Today is the second Wednesday of the "I Love Dark YA" Blogfest and the challenge is to write a flash fiction piece of 500 words or less about this photo.
I'd been engulfed in the shadow of darkness for so long, that when it withdrew its presence the light blinded me. I threw my hands over my eyes to block the pain that shot through to my skull. A few moments passed and I dared let a sliver of light seep in through my fingers. I squinted to see the horror before me. As far as the eye could see was desolate and barren. Not one blade of grass grew on the hillside.
The evil that caused this destruction still lingered in the dark mist that had settled to the valley floor and it took all my courage to take my first step. The decay crunched beneath my tender, bare feet. With each additional step came pain as thorns drew blood, leaving a trail of crimson behind me. It was nothing compared to the heart wrenching sorrow I felt when I reached the top of the hill. There was no life, only more darkness. More death. More evil.
I clenched my fists in the smooth satin fabric of my unblemished white dress. How had it remained so pristine with all the blackness that surrounded me? The contrast was eerie and left me wondering if this was a dream and not a living nightmare in reality. Had I fallen asleep? Had I drifted into some place beyond any dream I'd had before? I tried to remember how this had happened, how I had gotten here and where the shadow of darkness had come from, but my memories were a jumble of unrelated images that didn't make sense.
Someone called my name in the distance. A deep familiar voice. I turned toward it but found no one there. I clamped my hands over my ears and closed my eyes, wishing my world would go back to the way it was before. When I opened my eyes again, the shadow had returned, leaving me blind to my surroundings. This is hell, I thought. It had to be.
"Help me," I whispered.
Less than a moment passed before strong arms lifted me into an embrace. I had no fear. No question of who was holding me. No wonder if the warm body that cradled me meant to do harm. I knew his smell. I remembered his soft deep voice as it whispered my name. I craved his comfort and forgiveness.
A burst of warm air billowed around us as I envisioned his mighty wings lifting us from the blackened earth. I leaned into him, letting him take me away form the darkness and into the bright light that filtered in around us. But it wasn't heaven I saw when my feet finally touched ground, but the safety of my own room. I looked up into his steel blue eyes and saw peace. He tapped the tip of my nose with his finger.
"Try to stay out of trouble," he said.
It isn't easy being my guardian angel.
Don't forget to come to the launch party for BOUND, EXILED & BECOME this Friday, 11/11/11 at 11:00am on Twitter. Use the hashtag #DarkCARMA. Lots of prizes and fun to be had.