Lucy had skipped and laughed and hummed a sweet lullaby, as she had made her way deep into the forest. She was a happy, fairy-hunting seven year old girl, with pig tails and an innocent smile. She had skipped and laughed and hummed into the forest many times before. On this particular day however, she was further into the forest than ever she had been. She carried a small glass jar, and would stop occasionally to suddenly look under a rock, or behind a tree stump. She was always trying to catch the fairies by surprise.
Lucy skipped out into a clearing she had never found before, and in this clearing was a man. The man was an old twisted figure, with a long beard and deep blue eyes that had long since lost their shine. Lucy saw him and skipped over to introduce herself. The old man spied her and moving his old creaking joints, he began to walk over to the young girl.
‘Hello', said Lucy, looking inquisitively at the old frail man.
The old man stared at Lucy with an intense interest visibly upon his face. ‘What is a young girl doing this deep in the forest?' The old man quickly glanced around for any signs of a parent or guardian. ‘And by herself may I add?'
‘I'm looking for fairies'
‘Fairies? And what would you do with them once you find them?'
‘I catch them.'
‘Have you found any?'
Lucy held up her jar. Inside was some grass, a couple of twigs and two small wriggling bloody lumps.
‘Erghh.' The old man rather taken aback by the sight being offered to him, took a step back and looked a little puzzled at Lucy.
‘They're fairies are they?'
‘Of course they are silly. What else would they be?'
‘Of course.' The old man shuffled closer to the girl. ‘Ahaha...' He began to laugh at himself, his eyes forever on young Lucy. The old man leaned closer to her. His veiny thin fingers creaking as he reached out to stroke Lucy's hair. He leaned in and bent low. He ran his fingers through her hair, cradling some locks in his palm. The old man sniffed the hair, breathing deeply, taking in the scent.
‘Ahhh.' he sighed in ecstasy.
‘I found this as well.' Lucy held up a key.
‘And what's that my young beauty?'
‘It's the key to someone's heart.' Lucy answered innocently.
The old man chuckled, ‘ahhh', he smiled a wide gaping toothless grin. ‘But whose heart?'
Lucy looked at the key, then at the jar, and then at the old man. A smile slowly grew upon her face and she stepped closer to the old man. ‘Yours', she said.
With that she rammed the key into the chest of the old man. With a strength unusual for one so young and as if the key itself were designed for such insertion, it disappeared into the old mans chest. The man looked up at the girl with immense shock upon his face. His eyes grew wider and he dropped to his knees. He looked down at the hole in his chest and tentatively he began to touch the hole with his fingertips. Blood began to trickle from the wound and as the old man looked back up to face Lucy, she could see that his eyes were now bloodshot and a trickle of blood began to run from both nostrils. He tried to speak but found that all that emanated from his mouth was wheezing and red spittle.
Lucy began to hum her sweet lullaby and stepped back from the man as his body began to shake and his arms began to writhe wildly.
His limbs became rigid and he fell to the ground. His chest began to rip open and exposed his broken ribs and the pumping organs beneath. His arms and legs began to shrivel into his torso and his neck snapped, his head caving into his shoulders. Lucy stared at the old man and continued her lullaby. She swung her head from side to side obviously enjoying this spectacle.
Finally, what remained of the man split completely in two, revealing the man's pumping heart, in which was lodged the key. It twisted in the heart as if by itself and the heart split and dropped out from the chest cavity. The rest of the mans organs and limbs flopped onto the ground and at once turned to black ash and blew away in the breeze, leaving just a small wriggling bloody lump.
Lucy skipped over to the bloody lump.
‘You're a big one.' She said as she picked it up. It squelched between her fingers as she squeezed it. The lump of flesh pulsated and farted some foul green gas out of a small hole in its side. Lucy held the lump close to her face and sniffed.
‘Ergh! Smelly!' Lucy began to giggle.
The lump wriggled.
Lucy unscrewed the lid of the jar and dropped the lump into it. She quickly screwed the lid on again and held the jar up to her face. She shook the jar. ‘Now play nice little fairies.'
The young girl picked up the key that now lay on the ground, and put it in her pocket.
She stood, all alone in the forest, and smiled. She looked around her, in all directions, trying to decide where to head next. There were trees as far as the eye could see. Lucy giggled to herself, and began to skip deeper into the forest.
As she went she began to hum a sweet lullaby.