Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Déjà Vu Week: The Orchid Flower

Prompt: Use a line from one of your favorite songs as well as one from one of your favorite books in a story.

Source: None

Response: The Orchid Flower

There once was a child who lived in a close-knit village at the bottom of a mountain. She was a lovely child, with a face as soft as rose petals and flowing hair the color of Spanish chocolate, but shy and quiet. Her name was Hecabe, so called for the orchid flowers that grew near the mountain, never-fading.

The mothers of the village watched the child sadly as she would go to the mountain every morning unaccompanied. The other children would play in the village streets or the pastures. Hecabe was often alone.

But she was a happy child. Far from the bustle and noise of the other children and the gossiping of the adults, she found simple happiness among the animals and flowers of the mountain. She could speak to them in a way that she could not speak to humans and the animals spoke to her.

Hecabe had a particular affinity with the birds of the air. She wondered what it was like to fly. In her imagination it felt like being carried on the strong mountain winds or being lifted by tufts of powdery clouds. Oh how she dreamed of being lifted by clouds and carried away on the wind.

One day while she was coming down from the mountain, Hecabe tripped. She rolled head over heels over the rocks and plants until she came to the bottom of the mountain. As she lay stunned she felt herself flying over valleys and over great vast oceans. She felt herself come to rest inside a castle room. The room was all purple and gold and in the center there was a canopied bed. A boy lay on the bed and in his hand was an orchid.

As she looked at him he opened his eyes and spoke. He called out to her and asked her to come to him. He reached to her and as she was walking toward him, a hand on her shoulder woke her.

An old woman stood above her. "Are you all right, dear?" she asked.

The woman looked old and humble and Hecabe instantly trusted her. But nothing is more deceitful than the appearance of humility. The woman, though certainly trustworthy, was not what she seemed.

The woman guided the child back to the village and the sparrows flew close overhead. When Hecabe slept that night she flew again. She saw the valleys and seas again and then found herself in the purple room.

The boy was surrounded by orchids and he called to her so plaintively that she thought her heart would break. When she woke in the morning, her room was full of flowers and a sparrow was perched on her window sill.

Hecabe went outside and the sparrow did not move. She spoke to it, but it did not respond. The sparrow had come with the unexplained flowers and the child knew that the bird knew where she could find the boy, but she could not convince the bird to tell her. And Hecabe wept because she knew she could not find the boy on her own.

And the old woman watched Hecabe as she cried.

At the end of the day when the child curled up in her bed she saw the boy before she even closed her eyes. The orchids were gone and he looked so sad her heart ached. He called to her once more and his eyes stared into hers. "I will be yours," he said. "I will be your father. I will be your lover. I will be yours."

Hacabe went to the mountain in the morning. There were no animals and the flowers were all gone. She sat on the mountain alone and dreamed of floating on the wind.

The old woman watched from a distance and wondered what the girl was thinking about as she stared out into the clouds.

Notes: Yeah . . . I don't know how this ends - it's just a little scene. My song line is "I'll be your father . . . I'll be your lover. I'll be yours." from "I'll be Yours" by Placebo and my book line is "Nothing is more deceitful than the appearance of humility." from "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen.

This is written in the style of Hans Christen Anderson (who I LOVE) and I was hoping to do more with it, but I went over my time limit as it is.

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