Stolen Regret

I

The biting wind struck Maeve’s frail body with force so she drew her mother’s thin red shawl around her shoulders tighter. She shivered remembering what she had done. The stunning ring had been lying on Mrs. Carver’s bedside table along with her yellowed false teeth which floated in a glass of water. She moved the tumbler and dusted, then slipped the ruby ring into her pocket.

Trudging home on the icy path through the shadowy forest, the weight of the stone spun the ring around her thin finger. When the vagrant grabbed her from behind, it flew into the gloom.

 II

After a long cold winter, sun-filled days thawed the frozen earth and birds migrated back from their winter respite. A squirrel sprung from his warm leaf-lined den in the trunk of an ancient oak. With pangs of hunger he dove to the forest floor and dug for buried acorns. A bright glint like crimson berries caught the attention of his black beady eyes and he hopped through the decomposing leaves hoping for an edible treasure. Cocking his head to one side he gazed at the ruby ring. An ebony crow swooped down and snatched it up with its hooked beak.

 III

“What are you afraid of Chelsea? Ghosts?” Jack taunted. Mary and Thomas giggled, but the tales about the woman in the woods and the thought of meeting down there at midnight to have a séance made her flesh crawl.

The moon hung like a fingernail clipping over the old Carver house where the remaining shards of glass in the windows seemed like a menacing grin.

The rhythmic crunching of their footsteps on the path into the dense forest kept time with the banging in her chest. Jack found an old oak and the four friends settled underneath its gnarled branches.

 IV

Maeve floated through the forest on the wings of the gust’s frosty breath twisting with the wailing wind. Like so many nights before this, she found herself on that muddy path with the ruby ring heavy on her finger like the weight of guilt on her soul. Sometimes she caught glimpses of others completely unaware. Other times they seemed alarmed then faded into the gray snowy night.

Tonight the pull at her core caused a ferocious velocity of writhing. She whipped towards the foursome dislodging something from the old oak which fell between them.

Return it!” Maeve howled with wind.  

 
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14 Comments

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14 responses to “Stolen Regret

  1. Pingback: Channeling Granny and a Discomforting Dilemma! « susielindau

  2. Pingback: The Mistresses of Mayhem « susielindau

  3. Thanks Doug! You threw Margie’s doll down a sewer grate? It sounds like you have some stories to tell as well!! Thanks so much for coming by to read!

  4. Hi Susie,

    I’m prowling through your web site as the night slogs its way toward dawn, Love your stories, Stolen Regret among them. Oh, to have a chance to do just a few things over. Throwing Margie Allesie’s doll down the sewer grate, filching ‘spare’ change from your mom’s purse. Sentences in the book of your life that you wish you could erase or rewrite. that grow and grow as time passes. You captured it perfectly.

    Doug

  5. Great descriptions! I like how tell the story in 3 100-word segments!

  6. EllieAnn

    Great description! The teeth floating in the glass, ruby ring hanging like the guilt on her soul…love it!

  7. John Hardy Bell

    Once again, Susie provides with the friday flash epic! You certainly know how to set a scene – in this case four of them! ;) Nice story!

  8. Madison Woods

    Great story, Susie…sneaky how you fit all that into 100-word segments ;) I really like the imagery.

  9. You create beautiful images in your writing, Susie! Enjoyed your story.

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