Today on Drabble Wednesday I venture into the deep, dark woods where witches, wolves and wishes lurk beyond the shadows…
The Wolves of Wickham
Everyone knew not to venture into the forests of Wickham. Every soul in the village, from the tiniest tot to the most elderly, stayed far away from the woods. Bad things happened to a person when they went into the trees. Most never came out, and those that did, well… screams and blood usually accompanied them.
Yet… here was Frederick, blundering about the underbrush, crashing through the branches in panic trying to find his way home, trying in flee the forest. Behind him something growled, and then another something.
Poor Frederick. You see, the wolves of Wickham are always hungry.
Such a harmless figure, the old woman, a plaid woolen shawl—the colour of brown earth—drawn over her stooped head and shoulders. She leans heavily on her gnarled cane as she moves, her thin hand unconsciously smoothing a wrinkled skirt and stained apron. At first careless glance she presents the familiar picture of an innocuous granny.
But first glances can deceive. Look closer. Those stains on her apron, are they red? Like blood? Her smile, does hold a touch of wicked, a malicious grin? And those sinewy fingers, have they worked dark magic, perhaps murdered man and beast alike?
The full silver moon sprinkles stardust over the forest canopy. Light filters though the trees to cast a radiant reflection in the still waters of an old wishing well. The moon knows the ancient well intimately; they are enduring friends of long acquaintance and secrets.
A figure approaches the well. The moonlight shifts, ever so subtly, lighting her path. She tosses the golden coin she clutched, and it arcs, then hits the water with a splash, falling deep within the well.
“I wish to marry Eli.”
The water shimmers with magic cast.
In the morning Eli's wife will be dead.