Glisten #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

shimmer

 

Is this you, running toward me, in the dying light of our star? Is it you, or your double, or your servant? I know it cannot be you, how much I wished it were. But I know: I lost you, eons ago, far away. Tonight I remember, the long voyage, the hopes, the battles. And you, your beauty, your strength, the knight this girl dreamed of. I see you, slaying the devils, archangel in a shiny armour. I see the broken sword.

And now this: a dying star, a dead sea. All hopes lost, so few of us left, waiting for the end, on the glistening sand.

Keep #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

keep

 

It may surprise you, no doubt, but I am still here. Yes, in this old keep. It has been my home, all these centuries, since the fatal siege that killed most of my people. Well, most of them, not all. You see, below the keep is a long tunnel. Its access could be easily blocked. At the other end is the sea. We had plenty of provisions, all the weapons we could use, we survived for years. As you can see, from here I could look at the traitor, over there, in what was our tower. One clear morning, that was before we collapsed the entrance to our domain, I killed him, one careful shot from my longbow. Ha ha! That was a kick in the ants nest. They tried everything, water, fire, poison… It was too late for them.

So, you may well ask. What did we do all these years? Well, you know your history, or rather what they, and their ‘historians”, told you. The usurpers stayed. We occasionally went out and killed a few of their mercenaries, but this was hopeless. The people were terrified. We lived from fishing, a little hunting, which was more dangerous. My companions died, one by one. I held their funeral at sea, during the night. Finally, I was on my own. More years passed. I am still here. I don’t think anyone can see me, but I have no idea what I look like, now. By the way don’t trust those images of me in museums: I know they made me look awful. As they say, the victors write history, and have pictures made of their victims.

Not that I see myself as a victim any longer.

Web #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

armour

 

Reaching this corridor had taken time, and my companion and I were exhausted. When was the last time human beings had visited these walls? We had to decipher puzzles, and pick complicated locks. We had lost our way many times, fearing to fall through some traps, and crash down to deep and horrific dungeons.

The surface of the armour was a dull grey, a thin dust covering those parts not hidden behind the cobwebs. Was this a sentinel? Or a witness, to the horrors that had closed the house to posterity? We thought of the Commendatore, the victim of a terrible crime. The man, or should we say the creature, who had worn the armour, was tall, and rich. The exquisite finish of the metalwork, the still luxurious leather of the joints, all showed this was a work of art, brutal, signalling the strength and power of its owner.

The corridor was dark, only faintly lit by a distant window. The same thin dust covered walls and the carpeted floor. The solicitor had not not known the details of ownership, merely that the property was for sale. For a fortune. There was a large park around the house, century-old trees. And many works of art inside, he’d said. The owner, whoever, or whatever that was, had not yet allowed visitors. We’d taken on ourselves to have a look.

There was very little furniture, but some ancient prints on the walls. The air was dry, not stale, as if, somehow, fresh air was sometime allowed to penetrate the house. We decided to take a look at the prints. A few steps away we were looking at a delicate drawing… of the same armour, with a text we could not read. We heard a faint noise, a light friction sound. There was now way this was possible…

The high helm, which must have covered the skull of the knight, was now turned toward us.

Fallen leaves

photography of trees near river during fall

Photo by Alexandra Shchelkunova on Pexels.com

This year it may have arrived late, but now, it is here. The time of the year when shadows play tricks, shallow shapes appear, as if conjured up by a malicious genie, and then disappear, erased. This lovely vision may not be real, those blond hair, flying in the light wind, are not what they seem: as I got nearer, anxious to see the face, it’s nowhere, it’s just me, and some hidden gnome, invisible, yet present, and I think, laughing silently. The light is low, diffused, under the trees one does not recognise anything, cannot see through the light mist: I see you, but is it you? Or an ancient witch pretending to be you?

The waters of the canal reflect a deep green that doesn’t not come from the sky, but from an elsewhere, a deep, unfathomable to us, humans. We lost the skill to see this light, but was it ever a skill, or rather, a right? Gold and brown, grey and a colour which is undefined, a wavelength our eyes don’t capture. Dark knights ride in the clouds, bearing runes that may signal our end, our dismissal from what is, still, paradise. I feel small, in a world that, for now, and the next few months, no longer smiles at me. Those ghosts are not my friends, they merely remind me that life is short.

And Winter is coming.

A novice #fivewords

Weekly Writing Challenge #167

KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Their clear voices rose above the valley, as the bell called the novices to practice. They were there to serve, to prepare for the day when they might be accepted, but none of them had any clue as to what they would have to endure.

Picture: South Portal of Chartres Cathedral, Martyrs, By Medieval sculptor – photo TTaylor, 2005, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=888289

Circle #writephoto

Circle

circle-of-stones

 

They were six of them, and their leader may have been Galahad. There, they fought, back to back, from one dawn to the next, for days and nights, against the armies of Evil.

There they died, for, then, knights never surrendered. And there, the circle of stones remind us: the battle continues, and they watch us, puzzled, at times amused, more often annoyed. So much effort, for such so small people…

Distant #writephoto

Distant

horizon1

 

Around them the circle of stones would be their refuge, their protectors against the demons of the night. She looked away toward the snow-covered hills:

“There will be our home. In the morning we will cross those fields, and then climb up. But tonight we will rest. The ancient warriors are there: look! They were expecting us…”

She showed him the stones, some erect, some lying, as if asleep.

He felt, somehow, reassured: they were now in her country, not so far from them, he knew, they would soon meet her tribe. He would follow the rites. He would shed his blood. Later, they would receive him in their rank.

Later still, they would have a child.

Mists #writephoto

Mists

fog

 

The ground was frozen, and as he looked up at the pale disc of their star, recognising the landscape in the mists, inhaling the air, he remembered the desert, the infinite sand, the temples in the dunes. He was back. After all these years. Who would recognise him now? He had been a young man then, almost a boy still, who liked to play in those fields, who enjoyed feeling his growing strength, his supple body… He remembered their departure, the colours of the flags, the hymns, the long line of young men, just like him. He remembered her face, the laughter, the cries, the prayers – the wind in her hair.

He remembered the sand, rivers of blood flowing in the sand, the scorching heat of the day, the frozen nights… So many dreams scattered to the desert winds. Now, he was alone, perhaps the only one to have come back.

But who was left who would recognise this ghost, lost in the mists?