Matchmaker

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic


Matchmaker

In a summer field, in the warmth and sunshine, a small young girl plays. She is on an exploration. The day is free to search the remote areas of the woods. Everything is bright and beautiful. She dances gleefully in thought. An excitement has filled her for what the future has. For a day like this, the only fitting things to think are romantic. Those fantasies play around in her head, swimming with different ideas, but the same goal. One day, as she expects, she will find some talented, sprightly man. He will just as beautiful as summer.

However, that is far in the future - probably forever. For now she has to live with her friends, but her friends are not special, not in the romantic sense. Sometimes she doubts any of this is possible, but there is always hope no matter how faint it seems.

The thoughts turn to simple wishes. Further into the trees, the forest grows taller. She has entered an unknown section of the forest. The dark shadows are darker. The eerie wind is eerier. This place is strange, but she was drawn here by curiosity. The slope of the mountain gets steeper. This kind of territory is normally where one should expect a wolf or a bear maybe, so she proceeds cautiously. Also, the rockiness is rockier. A few sights of what appear to be caves or overhanging rocks stand off to her. Thick bushes impede the way.

Further through the trees, rocks, and bushes, a small glimpse of light vaguely appears to her. It seems to come from inside the ground, in a cave. Shrubbery covers the entrance. She tries to peek inside, moving away tons of branches and leaves, hopefully not making too much noise. Something is inside. Some type of furniture and the room of a house is there. There is a rug and wooden legs for tables, against the backdrop of gray stone walls and dirt floors. This cannot be a real house, but furniture definitely sits there, and a real light is shining. On the table near the entrance sits a gas lamp, beaming bright light into the small girl's face. She squeezes through the bushes some more to get inside.

As she squeezes in, she can see another figure, a person in the room - a hefty old lady with an apron and greasy looking hair. The old lady is looking at some jars on the shelf. The jars have inside them an assortment of different colors, bright and dark, and as she looks at one of them, the jar's contents swish around like a light goo. She pleasantly gathers her jars of goo, shakes them a bit, then dodders to the other side of the room, where there is a table with a faucet and an icebox next to it. With green and brown and red as her colors, she starts pouring one into the other, into another, and mixes them for a while.

The young girl thinks to step in, even though this woman is clearly strange and untrustworthy. The thick brush makes it nearly impossible to escape, but the woman looks physically incapable of any chases, and she is probably too big to squeeze like she did. Bravely she stumbles inside the house. The old woman, now paying attention, turns to see what is generating noise in her front door.


Old woman: Woah! What?

(The girl points at the goo.)

Girl: What's that stuff?

Old woman: Who are you? What's a little thing like you doing here?

Girl: Me? You're the one living in a cave in the middle of nowhere. And what's in those jars? Is it the brains of dead children?

(The old woman glances at the jars as if she does not know.)

Girl: You're a freaky old lady who lives in a cave. I think - that makes you a witch!

(The old woman stares for a second.)

Old woman: I was making my lunch when you barged in.

Girl: You're eating that? I knew it! You eat children like me!

Old woman: I don't eat children.

Girl: Are you a witch?

Old woman (contemplating for a moment): I've been called that before, yes. And I don't eat children.

Girl: Then what's that stuff? (pointing at the jars) If you don't tell me I'm calling the cops.

Witch: I'm making dinner. You want some?

Girl: I'm not eating that, witch. You have to zap me into dust before you can eat me.

Witch: Fine…


The witch continues mixing the colors. She reaches into the icebox, grabs a couple slabs of bread, and she slaps them onto the counter. The goo is now a dirty green. It appears completely inedible, but the witch happily slaps on the top piece of the sandwich and grabs the meal with her large hag hands. She asks what the girl's name is, but the girl is unrelenting. She asks what her favorite color is. The girl says yellow. After a strong, big bite (and messy at that), the witch searches through the shelves again. Way in the back, she identifies a jar with yellow goo in it. It is a bright yellow like the sun, and the favorite color of this girl. This ominous revelation must prove that she is a witch.

Quickly the witch chomps on the rest of the sandwich. She pulls open the jar. A yellow fume explodes, causing her to gag as she tries not to choke. Amused, the young girl laughs quietly. She still does not trust this woman, though. Clearly she is weird and not very competent, but the green jelly sandwich disturbs the young girl.

The witch goes into the back room and hauls out a cauldron, meaning she has verified her identity as a witch. With the jar in one hand, she dumps out all of the color inside. It pours and oozes. Then she grabs a spoon, as witches do. Since there must be a fire, she finds some kind of gas burner to put under the cauldron. It heats up very fast. With the spoon she stirs, moaning in the meanwhile because the goo is thick and hard. Her bones crack while doing this, and she bellows a satisfactory “My aging…” After a good stir she looks inside. She sees something in there, pointing her finger like she is reading something.


Witch: So you're name is Magdala.

Girl: Umm - no it's not.

Witch: Yes it is. I can see it right here.

Girl: Nope, you're just - messing with me.

Witch: No, I'm pretty sure your name is Magdala.

Magdala: All right, yes. So you're a witch and you know what my name is. You realize this means I can't trust you, right?

Witch: Fahhh…

(The witch seems unconcerned.)

Magdala: I just was wondering why you live here, and do you eat children?

Witch: No better place to live, is there? This place is good enough. It's got the fresh soil, and it's quiet - sometimes. That stupid bear likes to poke his head in here where it doesn't belong. But little does he know I can take care of myself, and one day he poked his head in and gave a big roar, and I smacked him on the jaw. And he roared like he got stung by a hornet. “That's right,” I said, “run away you little 'fraidy cat!”

Magdala: All right, whatever. You can do witch spells - like - you know my name. What else can you do?

Witch: What else can I do? I just do one thing. I'm a matchmaker.

Magdala: You're a what?

Witch: Matchmaker. You know - romance and that business.


Magdala stops. It is a strange coincidence that the witch is a matchmaker on the same morning when Magdala was thinking about romance. It could be a trick or a strange coincidence. If it is a trick, then how does the witch find her name? Although, a matchmaker probably means the possibility of finding a match, and Magdala cannot turn that down right away.

The process of matchmaking starts with stirring the pot with herbs and goo. After they mix and the herbs become crispy, Magdala has to drink it. This is a bad sign. No way will she drink it. But if the witch can find a match for her, she has to find out. The prospect is too promising. With all the people in the world and all the time that flies away, this decision might make a difference and change her life. The next step is to think of your dreams. If she does not follow her dreams, she will lose sight of her true love. The spell only works if she truly believes.

Magdala, fearful but also tense with excitement, ponders for a moment. Is this a chance she cannot take again? She would risk many lives for a chance like this. She approaches the cauldron. It steams a strange smell; the colors boil up into a gas and taint the air yellow. The witch reaching for ivy leaves tosses them into the stir and watches them dissolve.


Magdala: I might take you up on that offer.

Witch: Well, if you're going to, you gotta drink this juice. One more stir and it's going to be perfect.

Magdala: How does this work anyway? Is it make me hallucinate some hunky guy?

Witch: No. What's gonna happen is you'll get this tingling feeling, and it'll taste good. And then, everything will look weird. That's when you're getting transported to your lover.

Magdala: Transported?

Witch: Yeah, you get transported. When all weird stuff goes away, you'll see your lover. You get transported right to him.

Magdala: Really - just like that?

Witch: Yep, and then you talk to him or whatever it is you kids do. Play games - I don't know.


Magdala, unsure if this could work, looks into the golden stir. It smells crisp and sweet, like her favorite desert. Darker parts of the gold form shapes in the liquid. They look like rectangles and hearts. As she smells the sweetness, she grabs the wooden ladle, dips it deep inside, and takes a sip. It takes like chocolate but also healthy like green vegetables. Weird - she cannot believe how good it tastes. She smacks her lips satisfactorily.


Magdala: So what happens now? (taking another sip)

Witch: Now you think about your best romance ever. Just think about it like you want it more than anything else in the world.

Magdala: Like my dreams, right?


Magdala thinks about it, but she loves the soup so much it is hard to concentrate; yet when she thinks about chocolate candy like a romance she concentrates better. With that in mind, she has an easier time. Concentrating very hard, she feels a spinning sensation. The colors, more alive than they were before, dance around the air. A swirl forms in front of her creating a tunnel; she feels a pull like a wind from behind blowing strongly; and then she gets sucked into the tunnel. Not knowing where she is going and surrounded by gold and purplish colors, constantly spinning, she stares at the end of the tunnel which keeps changing its form. When she gets close to it, it seems to move away, and then she gets close to it again. She cannot move her arms or legs because she is going too fast.

She keeps thinking about what she wants. The tunnel's end seems to widen. She feels herself getting closer, and her excitement makes her almost dizzy (aside from the dizziness of the tunnel). Now she can only think of her lover, and he is the best she could ever dream. Moving faster and the glow of the tunnel getting brighter, she shuts her eyes. Suddenly she stops, and her body is a bit numb. She is standing in front of someone.

He is a seedy looking boy. In his hand he carries a bucket full of milk. The appearance of this girl in front of his eyes startles him, and he drops the bucket. She is equally scared. Neither one talks for a while. Looking at him, she can see from his appearance that he constantly works in this dusty farm, and he is not very handsome. It is a small one-floor house, and the pen has a few cows in it. The fence is barely intact. “What the heck!?” he screams. His voice is even worse.


Magdala: Where am I? Where am I? What is going on?

Boy: You came outta nowhere. I didn't see you.

(Magdala looks around. She does not see her lover anywhere.)

Magdala: No. Are you the only one here?

Boy: Yes…

Magdala: Are you sure? There's someone else here, right?

Boy: No…my dad's inside, that's it…

Magdala: No, there's like - someone…

Boy: Uh - I didn't see anyone. If yer lookin' for someone I didn't see him. Uh - her. Uh - you okay?


Once she sees no one else around, Magdala realizes this must be the guy. This is the matchmaker's match. But he looks wrong. He looks like dumb and his clothes are ugly. This cannot be her romance; this is a joke.


Magdala: That stupid witch! I'm gonna kill her and boil her in soup! She tricked me! Where are we?

Boy: You don't know where we are?

Magdala: No I don't, stupid. Where are we?


The boy tells her their location. Luckily, it is not too far from her home, but it is a long walk. This was a joke to waste her time. Utterly infuriated, she begins walking. She is going to find that witch's house and give a piece of her mind.

The sky gets darker. A few hours have passed, and fireflies are buzzing around. The summer air warms the quiet road. An angry girl passes by. She is muttering things to herself about all the things she will do, why she was so dumb to believe her. She thrashes the branches in her way, breaking them off the trees. A can of soda sits on the side of the dirt road, and she kicks it furiously. Then she picks it up and throws it in a pond.

The walk gets longer. She stops by the road to rest a bit, and while she thinks about her anger, she falls asleep, with only the crickets making noise. The summer air keeps her warm. No one is in sight. When morning dawns, she stands up refreshed, but is still furious. She will not let it go. She even forgot all the good dreams she had that night. She continues her journey.

After a very long time getting closer to the cave, she finally sees it. The entrance is still covered in bushes, and she tears away at them. The cave is dark; she can see nothing. Groping in the darkness she finds where the gas lamp is. She turns it on while shielding her eyes. The light explodes in the dim blackness. She can see the furniture is still around. The cauldron sits where it was before. The table still has empty jars on it. Everything is the same, except no one is home. She goes into the back room, but no one is there either. There is a bed, a desk with scribbled notes on it. Most of them do not make any sense, but one is legible. It says “Those trees growing up are a dang fire hazard. Reminder to pull them out.”

Back in the living room, she looks at the jars on the shelves. The have been emptied, and there are a lot missing. “She must have taken off after she made a fool of me.” Where is that witch? She could be outside looking for some witch ingredients. If Magdala comes back later in the day, the witch might be home. She puts out the light and leaves for home, but not before taking the witch's spoon out of spite.

That night, Magdala makes her return. If the witch is home, she will be missing her spoon, and she cannot make her stupid spells and sandwiches. Into the woods she finds the entrance once again. Darkness. With a flashlight to guide her, she tears at the bushes stepping inside the house. Again, no one is home. Everything is left as it was. It could be that the witch left for a second. Then again, maybe that old hag could not get past the bushes anyway on her way out. All of this was very strange, and no answers were found. Angry still, and now lonely and scared, she throws the witch's spoon in a rage directly at the cauldron. It clangs loudly like a bell. Magdala leaves. She never wants to see this place again.

 

Many years have gone by. Magdala drives up to a rustic house, situated in a lonely field, a dilapidated chicken pen, broken fences. The place smells gross; the wooden stairs almost give way to her light weight. The screen door stands in front of her as she knocks on the door frame. “Mr. Haggart? Are you home?” A few rustling noises stir up the quiet in the house. Soon a doddering old drunkard slowly stumbles down the stairs. That is Mr. Haggart. Barely awake, he steps into view and addresses his guest.


Mr. Haggart: What do you want?

Magdala: Are you Mr. Haggart.

Mr. Haggart: (sigh) Yes, what do you want?

Magdala: I'm looking for your son.

(Mr. Haggart scowls at her.)

Mr. Haggart: Go away. Leave me be.

Magdala: I just need to know something Mr. Haggart, that's all. I'll leave you alone once I'm done.

Mr. Haggart: What do you want him for?

Magdala: I just need to know - if he's okay - or something. I'm wondering - if - he's okay - or where is he?

Mr. Haggart: I don't know. (Magdala tires to think of a lead.)

Magdala: Dead? Mr. Haggart: I don't know. I don't care.

Magdala: What happened?

Mr. Haggart: Woke up one day and he was gone. He must've left me just like everyone else.

Magdala: But you might know something, right?

(Mr. Haggart stares at her. He begins to walk away.)

Magdala: I'm so sorry, sir. I didn't know. I just was trying to find your son -

Mr. Haggart: Why?

(Magdala freezes. She cannot possibly explain why.)

Magdala: I had some important business with -

(She stops talking while wringing her hands.)

Mr. Haggart: If you had anythin' to do with it, I'd appreciate if you get out of my property right now.

Magdala: Can I ask you something? Was he in trouble?

(Mr. Haggart slams the door shut.)


Submitted: May 01, 2021

© Copyright 2021 horatio.wildebeest. All rights reserved.

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