Second Chapter [Preview]: Fragile Vows

Word transmits fast, like blood pouring from a freshly slit throat. Rutlers broken walls are pouring with whisper. “Some silly cunt thinks he is clever making shit like that up in my town!”, “The Fuckin’ cheek”. “Wait ‘til I find out which peasant dare speak of the fuckin’ forbidden round here”. Trix’s bark wasn’t worse than her bite. She could sniff out a leaf amongst the trees in a forest. She’s potent, and she’s heard word of the sightings around town, and nothing around the village exists without her knowing. She’s dressed prestige, foreign white silks, covering her whole body and hair over the coat of armour she undoubtedly has on. She starts at daybreak, marching round the market place tipping barrels of produce upside down in a rage with her squadron of guards. The town folk dare say nothing. The market stall owners, struggling for wealth in their poverish clothes stand by and watch their homemade produce destroyed by fierce hands. She halts. Stops by a blacksmith where Gabriel works for a glance at his new produce. “Oy, what thou got for me this time, mutt?”, “better be something fuckin’ useful this time”. She’s firm with Gabriel, she knows her position, he knows his. “got…got thee little sumat you might like Ms”. His stutter is pitiful. He hands her a freshly shaped dagger, looks like it had been smoothed for a god. “Thought tha might be able t… use it quickly, being light en’ all”. Trix looks at the metal, inspects the quality, her face is cold. “Thy common little accent makes me sick” she confesses, before sliding the dagger and popping it into her long coat, rushing off with her party.

The paths part like a polarised magnet when Trix is storming around the village. Peasants and common folk seem to gather up their coins for the day and retreat to their shacks. There’ll be no more earnings for today. It’s a frozen desert by the time she reaches the courtyard. They’ll be no religious practice today. It has reached midday, the darkness from the night refuses to part. They’ll be no light today. She’s here for good reason. Amongst the darkened snow, one of her associates notice a homeless boy, shrieking under the debris of a broken shack. She sniffs the air, she can smell his dirt. She approaches him calmly, lunges down on one knee and peels his hands away from his face. “What’s thy name, squire?”. She asked softly, as if not to wake him. ‘Reggie’, the boy shakingly whispers. “Please don’t hurt me miss, please…ple”, “I’m not going to” She interrupts him. Her knights stand, obediently, like sitting dogs. “Miss, I have nowhere to go, My ma’ was killed…Plague.”. Reggie’s eyes flood with tears, he grabs Trix’s hand tightly. He has no faith, god has failed him. Trix swallows spit, looks up at her squad and orders, “Take him”. Two gigantic, mammoth of knights takes one arm each and lift him to his feet. His eyes are red, sore. Trix takes her pearly white glove off, wipes the boy’s cheek, and gives him the most minute part in her lips. “Have faith, Reggie”.

I was angry with my friend: I told my wrath, my wrath did end. I was angry with my foe: I told it not, my wrath did grow. – William Blake



First Chapter [Preview]: Welcome to the White

Instantaneously, Favian realises that he must check on his mother’s wellbeing before he can treat himself to a feed. Mother hasn’t been well since his father passed. She has been seen by town folk hobbling round markets, murmuring profanities at herself. The thought for the local is she blames herself for the loss of Favian’s father. Drowning in condemnation, she’s far too ill to speak about it. He doesn’t have to travel far, so he bustles to the shack his mother resides with struggle, lifts the animal quilt guarding the entrance to find mother sat, cross legged, back towards him. This isn’t procedure, she is usually laid on her bunk resting. But just now she seems so upright, so hard, like stone. Her back is turned to Favian and it appears like she’s fiddling with something because there’s a fiddling click in front of her. Inching towards her, calmly, as to not alarm her, he can hear the words in low tones, deep enough to apprehend. “Mamusk do ronto, presk chu banda, MAMSKA!”. She screams out and rolls coal like blocks along the floor in front of her. “MOTHER!” he yelps! “Mother what in the high gods’ names are thou doing!” it’s rhetorical. He knows exactly what she was doing. She looks back at him, her soul absent. Her look is phantom, like her eyes and body are disbanded. Favian wraps his hands around her tightly but sensitively, braces her body with grace. He holds her. Calming. He whispers “Mother, please stop”. She breathes a deep breath and leans on him, which assures him she’s back in the room, safely.

The coal like blocks are confiscated. Hid in the inside pouch of Favian’s satchel. He grabs a pot and rests it over the fire to make his mother some tea. She is still sitting on the rough, upright and tight bodied. ‘You should get rest mother’ he says. She nods obediently, pauses slightly and then straggles herself up. She hobbles to her bunk, lies down, tense, rigid. Favian brings her over the tea and explains his necessity to head off back to duty, “are thou going to be well mother, whilst I am gone?”, he asks, another rhetorical question. She pauses. At this moment, he contemplates the question, was he asking her a question for the present time? or consciously asking her in general, ‘will thou be alright for good?’. She looks at him, deep into his conscience and says “Favian, are thou going to be well?” then prods his chest with her index finger, aggressively. He finds her response humorous, impudent. So, he gives her a genuine smile and replies, “Yes mother, I’m grand, always”. She shakes her head, eyes black in the night, before finding rest on her rags for comfort. He finds this chilling; her actions, her words, it’s unearthly. He concedes the thoughts, disregards it, it’s her madness.

There is just so much hurt, disappointment and oppression one can take…The line between reason and madness grows thinner. — Rosa Parks

gothic woman