The Visitor: Matinée

Listen to Suggested Audio

Akira Yamaoka “One More Soul To The Call”

A thousand deaths later
She had had enough
“Why do I die?” She asked
To which there was no reply
Low mist hung about her ankles suggestively
The same low mist that had cradled her to sleep so many times
Its offbeat lullaby had been her nightly eulogy
A celebration of life with no audience
Inconsequential by all accounts
But also bizarrely essential

Baby steps appeared the best way to advance
After all
Death had not seen fit to offer warning previously
Could strike at any given time
Choose from any manner of unfavorable demises
Proceeding without due caution would invariably see her succumb once again
As time was fluid here
And treading water had never been a pastime She greatly cared for

Should the one She called He be about to pay yet another no longer unexpected visit
Then She would damn well be prepared this time
Indeed, She had worn her very best evening dress especially for the occasion
This vermilion gown flowed like crimson mercury across the soft contours of her nape
Dripping to her bare feet where it pooled beneath the diamonds of her soles
and turned them into rubies

“Come inside” was the chant
“No. I can’t” her reply
Having heard these words spoken a thousand times
She had grown dreadfully weary of the outcome
“I am no mute acolyte” She cried
And the shadows recoiled insecurely
This was unprecedented
Frantically they thumbed their dark scripts for reassurance
But each page was bereft of verse now
The visitation had been hers now

The chilly night air now braced in a different manner entirely
The low hanging mist had begun to dissipate
And this revealed a series of grayish stepping-stones before her
Which seemed to illuminate a left-hand path of sorts
A procession of lily petals littered this walkway
Each dusted in deep red
And a solitary Stag was positioned at the very end of this trail beneath the new moon
Where it watched her every move intently

She had played hopscotch many times as a little girl
And for the first time in this fluid time
She was a little girl once more
Death no longer held the same trepidation to her
Instead she felt overwhelming fascination
Something inexplicable was drawing her towards the Stag
And it wasn’t startled in the least by her approach

The closer She got
The more its markings became more prominent
And it appeared outfitted in the plumage of a raven
Perhaps this was why its gaze had not once deviated from hers
But most fetching of all were its antlers
Eight points
Twisting like tree branches
Each with a fable to tell
And surrounded by an ethereal glow
which twinkled in the blacks of her eyes

Overcome now by compulsion
She leapt
Clearing a number of stepping-stones in one fluid motion
Before landing in a crouched position with fist down on the paving
Just a few yards from the Stag
Eye contact still fierce and unbroken
As she launched into a chaotic sprint
and her opposite number did likewise

The impact alone would have most likely provided her latest untimely death
Had there been one
You see
While the Stag’s antlers were more than capable of shredding her to crimson ribbons instantaneously
They had met resistance this new moon
Locked horns with a similarly sturdy front guard

Death had not arrived
She had arrived
And the skin which once had suffocated
Now fitted like mulberry silk

The other Stag was no longer present
And in its place
Was an impeccably dressed gentleman whose visitations had become commonplace over the years
Only his features were no longer quite as ambiguous as previously
And his threat no longer recognizable

The polished man pointed behind him
Along the remainder of the grayish pathway
to a Chapel bedecked in creeping ivy
The trail of lily petals stopped at the doorway

“Come inside” was his request
“Yes. I shall” her reply
And a thousand vintage deaths then became a thousand fresh lives
As the matinée was now set to commence
And the Stag
She did

Richard Charles Stevens

Keeper of The Crimson Quill

Click here to purchase All of Me Vol. I, II, III, IV, V & VI

Click here to purchase on Amazon

© Copyright: Rivers of Grue™ Shadow Spark Publishing™

If you like what you've seen & read please feel free to share your thoughts with us!

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.