Since the last two prompts have leaned towards the dark I decided to throw some love to the light side of things. If you would be so inclined use the following words/topics in a short story, poem, idea or scene:
Rain & Prism
A dense forest creeps through the night, groaning and creaking its way towards dawn. An owl screeches as it welcomes a field mouse to dinner. The moonlight dances as stars awake and open their eyes. A mother and daughter lay huddled together. The child, with mud stained face and lips pursed in a snore, breathes heavily into her mother’s chest. The mother alert and watchful, distrustful of the night, lay awake waiting. Waiting for the Shadowmen.
One Must Seek Before One Finds
The Shadowmen, The Unseen, The Seekers, The Lurkers, The Precursor or the Still in the Night; whatever name you know them by they’re always there, watching. When the night goes quiet for no reason at all, it means they’re close. When it feels like someone is watching you, it means they see you. That corner of your room that looks like the shadow is more dense, it means they’re standing there. That cold air you feel that sends a shiver down your spine, it means that their lurking is complete. They’ve catalogued you and it’s time to report back to the Finders. The Finders are placing a beacon inside you, that chill means you don’t have much time left before they find you. They always find what they’re looking for and what they’re looking for is the child.
A Seeker and a Stitcher
A Seekers main objective is to observe and report all while moving around without being discovered. The reason a Seekers study feels so uncomfortable in their own skin is because they know someone or something is with them but they can’t see them. Until last year no one even knew that the Seekers existed, we’ve only ever heard of the Finders.
Late last year Mother had tucked her daughter into bed, kissed her forehead, turned out the lights and before she closed the door she paused. Mother thought she saw something in the corner, something standing, watching, taking notes and waiting. Mother closed the door and whispered sweet dreams.
Something didn’t feel right, whatever made Mother pause in her daughters doorway was still on her mind. She knew she saw something in the corner of her daughter’s room so Mother decided to go back and check on her. Mother tip toed delicately to the closed-door of her daughter’s room, slowly turned the knob, opened the door and quietly poked her head in. Everything was normal. Her daughter is sound asleep. The wind is blowing in through the window and the dark curtains are billowing.
Mother knew she saw something in the corner before she closed the door. And whatever that something was now standing over her daughter. Mother didn’t allow herself to panic. She slid into her daughter’s room, quietly reached her right hand into her left breast and pulled out her Needle. The Needle was threaded, connected to the Mother’s chest. Mother’s needle was larger than a crotchet needle yet thinner than a sewing needle. Mother’s needle was sharper than a chef’s knife and forged out of her life’s blood, her light.
As Mother approached the billowing shadow-curtain she held her breath, drew up her arms and quickly pressed her Needle into the neck (or at least where the neck should be) of the Shadow. The wind stopped blowing as silence filled the air. Silence. Silence was quickly followed by a the bedroom door slamming shut simultaneously as the shadow thumped to the floor and a high-pitched digital squeal rang out.
“TRANSMITTING! TRANSMITTING! TRANSMITTING! TRANSMITTING! TRANSMITTING!” rang out a watch-like wristband.
The wristband read, ” No signs of prism or full capabilities. Will continue to observe. Going in for closer look – Seeker Appellent.”
The other end replied, “Do not break cover Seeker Appellent. Stay in shadows. Too soon for prism. Repeat. Stay in shadows – Finder Appropriator.”
The slamming of the door had awoken the daughter. The high-pitched digital squeal had unsettled her. She would embrace these unexpected changes with as much courage as a five-year old could muster. She laid still searching for her mother’s face in the darkness. She saw the faint glow from the wristband, it seemed to bend and slither its way up until it reached her mother’s face, highlighting the fear in mother’s eye.
That fear witnessed in her mother’s eyes made her cry. The deep helpless cry of a unknowing child. The cry that would break a mother out of her fear induced shock and bring her back to reality, back to her baby, her life, her light.
“Shh shh shh!” hushed the Mother.
Before reaching out the Mother placed her Needle back inside her chest then picked up her daughter and rocked her in her arms, “Quiet child. Everything will be alright. Remember how I told you one day we would play a game? How we would play ‘Hide-n-Seek’? Tonight we start. Okay?”
The daughter wiped away the tears in her eyes and nodded a trust filled nod.
“Okay mommy.” stammered out as she kissed her mother on the nose.
While holding her daughter the mother grabbed a bag, already prepared, and headed out the front door.
A Stitch of Rain
A mother and daughter lay huddled together. The dense forest creeps towards the dawn. Trees groaning and creaking. Owls cooing as they settle into their nests before the sun rises. Sparrows chirping as they stretch out the night’s sleep with a flutter of their wings. A cool breeze rattles the Pines while tucking a blanket of dark clouds into the sky overhead. The forest feels alive as animals start to settle in for the day while other animals prepare to greet the morning sun. A mother and daughter lay huddled together.
Rain, the mother, quietly begins to sing an old song as she reaches into her chest and pulls out her needle. The song rings of triumph and loss, love and pain, and the life and death of a family history long forgotten. If you were close enough to hear it the hairs on the back of your neck would rise and you would forget to breathe. You would be swept away in the emotional tide of Rain’s song.
The animals of the forest chirp and whistle along with the quiet harmony of Rain’s song. The dark clouds remain still, if only for a moment, before they continue to roll through the sky. The needle in Rain’s hand glows bright as the song crescendos. As Rain’s song comes to an end the light of her needle fades to a soft ember-like burn, warm and welcoming.
Prism, the daughter, stirs in her mother’s arms and then settles as she rolls away in a waking stretch. Prism smacks her lips in a yawn and wipes away the sleep from her eyes.
Prism, curiously asks, “Mama, why is your needle out?”
Rain answers with a tired sigh.
Concerned Prism asks, “Mama?”
Rain, “Yes child, I heard you. Remember how I’ve shared with you countless stories regarding the Stitchers? How they used their needles to stitch broken hearts together? How they were the guiding light during the darkest hours?”
“Yes mama, I ‘member.” replied Prism.
Rain continued, “Well Pris, Mama’s a Stitcher. The night we ran away a Seeker came into your room while you slept. I don’t know how but I saw him. I took my needle out and I killed him with it. Before we left I noticed that the Seeker had transmitted a message. You’re in danger Pris and I need to protect you. I need to save you.”
Scared, Pris begins to cry. She pulls herself into her mother and buries her head in her mother’s chest.
In a reassuring tone Rain says, “Hush child. Everything will be okay.”
Prism stutters, “But Mama, what are you going to do?”
Rain smiles, “Everything will be okay. This won’t hurt at all. Close your eyes and get some rest. If the storm rolls by the sun will be out soon.”
Prism closes her eyes and quickly falls asleep as Rain sings her song. The needle as well as the thread tethered to Rain’s heart glows bright. With the needle in her right hand Rain begins to stitch her light into her daughters heart. The needle pierces Prism’s chest and plunges through her heart. Tears pool in Prism’s eyes as every moment of Rain’s life floods into her daughter’s mind. Rain continues to stitch her light into Prism and on the second to last stitch Prism opens her eyes, “Mama, don’t.”
Rain smiles, “Hush child. I know what I’m doing, I’m un-tethering and I’m stitching.”
“But mama, you’ll die.” Prism says with a quivering lip.
Rain smiles again, “Oh child. I’ll live in you. You’ll know my secrets. You’ll know my songs. Any time you miss me you can pull your needle out and talk to me. I’ll be with you always.”
As Rain held Prism the forest grew quiet and still.
Rain pulled her daughter in close and whispered, “Don’t be afraid Pris but the Seekers are here and they brought the Finders.”
With one last stitch Rain was completely un-tethered. She kissed Prism on the forehead and disappeared.
Prism cried out, “Mama!”
The sky went black as the storm started. Thunder tore its way through the clouds releasing a blinding wall of water. Bright blue lights could be seen as the Seekers and Finders stumbled over each other searching for Prism. Prism hadn’t moved a muscle, she was afraid. The floating blue lights were closing in on her, darkness was a blanket she couldn’t afford to hold on to. She knew that she needed to get away before it was too late.
Prism took out her Needle, now firmly tethered to her heart, and threw it into the sky. Even the blackness of the storm couldn’t hide her needles light. As the Finders reached out to grab Prism her needle fell through the top of her head, down her spine and struck the ground. Thunder clapped as the Finders were thrown from their feet. The storm cleared up and Prism was nowhere to be found.
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