Barely Breathing!

flames_88__inferno_by_eris_stock“It looks to me like you’ll never have her.” I whispered. “I think the old hag has you beaten. She’s kept you away from her daughter for a long time now. Maybe it was never meant to be.”

I moved closer to him, the smell of his body was overpowering. He hadn’t breathed for a long time, but hot putrid air surrounded him.

Distract him; take his focus away from Mala. Give me a chance to set them free.

I heard her thoughts, what if Luca heard them too?

I looked into his eyes and smiled, it took all of my courage and energy, but I was convincing.

What if he kills me, what then?

He looked down at me, fascinated. “You’re awfully brave! How can this be? I usually have to fight to get my pleasure. Why aren’t you fighting?”

I was terrified, barely breathing, but something spurred me to play his game. You’re doing great, keep his focus. It’s working.

“Maybe I’m tired of life.” I said, my voice sounding stronger than I felt. “I get up and go to work every morning, but for what? Its time for a different, more exciting life. Tell me what you have to offer?”

The creatures behind him gathered close together as they watched me.

“You can ride the night skies with me” he asked. “You  can look down at the world of pathetic humans and see them, like ants, running around as they live out their futile lives?”

He moved closer to me, our bodies merged. I was terrified.

Although his hands didn’t move, I felt violated; I knew his intentions and felt him touch me.

“Ahh, lets play a while.” He said.

I have him, please do what you need to do and then help me.

My fear spiraled out of control. I was completely enveloped by evil. Terror paralyzed my body.

I’m dying! Help me!

The life was being sucked out of me. I was lost!

I’m barely breathing. Help me!

I was vaguely aware of a light, a light that grew slowly stronger and sent wispy branches shooting off towards the sky as the poor creatures that had been held captive escaped. Behind me I heard bells. The sort of bells you associated with Christmas, heralding the arrival of happiness.

I knew these weren’t Christmas bells, but Romany bells and I smiled. I shouldn’t have done that. I shouldn’t have smiled.

“You witch, you sorceress, you temptress. I’m going to squeeze the life out of you now.”

I looked up to see his face. I’d fooled him for a while and and he was full of lust for a live willing body. Something I wasn’t prepared to give and he knew that now.

He tossed me aside like a doll. I hit the ground hard, knocked senseless for a few seconds. When I opened my eyes I saw the old gypsy, she chanted and danced in a circle around the smoking man and his Romany love. They were wrapped in tender embrace for the first time since death claimed them. They faded to nothing, poof, gone.

“You old witch, you’ll pay for this.”

God please let him not be talking to me; I have no fight left in me.

I looked at the distorted face of evil and saw him focus on the old Gypsy. She smiled. “Come on then, make me pay, I’m old and fragile, but I beat you at your own game. You can take my life now, but you can’t touch my daughter anymore. You can’t go to the place she is now. She’s safe from you, safe forever!”

He was on her in less than a second. Moving around her, his face contorted in anger. She didn’t budge, but stood her ground and smiled. I wanted to help her, but I couldn’t move.

“Please leave her alone.” I whispered, but no one heard.

It’s all right; I’m ready to die. I’m old!

She put her arms out and started to chant again. I watched the evil presence of Luca shrink slightly. He became still. He looked confused, unsure of himself. The old gypsy’s head snapped back. She closed her eyes, opened her mouth and inhaled deeply.

Noooooooo!

The awful shape of evil disappeared into her mouth and down her throat. When there was nothing of him left her lips snapped shut and she exploded into a fiery mass. I saw them fighting in the flames, but he was lost, no match for a cunning old gypsy. His evil was no match for her love.

I watched until there was nothing left but calm.

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Evil Dead!

evil faceThe silence didn’t last long. A strong wind blew. It was icy cold. A weak, fading glow danced in the darkness. The tinkling bells grew silent. I knew I had to do something, but I didn’t know what!

“Lucky Heather?”

The voice was close to my ear. I turned quickly, expecting to see another restless spirit, but instead I came face-to-face with the old Gypsy I’d seen a couple of days earlier. I touched her wrinkled cheek. It was warm. She was real. She grinned a toothless grin and pushed a sprig of purple heather into my hand. My skin tingled at its touch. I remembered the heather that filled my living room a few days earlier.

Was she trying to help me?

Looking into her eyes, I saw strength, and wisdom. I looked back at the fading glow of the young gypsy girl and my heart began to ache.

“Don’t go!” I pleaded in a voice that didn’t sound like mine.

The smoking man appeared behind her, reaching out his arms, trying to hold her, but she was barely visible.

Laughter bubbled from behind me. It was nasty and malevolent. I turned around almost losing my balance, and looked upon pure evil, in the form of a man. Horns were all he needed to make him look like the devil itself. I knew he was long dead, I could see it in his eyes, but he looked strong. The smirk on his face was terrifying.

“You can’t help them, they’re my playthings.”

I tried to speak, but my mouth wouldn’t open.

His laughter surrounded me.

“Every year they suffer. It’s what they deserve. He took her from me. He took her from the Romany way of life. Stole her. Common thief that he is.” He spat on the ground. The grass died around him and the air turned putrid. “I’m going to take you too. Every year I add a wonton creature like yourself to my collection. Young girls who fall under his spell, all too stupid to resist his pathetic charms. I get them all in the end.”

There was movement behind him. A dozen or more young girls huddled together. Some naked, all unhappy! Snatched from life and made to suffer by this evil, restless spirit. I didn’t want to be one of them.

“Why do you want me? Let me go. What good can I do?” I whispered, trying to sound brave.

“I don’t want you, I didn’t want any of these pathetic creatures,” as he spoke he turned around. They all cowered away from him. Could he still hurt them in death?

“I want her! I’ll give them all to him, in exchange for her. ”

I looked back at the fading light that was the beautiful young gypsy girl. I could barely see her now.

Another voice came from the darkness. I’d forgotten about the old woman.

“She’ll never be yours Luca. She didn’t love you.”

Her voice brought a look of fury to the ugly face. A bird fell to the ground at his feet.

“I didn’t want her love. I wanted her body! Love is nothing. I needed her beside me to bear my children.” His voice boomed like thunder. He smiled an awful smile and licked his lips, “I wanted to play with her a little too.”

“People like you should never be allowed to breed. If you’d given her a child it would have died in her womb.” The old girl cackled. Her voice was strong.

“I’d have torn it from her body before that happened.”

More birds fell to the ground behind him. I could smell fire. Maybe it was the fires of Hell. Somewhere close by a tree fell smoldering to the ground.

The heather I held tightly in my hand became so warm I wanted to drop it.

A voice from deep within my head whispered to me.

Make him angry now. Distract him! Let Mala escape. Let him focus his anger on you and me.

“I’m scared.” I answered. “He’ll kill me!”

A pain ripped through my skull.

“Be quiet you old Hag, I hear you”

 

Beautiful and Haunting – Gypsy!

gypsyWednesday passed by with no sign of my mysterious fantasy man. Every time I heard someone kick-start a motorbike my heart missed a beat. It was never him though never the leather clad, cool smoking man! I bought ‘Rock On’ by David Essex, but I should have saved my money because even when I wasn’t playing it I couldn’t get the song out of my head.

Richmond fair opened on Thursday evening. The rides were much cheaper that night.  Everyone called it test pilot night. You rode cheaply, but at your own risk. I didn’t usually visit the fair on test pilot night. Not because I was afraid of dying while testing out the rides, but because I had to get up for work the following day. A night at the fair almost always involved lots of alcohol, greasy food, and a hangover. When I left work on Thursday, I bypassed Richmond Market Place altogether, not wanting to push my way through throngs of ‘test pilots’. I was almost home when I encountered the old wrinkled gypsy again.

“Hey pretty lady, buy some lucky heather.” She said in a husky voice. Her accent was deep and guttural. A true Romany maybe!

Gypsies, with their superstitions and potions, scared me so I opened my handbag and found my purse, hoping I had some change to give her. I grabbed twenty pence, which would do nicely. A cheap way to prevent being cursed!

“Here you go,” I said looking up. I stopped dead in my tracks. The old hag who sold the heather was gone and a beautiful young woman stood in front of me. Was it a trick of the light? Her black curly hair rested on her bare shoulders. Even though she stood still the bells on the bottom of her skirt jingled in the breeze. She shivered and pulled her shawl tightly around her. Her dark searching eyes focused on me. They were hypnotizing. I held out the change I’d pulled from my purse.

Looking at the hauntingly beautiful face I whispered. “For the lucky heather.”

She frowned and opened her mouth to speak. I felt her breath, it smelled like lilies and then she disappeared right in front of my eyes.

The plot thickens, disappearing man and now a gypsy! Stay tuned, my next post will be on the road from Italy. Maybe the Italian air will inspire me. Thanks for stopping by!

My first novel Dead of July is available on Amazon for 0.99.