent his head back to the task of peeling the oddly-orange sweet tubers which were to be tonight's dinner. "In Hanglington-on-the-Rocks, we grew potatoes. Not like these here," he held a peeled sweet potato up, "but fatter, yellowy ones. Quite famous for them, really. Whole country knew that potatoes grew in our village." He nodded sagely as he began to slice, recalling the cheerful shouts of Oy, potato grubber! and Ent you from thet place wot ent nothin' but taters? "Without rain, though, the land was parched and the food weren't growing."
. . . . . The priestess pinched two elegant fingers together and plucked a tuft of bear fur off her purple robes. He coughed uncomfortably at the idea that he'd mussed her up and continued, "Wilmot - that's my mentor, see - and I were the village's only harvest witches. It was up to us to ensure the fields were fertile and the harvests hearty! So we had to get some water before everything died." The sliced sweet potatoes went into the pot of water boiling over the campfire. "Wilmot and I went through every book he owned on harvest magic. We even wrote some letters out to other witches like Marl and even Celestine. It took us two months of research and ritual preparations, and even in those two months, ent a drop of rain. Even the people were startin' to get thirsty." Onions joined the boiling water and potatoes, and through the haze of tears in his own eyes, he felt like he'd been stabbed in the heart to see the ethereal lady across from him with wet tracks down her graceful pink cheeks.
. . . . . For a moment, he fancied she cried over the plight of his people - then he realized they were both crying because of the onions and he went on, "My pops advanced me the golds I was to get on finishin' my training, and we spent it on the last of the ritual supplies we needed. Wilmot and I went out into the tater fields on a night in Hay Moon - when we should've been harvestin' them shrivelly roots - and set up our circle." Long green stalks of a juicy plant he'd heard called 'celery' were chopped and in the pot, though he saved one out to stir with. "The White Lady - that's wot y'all call the big moon, right?" Firelight danced over her gentle features as the priestess nodded at him. "She were big an' full that night." His accent got stronger as he got into the story and lost himself to the country boy he'd been. "We carved our symbols into the ground easy on account of the dryness, set candles up in the four corners of the circle." Busy adding pepper to the stew pot, he entirely missed the priestess's expression of consternation at the idea of corners in a circle. "We called the watchers, raised up a whole heap-load of power, and called to the gods for rain."
. . . . . He paused for dramatic effect, glancing up from his cooking at the delicate flower warming her hands across from him. She nodded encouragingly. "And damn - uh, darn! pardon my language - if they didn't crack open the sky and start it rainin' on us. Washed our ritual circle clean away and put the candles out. Everybody in Hanglington-on-the-Rocks came out and were dancin' 'round in the rain. So we maybe had to worry 'bout floodin' later 'cause it rained a week and a half solid, but hey, town weren't dry no more. And it was all up to me an' Wilmot! We're heroes, see?" He puffed his chest out and struck a pose with the stalk of celery in the air. The lovely priestess tucked a piece of hair behind one long, pointed ear and smiled. Inside, the farmboy melted; he'd do anything for that smile.

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