The Ladies of Horror
Picture-Prompt Writing Challenge!
From beyond the beckoning horizon, across the never-ending tide, came the haunting song of devotion, the refrain of the gods. A lilt of silver and sunshine, of promise and hope, a song to put a smile on the bleakest of faces. Each day, with the sunset, the notes drifted softly in the air. First to the lighthouse where the young keeper listened over a last cup of tea, before wafting on to the village.
Year after year, came the song, this harmonious pledge, and for a time the villagers paid homage to the celestial singers. Flowers set adrift on the ocean, fishermen only taking their allotted catch, blessings cast to the wind. Yet, familiarity seeped in and traditions changed, until one day…
The song stopped.
Worse, few people cared.
Then on a darkened evening, against the moonlight, the aged lighthouse keeper saw the red-tinged water and knew the harbinger of the storm had arrived. He made one last cup of tea and turned his back to the ocean. His eyes stared into the brown milky depths, savouring the warmth of the cup on his skin. He knew what the silence meant, what the stain in the water heralded.
He whispered, his words rising with the steam of the tea. “We displeased the gods. And now they’ll take their due.”
He sipped his tea and waited. Waited until the waters rose, until the tidal wave engulfed the lighthouse, the village, the whole kingdom. Then, he, and every other poor soul drowned by the wave closed their eyes forever.
A final sacrifice to the gods of the sea.
Fiction © Copyright A.F. Stewart
Image courtesy of Pixabay.com
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Abandon hope, all who enter here…