The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
Death reached over and ran a hand over Birth’s perpetually swollen belly.
Birth sighed, the cool bone of her husband’s hand sent shivers through her body. She looked into the hollows of his eyes and caressed the angle of his bleached jaw line. “It is almost time.”
Death continued to stroke her belly. “I know. I can feel it dancing inside. What do you think it will be this time?”
Birth took Death’s hand and pressed it to her lips, kissing the joints. “I don’t know, but by the way it’s moving in there, I would venture to say a sprite. It’s been a while since we’ve made one of those.” She kissed his hand again.
“They don’t last very long out there anymore. Not many care for the woodland spirits – not like they used to.” He sighed.
“Don’t be so melancholy, dear. It is the way of life. You, most of all, should understand this. It will be fine, no matter what it comes to be.”
Birth grimaced a little, her golden brow knitting together as the first contraction rolled through her. Following close upon the first, a second pulled at her loins. “Ohhh… This one is a little more painful. It’s going to be something big I think.”
Death took his wife’s hand, helped her to stand and walked with her to the birthing pool.
“Thank you, dear. Please, help me in. This one is going to hurt.” Birth gripped her husband’s radius bone as she slid into the warm water. The moonlight danced on the ripples she made. Death cast off his robe and climbed in beside her.
Each contraction was more intense than the one before, more intense than she had felt in eons of child bearing. She remembered these pains and through them knew what would be born this night. She would not tell her husband though. She wanted to surprise him. He had waited so long for another. So very long.
Birth breathed hard, panting through the pain while Death talked softly in her ear. “Yes, there you go, keep breathing, only a couple more. You look radiant. You are amazing,” he whispered over and over.
Then with an ear-shattering wail, she gave a mighty push. From under the bloodied waters the child emerged, body full grown and glowing in the night air.
“Oh!” Death exclaimed. “It’s a… a… Destroyer!” He grabbed his cloak from the ground and pushed towards his new child, wrapping the large infant in it. He turned to his wife, “He’s beautiful. You wonderful, tricky woman. You knew.”
“Only at the last moments.” She gave a tired smile. “What shall we call your son?”
Death ran a bony finger along his newborn’s needle-sharp horns. “Asmodeus. I think it is a fine name and will suit his purpose in life well.”
A sigil developed across the deep red flesh of the infant’s chest. It glowed with young daemon fire lighting up the birthing pool and surrounding woods, revealing the many watchful eyes of his brothers and sisters.
Birth nodded as she caressed her slowly swelling belly. She reached out for her son and drew him to her breast, heavy with milk. “Come, Asmodeus, you must feed now, for tomorrow the world is yours to play in.”
Fiction © Copyright Bailey Hunter
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
More about Bailey Hunter:
Bailey is a publisher with Dark Recesses Press.
Dark Recesses Press is a publishing house dedicated to providing high quality dark fiction in its many forms to the reader. Our end goal is to impress and entertain, no matter what dark recesses we dare shine our light on.
Issue #40 of The Sirens Call – As Summer Leaves, Autumn Falls
Stories of disaster influenced by horrific intent.
Whether it be Mother Nature’s wrath or a devilish ghoul, a sprite most wicked or a stumbling fool, tell us a tale of disaster that happens as summer ends and autumn begins.
We are looking for stories, flash fiction and poetry of horrific happenings that take place in the summer months that lead into fall. As long as the piece is primarily horror/dark fiction, we’d love to see it!
Your piece can be creepy, sullen, emotive, freaky, elegant, bizarre, have a dark-humor edge to it, or simply be flat out scary as hell!
REPRINTS ARE WELCOME
Submission Deadline: August 10, 2018
Circulation: Approximately 35,000
Full page/single book cover ads for individual authors are available at $10 per ad. Please contact Nina@SirensCallPublications.com for advertising information.
All short story, flash, and poem submissions MUST be submitted to: Submissions@SirensCallPublications.com for consideration.
Visit our web site for more details: SirensCallPub.com