Monday, 27 January 2014

Faerie Mist

This is a writing prompt from Write on Edge, a piece of 500 words based on a picture.



"Are you really sure about this?" Elaine asked.  "The last time I looked at a map this was a supermarket car park."
"I can't get a signal on my phone." Steve muttered, shaking it and looking desperately at the screen.  "But I think we are in the right place, the compass says so."
"You 'bought' a compass from a faerie." Elaine said flatly.  "What made you think that you could trust Lord Marius?"
"Because a lot of the lords like using me as a supplier and he was getting bored of taking me in." Steve said with honest realism.   "And I paid him with a crate of his favourite coffee."
Elaine slipped over a tree root, skidded down the path and just steadied herself in time.  She inspected her stinging, grazed hands.  "This forest is creepy.
"It's faerieland."  Steve said absently as he peered through the mist.  It was an elfen mist, elusive and intangible and with echoes in the swirling air.   In the distance he thought he could hear mocking laughter and the yelp of dogs.  "We need to stay on the path."
"And if we don't?" Elaine hefted her bag back onto her shoulder.  She was regretting coming.  "What did Lord Grey want anyway?"
Steve looked a bit uncomfortable.  "Wormwood.  Artemisia Absinthium.  It's the stuff they used to put in absinthe that sent people mad or blind.  I was surprised that I managed to get so much so easily."
Elaine looked around the pine forest.  The trees loomed over her and the mist was soaking through her clothes.  She shivered and behind her she heard a brief burst of flute music.  Both she and Steve ignored it.  "What would happen if it is the wrong stuff."
"It is the right stuff." Steve could feel the chill as well.  "We need to stick to the path and we need to push on."  He hefted his own, heavier bags.  "It will be alright."
"Steve, you told me about being chased by Yell Hounds in the domain of Lord Hadron." Elaine looked around as mocking laughter echoed again.
"Nothing is going to happen." Steve took a deep breath.  " We are on the safe path.  We have trade goods for Lord Grey which he really wants.  Besides, too many lords use my services.  He wouldn't offend them over nothing."
"Are we safe?" Elaine jumped as something small skittered in the bushes behind them.
"I would not take the woman I loved into anywhere that was not safe." Steve snapped.  Then he paused.  This wasn't how he had planned things.  However he had to seize the moment.  "Elaine Pettigrew, will you marry me?"
Elaine dropped her bag in exasperation and turned to face Steve.  "What a time and place to pick!"
Lord Marius suddenly appeared out of the mist.  "Congratulations, I am so glad that you have finally managed to find the courage.  I trust I will be dancing at your wedding?"

Elaine whirled to face him.  "I haven't said 'yes'!"

I had a lot of fun writing this, I can't wait to find out how this goes.  As a note, you can buy dried Artemisia Absinthium on the internet very freely, as I checked.  It's supposed to be good for the digestion.   The hallucinogenic properties weren't mentioned.  Artemisia or wormwood was one of the ingredients mentioned in medieval witches' brews and that has been used as an explanation for the witches visions of flying.  I've learnt all sorts while trying to write.  

18 comments:

  1. Love the continuation. Love the appearance of Lord Marius. Love her ending line. Great read!

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    1. I am really glad that you enjoyed this, I was worried I was a bit self indulgent. Thank you for your really kind comment. LM x

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  2. lol, I like Elaine's disbelief at his proposal, here and now of all places. I hope you continue this.

    I love all the random information I end up with as a result of looking something up for writing (anyone needs to know what Ice 15 is, let me know).

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    1. Thank you for commenting, and for being so encouraging. I can see a novel shaping up here, I am having so much fun. As for info - my browsing history is very scary lol! LM x

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  3. Unexpected proposals are always fun, as are atypical answers! I wonder what she'll eventually tell him...

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    1. I'm going to try and hold out for a few more challenges. Thank you for commenting. LM x

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  4. Fun piece...love the unexpected proposal and her sputtering answer. You've got a lot more story to share with us...yeah!

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    1. I'm having so much fun with this. I'm glad you like this. Thank you for commenting. LM x

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  5. I like how you build up suspension with small creepy details like the distant laughter and random flute music and really did not see the proposal coming. I agree, research is one of my favorite parts of writing especially when trying to use "real" information in fantasy settings.
    Scribe happy!

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    1. I'm glad you liked this. I am working on the small details in my writing, so I am glad that they worked. As for research, my browser history doesn't bear reading!! Thank you for commenting. LM x

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  6. If there's one thing that Faeries love, it's unpredictability. Steve knows them better than he thinks!

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    1. I am having a lot of fun with the faerie, and I am enjoying Steve's learning curve. Thank you for commenting LM x

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  7. Well, that was a surprise. I didn't expect Steve to propose on the path, but you're right...it made it fun.

    Loved the dialogue between Steve and Elaine, as well as how you created a creepy mood, yet kept thing light at the same time. I felt Elaine's discomfort, but also Steve's confidence. I just it proved to a good thing.

    Last, but not least...I didn't know about dried Artemisia Absinthium. I laughed at your line: "The hallucinogenic properties weren't mentioned." LOL some people with bad digestion might be in for a BIG surprise:~)

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    1. Thank you for commenting, I'm really glad you liked it. To be honest I didn't expect Steve to propose either. I have also found out online how to make a Mickey Finn and where to buy the ingredients (for The Forgotten Village, honest!). I've recently cleared my browsing history, Can I just say again how much I enjoyed your take - I found the sting when it was heart failure a shock (in a good way). LM x

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  8. Just love how this is shaping up-I feel like a lil kid let loose in a candy shop :D.You captured the mysterious elements so well and loved the sense of dread in here as if something awful may happen anytime .The dialogues are perfect with the right amount of suspense and uncertainty /hesitant pauses on Steve's part and Elaine's reaction at Steve's proposal was so apt too!Loved the ending and waiting eagerly for the next part:-)Brilliant job Lyssa!

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    1. I'm really glad you like this. I've decided that as soon as I work out what is going on I'm going to turn this prompts into a novel lol! Thank you for your very kind comment. LM x

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  9. It's no Jumbo Tron, but way to put her on the spot. I have to come back for more, and to find out if Elaine says 'yes.'

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    1. I am so going to keep Steve hanging on for at least a few more prompts. I'm not sure myself - this is a great adventure. Thank you for commenting. LM x

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