Katrina's Short Story Corner.
The Night Her Soul Found Freedom.
Melinda sat in her small boat that bobbed up and down, she looked at the full-moon shining like a beacon of hope. And she wondered if the moon was pushed by many free souls that had made the journey from being trapped down here on earth, to breaking free and riding the sky without punishment?
Melinda knew in a matter of hours the sun would rise over her captives land, waking up his many horses. She could see them now behind the fence chewing the grass like they hadn’t a care in the world. As she wondered if any of them longed to jump the fence and run through the undergrowth like their wild brothers and sisters? Not yet captured and broken in, she could sympathise with the horses behind their fence.
Melinda remembered when she too had been broken in by the very same man, she had once been a free spirit believing in love, beauty and standing up to the big men that were destroying the land she walked on every-day. She used to dance to music with lyrics that inspired a better more peaceful world. Then she met him on one of her walks by the river, his shirt was loose and he had a bottle of whisky in one hand. She had found him tortured and handsome unlike any man she had seen before. They had met many times after that by the river, she had been taken in by his poems, his words believing him to be a gentle soul.
How wrong she was after he had taken her as his wife, he had first broken her spirit and then trapped her in a huge house shaped cage. Where slowly she had lost her feelings, been blamed for his shortcomings and had become banished from her free-spirited family.
She kept her eyes on the young hippies and flower girls dancing around a pole of colourful ribbons, twisting each strand round and round. For a moment, she thought she could see her younger-self dancing with those girls.
Melinda ignored the small man with a cap to one side of his head and a canvas perched in front of him. She could tell he was painting her, his eyes took on a misty green every time he glanced her way; like he revelled in the small bit of beauty left in her face.
The wind began to pick up like the sky was calling her home. The gulls let out loud chirps as they swooped in and out of the trees, she wondered if they were calling to her soul? Could they hear her thoughts?
The painter had stopped painting and had begun to gather his things. A part of Melinda wanted to see the painting in his hands, gaze upon her features one last time. But she had no way of speaking to the stranger. She knew it was time to break free as she dropped the blanket keeping her cut and scarred legs covered into the water. It sank to the bottom like all the punishment she suffered drowned along with it. Her hands shook as she struggled with the knot that stopped her boat from being free to drift away from the bank. Her hands bled as the knot finally came loose.
Melinda checked the silver chain around her middle was tight enough that it wouldn’t slip from her thin body. As she struggled to stand, she spread her arms out like a bird that had finally escaped from its cage. Her hair blew about her face as the boat lurched forwards, the waves crashed against the sides like a raging monster.
Melinda forced her eyes to remain on the entrancing full-moon, watching its magical glow follow her as her body plunged into the thick dirty water. She didn’t kick or fight against the waves as she fell under, the water covering her nose and mouth.
Melinda could hear the beautiful melody her fellow peace-loving family used to sing. She could see her now, the flowery Angel reaching for her soul. Her hand reached out. A light feeling came over her; like her clothes had become as light as silk spinning around her body. She looked down, her brown hair snapped from her white headband and flopped over her pale face. As her body fell towards the bottom of the river like a huge rock.
Melinda turned to see the Angel who had finally granted her freedom, but she was gone leaving an open door, where music played. She floated inside and joined the free spirits who were singing and weaving flowers. One looked up, holding out a ring of pink flowers.
Melinda went over to her and took the beautiful halo from her hands and placed it on her own head. She sat next to the girl as the door started to close, and she knew she had finally found freedom, peace and love.
Melinda’s last thought as she watched the door close on her watery death was for the people still trapped on earth, that one-day that earth would find peace and love before they too suffered her fate.
Fiction Short Story
Harvey: Writers Should Never Ignore A Character.
Harvey sat in the waiting room clutching the flyer that had been pushed through his door only an hour ago. He hardly ever took note of mail that found its way through his letter box, but this one felt different, it had no flashy offers or huge wording that stood out to capture the imagination. Instead the paper was a pastel green just like the walls around him and in the centre in small bold print read:Dear Mr Harvey, we have summoned you to attend our writers convention at midnight tonight. Bring your published book and novel in writing don’t be late. Along the bottom was an address he had never heard of before, but he felt compelled to go and find out just what was going on? Maybe they were the fans of his latest novel When girls took over the world? After he had packed his bag and shoved his latest novel that felt more of a ball of stress than a best seller into his bag, fed his cat Lazybones and he walked out into the night.
Now he sat here waiting for someone to tell him why he was here. Just as he was about to call it a night and go home a door swung open and a long arm poked through the gap.
“MR HARVEY THIS WAY NOW!” yelled a voice while the finger beckoned him closer. He stood, walking slowly trying to remember where he had heard that voice before. He paused. Did he really want to enter the room not knowing what was on the other side? He looked towards the exit just as the long arm wrapped around his wrist and pulled him inside.
Lucy: When Characters Get Ignored.
Lucy stared at Mr Harvey as he rubbed his eyes and looked at her and then slapped his cheeks like he was punishing himself. It was rather annoying her now as she grabbed his wrists and tugged him towards his seat at the other end of the table. She thought he looked rather worn out with his hairy chin and sunken black eyes. But she didn’t feel the least bit sorry for the man she had picked to tell her story for he had ignored her wishes, changed her lovely pink hair to brown and made the only power she never had but he wanted her to, yes he so wanted her to have long arms that could reach high places and play tricks on people.
Lucy remembered the selection process before she had chosen Mr Harvey to be her writer to take into her world and give him her all. It had been a sunny day in muse land and all the muses who represent the writers down below had come to pitch their talents and wait until one of us decided to open the door and let the muse and her or his writers inside.
Lucy had been lost to know who to pick, she had only just turned eighteen, her mother had warned her to pick the muse that was most interested in her or the writer would put her story on the back burner and she would be waiting a life time for it to reach the land of the humans. So when she had met Mr Harvey’s muse, a beautiful woman who had told her about his last adventure and how his talent was really bringing the characters story to life just as the character wants it to be, she had jumped at the chance to show him all. That was two years ago, now she looked at him sitting there. She had so much she wanted to say. So much she wanted to teach him before her godmother Harry zapped her back to her world, where she would suffer Harvey’s changes and neglect as he put his own wants over anything she said or did.
Harvey: Seeing One’s Characters In Public Is A Scary Thing.
Harvey couldn’t believe his eyes as Lucy let go of his arms and he faced her at the far end of a long table. He had felt so excited the day she had came into his mind and began to show him her world full of magic and super human people. For a while he had skipped along happily writing about her life, her home and friends. She had been very open with him and he loved those sort of characters who made writing so easy and fun. But then he met a few other writers in a bar one night who had told him to “Take control of her and make her into his dream character. “
At first he had not done this; never in his writing had he put his own wants before those of his characters. Then, one night, he did. He began to ignore her screams of terror as he gave her powers, killed off her best friend and made her live in the middle of nowhere. He knew she wasn’t happy, she had haunted his dreams threatening to kill him in his sleep so he would never wake if he didn’t change everything back to the way it was. But he didn’t care, he kept telling himself that ‘she wasn’t real, She was powerless compared to him’ Now he could clearly see he was wrong as his knee banged against the underside of the table, he wondered just what she was about to do to him?
“Lucy what do you want from me?” he called to her. His voice echoed around the room.
Lucy: Characters Have Powers.
“You know what I want, my life back. But I guess you’ll ignore me again. Won’t you!” She yelled at him, she had thought long and hard about what to do next. That was when Harry, her fairy godmother, told her he could send her to the human world but by morning he would have to bring her body back.
“I’m sorry you feel I ignored you, how can I make it better?” he asked, his eyes looked wide with fright as he tapped his fingers on the table. Lucy tilted her head and decided to use the power that this writer had refused to write about, she placed her hands on his shoulders and pulled herself so her furry face was inches from his.
“Sorry, I can’t hear you,” she whispered as her soul swapped places with him. She watched as her old body jumped from her seat and twirled around the room. Harvey screamed like a girl and she wondered if now he really felt what it was like not to be yourself? To have powers your body couldn’t cope with? She looked down at herself and shrugged, this body might not be hers, but she knew in her true story she swapped places with the evil lord just before he killed her town. So, to her, this was no different at least now she could follow her own path. The clock on the wall chimed six times as her body disappeared and she pulled open Harvey’s bag ready to write her true story.
The Memories of Home…
Looking Through the Mirror of Life.
By Katrina Hart
Monica-The Reflection of Life’s Mistakes.
Monica screamed at her bruised reflection in the kitchen window as her husband leaned over her shoulder to wash her blood off his hands. She turned so her small body was pressed close to his, and waited until he turned off the tap and moved so they were face to face. She had decided she would not stand for this again. She knew this wasn’t her home anymore.
‘Darling, you shouldn’t push me so, then we wouldn’t fight,’ her husband Sam whispered in her ear as he stepped away from her shaking body and picked up the fallen chair before sitting on it.
Monica wanted to say something; she wanted to scream for real and believe that this would never happen again. But the laughter in the mirror that was covered with a pink sheet against the wall stopped her. She heard the song that her mother used to sing flood the room. She began to sing:
‘When Mummy’s little girl cry, Mummy’s comes to sing her a lullaby. When Mummy’s little girl loses her way, Mummy shines the light home. When Mummy’s little girl cry, Mummy comes to sing her a lullaby.’ The words felt like they had taken over her body and filled her brain with a sense of being home. She reached for the mirror and began to drag it out of the room. She didn’t look back to see if Sam followed her as she hurried up the stairs pulling the mirror into her bedroom, locking the door behind herself. Then she flopped onto her bed panting for breath.
Monica lay for the longest time remembering Sam, how at the beginning he had made her heart whole again. He had been a nurse caring for a patient in the next bed to her mother’s. She remembered looking over through her tears as her mother’s doctor had told her, her mother had shut her out of her failing memory. Monica remembered gripping her mother’s shoulders, shaking her, begging her ‘not to let go and leave her.’ Sam had come over to her and taken her out of the room, he had promised her ‘things would be okay.’
After that day she had come to see how truly alone she was apart from Sam. Her sisters were too selfish to care about anything apart from their own needs.
Sam had been her hero. He was a tall, handsome man, with the bluest eyes she had ever seen. He would buy her flowers and tell her things like ‘I’ll never leave you,’ ‘I love you’ while she cried out her worries over never being recognised by her mother again and her fears that she would be alone in the world. Never really belonging anywhere.
Then he changed. He lost his temper over silly things, until he couldn’t control himself. It was like some beast had taken him over and Monica was his prey. Monica could still hear the giggle in the mirror as she drifted into a deep sleep.
Monica- When one reflection freezes the other moves.
Monica woke hours later to the moon shining through the window. She felt lighter as she found a note slipped under the door. She debated if she should leave the safety of her room and face Sam or stay a little longer. The note read… When my little girl cries painful tears, Mummy slay the monster my little girl fears. Monica dropped the note as the red blood like ink dripped onto the floor. She ran back to her bed and sat legs crossed, the tips of her toes dug into her soft quilt as she gripped hold of the sides of the pink sheet that covered the mirror. She remembered that this mirror had been in every place inside her mother’s home.
This mirror reflected her mother singing in the kitchen, and moved when her cat had pawed its reflective glass, and helped her mother be sure her tear-filled eyes were not red anymore before she greeted her husband.
Now she mouthed, ‘When my little girl cries, Mummy brings her home safe.’
Monica was ready to go home to the memory she was promised this mirror could take her to, and she would never have to leave. She remembered her mother telling her as she made her take the mirror with her before she got really ill.
Monica yanked the cover off the mirror and blinked at her reflection. She was seven years old again with two pink ribbons in her black hair. Her seven year self waved at the mirror before she moved towards Mother, who was baking a chocolate cake and singing her favourite song blasting out from the radio.
Monica’s heart pounded as she reached for the safety of that kitchen. Of her seven year old self. Her palm slipped through the glass like she was a ghost passing from one phase to another. She could hear laughter as her body went through the glass. And all her troubles left her mind as her feet touched the kitchen floor.
Monica looked down and realised she was seven again. She ran to her mother who turned and gave her the warmest smile that filled her heart with such happiness that she let out a childish giggle. Her mother winked at her as she picked up Daddy’s hammer that had blood dripping off the end and walked to the mirror, smashing it into so many pieces. Monica breathed a sigh of relief, now there was no way back for either of them. Then Monica’s mother turned to her and held out her hand. ‘My girl, you know you’ll always have a home with me.’ Monica smiled up at her mother and she knew she had found her home, where her heart belonged.
This story was first published in October 2015 on A Writers Blog by Kendra Olson. Check out her blog https://kendraolson.wordpress.com/2015/10/
I always wondered about India, the hot summer, the gods for all prayers and wishes. How is India different from my land on the other side of the moon? I always wanted to visit from the fairy pod and talk to the gods, maybe even learn a word or two from a native speaker, but mother of fairies would never let me, her belief was going to such a warm place would melt my fairy wings and I’d never be able to return...
It was a cold night and I was warm in my fairy pod with Crystal- purple wings written across the blanket I hid beneath. Mother of fairies just called me Purple –wings, but I like Crystal because it sounded worldly. I began to read my fairy study manual to become a fairy of hope and was almost asleep when something crashed into my pod. I held my breath as I peered out of my blankets.
‘Hello, can I help you?’ I whispered. Then I saw him, he had wings too, golden wings and black eyes. He stared at me and then began to talk, I couldn’t understand him, no fairy would as he’d not been sprinkled with fairy dust and therefore, he couldn’t speak moon fairy language. I reached into my bag out of curiosity and throw dust into his shaggy black hair, he frowned at me.
‘Namaste, hello, come with me I have a gift for you.’ I moved slowly towards him, his eyes danced about moving from side to side as he grabbed my hand and flew into the air with me... I could have protested, pulled back and blew the fairy help shell, but I didn’t I’d been praying for an adventure ever since my fairy pod opened and let me out into the world...
‘My name’s Aditya, I am the fairy of the sun. On this night I get to play and take a fairy bride.’ He smiled at me as we hovered above the sun looking down on humans burning wood banishing the darkness of the night. ‘What’s going on down there? Is the land on fire? What do you mean a fairy bride?’ I asked.
‘Purple-wings this is the end of the burning of witches, and how we begin Holi,’ He floated into the sun and weaved colourful paint of many colours over the humans below. I’d never have seen so much fun and colour in my life and the humans' laughter was loud and bright.
‘This is Holi, isn’t is beautiful?’ Aditya said as he took me by the fairy wings and took my hands. ‘We go seven circles around the sun and live seven lives in the sun together,’ he smiled.
I took his hand and we spun round and round with the colours floating towards us from below and kissed one kiss in a blaze of light. I knew in that moment that today was truly the beginning and I would have to take him to mother of all fairies and give up my purple wings to live in the land of the sun, the day instead of under the stars...
The Night A Fairy Saw Holi.
By Katrina Hart