New-ish writing bits

It’s been kinda quiet around these parts since I started up nursing school again, but I’ve been writing tidbits here and there. The following tidbits popped out of the aether the other night while writing my nightly words on www.750words.com, and I liked them well enough that I figured I’d share them here. ^_^

I’m not sure if they’re going to be a new story or part of an existing one. At the moment I’m thinking they’re their own story… I just wasn’t planning to start anything new at the moment. ❤

***

The Corpse Hornets were hunting for a new nest, the last one having finally rotted away to nothing but dust and a few teeth. They flew in a dark cloud of metallic humming, ignoring the living that glanced up at their passing. They flew on, over fields, forests, villages. Over a great, walled city and then over another, until they reached the spot they’d tasted on the breeze so many miles away. The remnants of the camp were tattered and windblown, the sole occupant unmoving and starting to bloat in the crisp Autumn sunrise. This one was perfect, the Queen decided, large and mostly intact, with only a few bits missing from scavengers. Freshly dead and smelling like home. The dark cloud descended and landed en masse on the dead man. They began burrowing in through his drying and sunken eyes, through his mouth and the back of his throat. After a sufficient burrow was dug, the Queen entered and began the arduous task of setting up house in a new corpse. The rest of the hornets clamped onto various bits of their new home and as one, lifted it slowly and carefully into the nearest hollow tree.

***

The woman watched the Corpse Hornets make their new home and was glad that she’d left the man where he’d fallen. She turned, then, and began to make her way back up her mountain, back to her cave. She had much to do; spells to weave, magic to call, charms to knot. She also had to water her garden and tend to her goats and chickens, wash and hang her laundry and get the stew for dinner hung over the fire to simmer. It was going to be a long day, but she was grateful to have another day to live, another day to do these things when and how she wanted. Another day of freedom.

***

The small herd of shaggy ponies burst from the scraggly forest at a full gallop, startling the sheep and their shepherd, who had been napping propped up against a tree. Fortunately, the sheep had wandered quite some distance from the shepherd, so they had a good head start on the Thracea. The shepherd, on the other hand, was not nearly so lucky. He jumped to his feet, rubbed his eyes in disbelief and then turned and ran. He was no athlete, however, and only made it a few hundred feet before the ponies were upon him. Razor sharp hooves and even sharper teeth made quick work of the shepherd. One or two of the Thracea gave half-hearted chase to the sheep, but they circled back to make sure they got their share of their dinner instead of expending more energy needlessly. After finishing off every last bit of the unfortunate shepherd, the ponies turned and cantered back into the woods, stopping at the stream to drink and wash their muzzles.

***

The small girl-child ran, eyes unseeing of anything around her, earing ringing with the screams of her village as it burned. She had stayed hidden in the hollow tree where her mother had placed her, hid until the screams had faded into the moaning wind. She’d hid until the nightmares started and then she’d started running. She crashed through the forest, blind to tree roots and branches, scratched and bleeding and naked as the day she’d been born. She ran until she slammed face first into a large, warm, furry wall. The impact knocked her backward sever feet and she landed hard on her back, knocking the wind out of her. She stared up at the sky through the treetops until her view was obscured by the large, shaggy head of the bear she’d run full tilt into. The bear sniffed her a few times, then scooped her up, muttering to itself all the while, and carried her back to its den. Once safely back in her den, the bear regarded the child with caution. Her Großmutterbär had warned her that something was coming. She hadn’t been specific, but she’d warned her nonetheless. This couldn’t possibly be what she’d been referring to… a human child? Certainly not… she hoped. But here was a strange child, naked and covered in blood, with nightmares dancing behind her eyes. The bear huffed and went to work cleaning the blood off of the child. She left the child in her den and went out into the forest in search of berries and plants that would help. She came back to the den, half expecting to find the child gone, and felt both relieved and disappointed to find the child still there. She placed the berries and plants on the ground in front of the child. Realizing that the child was still lost inside her own mind, she sighed and began to chew one of the roots she’d gathered. The bittersweet taste of Tongue Root filled her senses, opening them and making her feel like her corporeal body was slightly less tethered to the physical world. She tipped the girl’s head back and then spit a small mouthful into the girl’s open mouth. She then swallowed the rest of her mouthful and watched as the child reflexively swallowed her own tiny mouthful. The child began to shake, and then she screamed one long, high-pitched, piercing wail of terror and grief. When the sound finally died, she looked around and her wide eyes got even wider upon seeing the bear. The bear lifted a paw larger than the child’s face, and gently set it on the top of her head. A spark of energy erupted between the two, and then the full effect of the Tongue Root kicked in. The spirits of the child and bear mingled, slightly outside of their bodies, then dropped back into their respective vessels. But that brief moment of mingling had worked the magic of the Tongue Root, and the girl-child and the bear were now communicating without speaking aloud. The child’s eyes returned to a more normal size and she looked down at the berries and plants the mutterbär had placed before her. She ate and then curled up against the warm, thick fur of the bear and fell into a dreamless, deep sleep. The bear huffed in satisfaction, then she also drifted off to sleep, asking her Großmutterbär to give her some sense of direction with this human child. For now, she was content that the child was sleeping and no longer lost inside the blood and screams of her own mind, but if this child was given into her keeping, there was a greater purpose at hand than raising a human child or being gifted a quick snack. Not that she’d ever be able to eat the child now, she admitted to herself, not after she’d let their spirits mingle. She dozed off mid-plea to her Großmutterbär, the mingling of spirits having taken a physical toll on her as well as the child. When she woke, it was night and the child was awake, but still snuggled to the bear’s warm side.

***

So… I’ll follow them for a while and see where these story tidbits take me. Have a lovely weekend! ❤

XOXO

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