NOTE: The usual weekend silly link will go up on Sunday, February 19th.
For now, I must post an entry for Anna Meade's beautimous blog contest. Check out the details at her blog, Yearning for Wonderland. (Short version of the details shown below, along with a glowing roster of participants.) Don't forget to read the other magnificent entries!
Considering the conditions, it is not surprising I crashed. A twilight patrol through the farthest reserves of Yellowstone in winter is asking for trouble and, ranger or not, I should never have gone alone.
All I remember is the frozen floor of the valley rising to meet me at an alarming angle, and at a speed that suggests I crashed the snowmobile spectacularly - a death-inducing maneuver from which I should never have awakened as I did: sprawled upon the ice, shivering and blinking at the stars above me.
I shivered again, and sat up. In the near distance, a herd of bison watched from an exposed hillock, near a wind-blown tribe of arthritic conifers. I thought I remembered seeing them just before my world-tilting crash - just as they were now: waiting, silent, alert.
Has no time passed? I wondered. I shifted on the ice, tried to ignore my chattering teeth - and nearly swallowed them in the next moment.
A body lay on the ice beside me, pinned by the upturned snowmobile. Even before I stared into the ice-purpled face, I knew who it was.
I can't be dead. I'm freezing cold, I told myself.
My death-self was blue and stiff. I shivered again. Ghost or not, I was cold - and naked, I realized with bleak humor. Worse and worse.
A dark shadow moved near me, and I jumped. One of the bison had moved away from its herd and stood before me, gilded in frost, questioning me with its fathomless eyes. Then it lowered its great horned head and spoke.
"Welcome, She-Between-Rivers," he said. "We have waited long for you."
"My...name is Holly," I squeaked.
The bison stamped a heavy fore-hoof. "You are She-Between-Rivers," he repeated. "We know who you are. Do you?"
~~~~~~~~~~~~ Contest Details and Delightful Participants ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Yellowstone is my favorite National Park, enjoyed the read!ReplyDelete
I'm glad! Thanks for reading!Delete
Wow! AMAZING!! You're an incredible writer, and I love this piece. If you ever expand it to novel-size, I'd love to read it. ^_^ReplyDelete
Thanks! This is actually related (in a backhanded, tangential way) to my current WIP, which is why this is what popped out when I thought of faeries. Go figure.Delete
Wonderful! This makes me want to read more. :)ReplyDelete
Angela, completely caught me by surprise as I didn't think this kind of milieu would be of interest to you. Loved it except now I feel cold! So beautifully done!ReplyDelete
Usually it wouldn't; but somehow it fell out of my brain and I ran with it. Glad I did. I rather like it. :-)Delete
Your writing is always lovely!Delete
Really well done. And unexpected, leaving me wanting more.ReplyDelete
Aww yay! I'm so glad!Delete
This has a very distinct voice, Angela. Bravo!ReplyDelete
Thank you for entering :)
My pleasure! It was loads of fun --- thanks for hosting!
I don't envy you the decision process, though....with that many phenomenal entries, this is going to be a tough call!
Nicely creepy, love it :)ReplyDelete
Tragic, magical, and creepy all in one. Nice piece. Helpful reminder not to go snowmobiling alone at night. :)ReplyDelete
LOL true enough!!Delete
This is excellent - you get a real sense of presence from the bison and you've captured so much in the words available; the realisation, the cliff hanger suspense. Original concept too!ReplyDelete
Aww thanks! :DDelete
Brilliant opening. Just the right amount of setting and suspense, and the perfect ending, too. And it feels like there could also be more to this story. Excellent description!ReplyDelete
Thanks so much! I dunno, maybe there could be more..... *thinks*Delete
That moment of epiphany horror so perfectly captured...wonderful!ReplyDelete
Thank you! :-)Delete