The Geas of Tulips

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
Something I wrote for a writers club I recently joined. I liked how it turned out, so I thought I'd share it on here as well.

Submitted: November 01, 2018

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Submitted: November 01, 2018



I put tulips under all the pillows, and then I set fire to the house. I stood outside and watched as the flames consumed the wooden framework. Amidst the burning, was the slightest scent of the tulips that had been put in place. It was difficult to discern within the powerful smell of burning wood, but there was no doubt that it was there.

The flames grew greater as time passed. “You broke the promise.” I muttered. In my mind, I could already hear his voice. “I didn’t think you would take our pact so seriously.” Yes, that’s exactly what he’ll say upon seeing the skeleton of his home. He’d never been one to treat things with respect, instead preferring to take things in stride. But that doesn’t change the law of the land: never go back on your words. When the geas is made, it mustn’t be broken. “This was the only right thing to do, this is what we’d agreed upon.” I said out loud, as if he were there.

I held onto my crooked umbrella, as the rain drizzled from above. Its bent shape did little to keep me dry, the shoulders of my green cloak only got more wet as time passed. “I never liked this silly thing.” I thought, looking up at its strange form. “If it wasn’t for its enchantments, I would’ve gotten rid of it long ago.”

A voice came from behind me. I recognized it anywhere: it was the witch I’d met all that time ago. “So, it’s come to this, has it?” “Yes, it has. I suppose I should’ve known better.” “He always was a sly one. Like a fox, he was.” She paused, then chuckled. “How has that umbrella worked out?” “The runes are strong enough but as far as keeping me dry goes, it isn’t very effective.” “It helped burn down his house though, didn’t it?” I sighed. “Yes, it did.” “Then no refunds!” “money I’ll never get back…” “Tell me, have you seen any Dullahan’s lately?” “Yes, I do believe I saw one on the road today. She looked rather lovely.” “Lovely you say? I guess you always did have strange tastes. Still, you know what this means, do you not?” “I do. She’ll come back for me soon enough…death is on its way. But, I have long-since come to peace with that. I understood from the beginning that this pact would go both ways.” “Indeed. I hope for your sake that you will already be dead when he comes back.” “I hope so too.” I looked up at the grey sky. “I always dreamed of life in the Otherworld, and soon I will see it for myself.” “I’ve spoken to the ancestral spirits before. Based on what I’ve heard, I’m sure you’ll enjoy life there.” I made a resigned smile. “Then there’s nothing to worry about.”

There was a pause, then she spoke again. “You hear that?” “Yes, I’m afraid I do; horse hooves.”

© Copyright 2019 C.B. Wilder. All rights reserved.

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