Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: EERIE (07/28/16)
TITLE: Through the Fog
By Rachel Rudd
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Troll-shaped ash trees brushed their fingers over his shoulders in his advance. Moistness began to seep through the deerskin on his feet as he reached the edge of the water. I have to find a way to prevent what will happen tomorrow! Maybe I can build a bridge under the water or I can throw vines into the bog and let them seep under the surface as a means of escape. Maybe I could jump in the water myself.
He sank to his knees in the quaggy soil. No, it's inevitable. My lady, my love will be sacrificed tomorrow and I can not prevent it! Such a beautiful, pure and innocent being...
Her piercing blue eyes and golden hair flitted across his memory. He pounded the soil. Why do there have to be so many sacrifices to please a god we cannot see? The gods we can see accept the offerings we give them. Food and animals are sacrifices enough!
Gudmund cried out in pain when his fist smashed a buried rock. Blood began to run down his hand. In his desperation for guidance, he dug his fingers into the soil to uncover the boulder while rubbing his fingers over the flat, but uneven, surface. He placed his palms in grooves dug deep into the rock face. The grooves began to take shape under his hands in the dimming light. Feet. This was the outline of two feet! He sunk the tips of his fingers into the ten toe depressions as his voice rang out in the stillness, "Why would the ancients waste time carving feet? Did they use this rock to escape the fate facing my love? Did they want deliverance form the fate I am facing? I want answers!"
Resolutely, light kindled around him permeating the darkness. He reared his head back staring at the sky as a bright cloud descended from overhead. Birds seemed to chirp in anticipation of morning so Gudmund rubbed his eyes and looked again. Yes, the cloud was getting closer and brighter!
Above the cloud, two feet shod in plain leather sandals appeared. As the cloud progressed towards the earth, the feet moved along with them. Gudmund watched in wonder as the cloud neared the ground not more than a stone's throw away from him. The feet pierced the cloud, touching the earth, and then slowly walked towards him. His heart beat faster and his fingers began to fill the rock below him with sweat. Surely, this was God come down to earth!
With trembling limbs, he bowed low. The feet curved away from him passing within an arm's length. They continued into the water and evaporated into the water of the bog.
Gudmund continued to wait for something else to happen. His heart began to stop its frantic pace when the bog grew dark and the rock below him cooled.
The silence began to be unbearable. His words broke the stillness. "God on earth...A sacrifice.... pure....only a sacrifice as pure as what I just saw could satisfy once and for all. I must tell my people that they must wait for this sacrifice to be made. But will they understand when they have not seen what I did?" Gudmund rose to his knees and turned towards his village. He had to try.
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