In Need of a Champion

405 words

I hate this place. This forest full of creatures and plants, birds pulling at my hair, apples falling on my feet, grass staining the bottom of my gown. Even the trees and flowers seem to mock me, their rich hues and graceful curves overshadowing my beauty. But I have my mission. The hunter I need is in the woods today, stalking the deer. He will be my champion in the games on the Mount. I’ve been watching him. He’s agile and swift, his arrows fly true, he’s intelligent and not a little cunning. He will beat the other god’s representatives, by skill or by deception, I care not which.

Ah, he’s coming.  I sit on a tree stump, spreading my teal skirt around me, and wait. He approaches slowly, warily. He nears and I see the surprise in his face when he recognizes me, wandering no doubt why I am here. He falls to his knees and presses his face toward the damp earth, just inches from the mud that keeps sucking at my shoes. “My goddess,” he murmurs.

“Michael,” I respond. “I have a request.” Of course, he knows that any request from me is an order. He looks up, but remains kneeling. “I am at your service, as always.” He is handsome. Perhaps, I will take him back to the Great Hall now, allow him to spend the few days before the competitions begin in my rooms. After all, should he lose I won’t have a chance to enjoy him.

“I need a champion.” I see the question in his eyes. “We are holding a contest.” I don’t need to explain all the details to him, the prizes or the consequences of losing. He is after all merely mortal. He will do as I wish.

“Of course, my lady.”

“Good. Come.” I turn and begin walking toward the mist a few yards away, the path back to the Mount. He hesitates for a second, wanting to head back to town first, to gloat over his good fortune, perhaps, or tell his friends not to worry, but realizes that would be a folly. He follows me, staying a few feet behind as he should.

I will be so happy to get back to the Hall.

***

The contest is over and my champion has won. I graciously receive the congratulations of the others. This year will belong to me, to do with as I will.

‾‾‾‾‾‾

Dottie at Tink’s Place has a Monday Morning Flash Fiction challenge that I’m enjoying. Each Monday a new picture prompt will be posted and if you choose to participate you post your story on Friday – 350 words, give or take. I know the ending is rather abrupt, but I ran out of words.