Very Short Story: Beltane

The words lay bald and bane upon the page, simple and kind and horrible and cruel. He has fought bravely for his nation and he has fought bravely for his life and though his spirit is still strong his body soon cannot hold life. Words kind and cruel, words that she could never hold to her heart at this time of high magic as spring approached and life was renewed.Carefully she laid the fire upon the grating, dried wood covered in herbs and charms of life and power and creation and renewal. She spoke the words slowly and clearly and with all the love of her heart and as the flames rose she inhaled the smoke carefully, cupping it in her hands and to her face and across her fair skin. She lay back and let the smoke do its works and she felt the world twist as her spirit freed itself from all mundane bonds of flesh and bone as she walked through the lands of spirit and beings ethereal and strange.

Her love she found in a rude tent of saggy dripping leather, his body wracked and burning with fever from wounds that would no longer close. She coaxed him gently and the blankets slid from his pale and twisted form and with a soothing hand that he could not feel she calmed his fears, and lips that he could not feel met his and the taste of them woke within him passions and dreams held close to his heart and shared with none. Pale and palsied were his limbs but at her touch his sickly skin warmed and blushed with color.

Her spirit settled over him, lips touching, hands joined, feet intertwined, breast to breast, her life and her love called to his and the sickly stench of infection faded as his heart leapt in his chest. She could feet his heat rising and she could feel the corruption of his wounds pass through her, seeking to attach itself, but finding no hold in her spirit and it screamed feral and savage as it scattered upon the winds.

He could feel her, but he could not but his body could not mistake the fragrance of her perfume nor the taste of her lips and unbidden his passion took shape and rose proudly and in frustration both sought its use and were denied, but his spirit rose and she felt its bonds to his flesh tighten as the fire faded upon the hearth and her spirit returned homeā€¦

© 2009 – 2020, Tim Boothby. All rights reserved.

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