Amy C over at Romance Book Wyrm and Dottie over at Tink's Place have come up with the idea for a Monday Morning Flash Fiction challenge. Each Monday a new picture prompt will be posted and if you choose to participate - you post your story on Friday - 350 words, give or take.
And here is picture prompt #30:
By Michelle Greathouse
They led her out of the smoke filled room, one on each side, she was too unstable to walk on her own. Swaying from side to side to music only she could hear, the young woman was unaware of the danger surrounding her.
“So pretty, so pretty. Marie gonna be happy with you.” Whispers followed her down the hall and onto the wraparound porch. She felt hands pat her arm, her hair, pluck at her gown. She ran her hands down the snow white gown, it was so beautiful. She felt beautiful. Didn’t she? She giggled.
The night was alive with sounds of the Bayou. Cicadas battling with bullfrogs and the occasional barking of a gator. The humid air pressed against her leaving a thin sheen of moisture coating her skin.
They stepped off the porch and onto a well used path lined with oyster shells and small bones. The bones got bigger the farther down the path they traveled until every few feet found a skull leering at them. She thought maybe she should be concerned - but that thought was quickly quelled by the music in her head.
Soon they arrived at the entrance to an old cemetery. “Here we are, pretty.” He opened the small, well oiled gate and ushered her inside, quickly walking her up to a lady sitting in a wheel chair. “Marie, this be her. You just sit still, pretty gonna dance for you.” The woman in the chair could not move, but her blue eyes missed nothing.
The young woman was placed in the circle of a stand of head stones. Some so old the engraving had worn away and others cantered to one side or the other. No one had been buried here in hundreds of years - or so it would appear.
“Dance, pretty. Dance for Marie.” She looked at the man standing before her. He was large, black as night and beautiful as sin. She wanted desperately to please him and in turn, Marie.
She closed her eyes and began to dance.
Soon the music in her head was joined by a drum. She opened her eyes to see the man sitting on the ground beside the woman in the chair, a large drum in his hands. He played slowly, steadily increasing the beat until it matched the rhythm of her heart and the music in her head.
She danced with abandon, dipping low and jumping high. Twirling and swaying. It was a sight to behold.
The drum beat was soon joined by chanting and both became louder and faster. She too danced faster, flinging her arms out to the side and throwing her head back.
Suddenly it all stopped. No drums. No chanting. No dancing. All was quiet. Not even the night creatures made a sound.
She reached up and pulled the veil from her head. Her chocolate colored hair was mussed from her dance and her café au lait skin glowed in the moonlight.
But her eyes. Oh her eyes were breathtaking. A blue so bright the sky wept with envy.
“It is you?” The man set his drum down and in three quick strides was at her side.
She turned her face up and smiled. “Oh yes it is me. This is a fine vessel - come we will make good use of it, my love.”
The pair turned to the woman in the chair, now slumped over in true death. “Your vessel’s are lasting longer now.”
She smiled. “My power grows, even after all these years. Soon I will have the power to make the vessel’s immortal - both mine and yours. We will never need the ceremony again.”
Walking through the small cemetery, she stopped by the oldest headstone and ran her hand over the face of the weather worn stone - the engraving faded - but still legible.
Marie Cerise LaFontaine
Marie turned to the pair of servants who had quietly entered the cemetery. She pointed to the wheel chair. “Dispose of that.”
Taking her lover’s proffered arm, Marie exited the cemetery - proving once again that death had no hold on her.
Word Count: 724
Well what do you think? I must be honest and say I forgot about this weeks flash until about 6:00 Thursday evening - but I’m pleased with it. :)
Have a great weekend.