A Crown of Blood

This is an intro to an idea I once had. I don’t write too often, so don’t judge me too harshly.

It wasn’t worth it to steal the crown. She knew that from the beginning. But, once her eyes locked onto those gleaming golden jewels sitting regally upon a plump satin pillow, her senses fled to the winds. She looked once over her shoulder, a moment of trepidation, before her fingers plucked it right from its perch. She slipped into the shadows without a second thought, and started running. Perhaps she ought to have returned it. Perhaps she ought to have considered the consequences of her actions, but once she reached her winged tortoise, she did not care. She was out of the castle and flying through the air. Exhilaration and adrenaline were singing through her veins.

 

“Did you bring what wasssss promissssed?” a voice like crumpled dry paper called from the shadows.

 

The previous exultation left her abruptly as she landed with her winged tortoise in tow. Dread curled in her stomach like the gnarled branches of a willow. Cautiously, she stepped up towards the cloaked figure in the dark.

 

“Yes I have.” she said.

 

“Good, my child. Now give it here.” A gray and sickly palm appeared then, reaching greedily for her prize. She recoiled and clutched her satchel to her chest.

 

“Not before you keep your end of the bargain!” she replied heatedly. Her eyes shifting around trying to make out the concealed figure whose voice sent chills up her spine. The hand slowly withdrew into the shadows once more leaving a cavern of darkness where it once existed.

 

“Of courssse my dear, of courssse. You wish to be free of your demon. Endlessssly tormented in the night unable to ssslumber. He will come back for you, you know. His kind are not known to be forgiving. He will see thisss as a humiliating rejection upon his name. You will be on the run forever. Unlessss….” the voice trailed off.

 

“Unless what?” she replied tartly. Her nerves ran thin, and the near countless sleepless nights she endured brought her to the brink of insanity. She was on the edge, and she feared she was about to fall down into a pit of madness where there was no return.

 

“Unlesss, instead of simply being free of your bondsss you asked for sssomething elssse. Some meansss to kill the demon….then he would not come seeking vengeanccce.” the voice offered.

 

She paused…and considered the idea. She had never killed anyone before. Thievery and lies was one thing, but murder? But perhaps a demon wasn’t a somebody, and it didn’t count. As she thought, she realized she did want to kill him though. Oh yes, she did. Many nights when he tormented her, and forced her to walk the realms of lost souls, doing his bidding, and witnessing horror upon horror. She hated him. She wanted him dead. ‘The world would be a better place,’ she told herself.

 

She lifted her head, and asked “What could you do? Hypothetically, what would it take to kill him?”

 

Then she saw it. The figure emerged from the shadows as if that was all it had been waiting to hear before making its entrance. Milky gray skin, and watery dead eyes shown out at her. A cold, clammy feeling welled up inside her, chilling her to the bone. Black, spidery veins spread out from the creature’s eyes and mouth looking like spilled ink.

 

“All it takes…” it said, “… is a little blood…” And then the creature smiled.

 

 

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