A storm was rolling in. Lightning darted among the dark clouds and the wind began howling, moaning, pushing the tempest across the waves. At the first deep roar of thunder, the great dane standing on the balcony beside Eliya looked up at her and whined, urging her to come back inside. She patted its head, but ignored the plea. Another grumble vibrated through the stone and it rushed inside, not waiting for her to change her mind. A loyal companion, no doubt, but afraid of the thunder and too gentle to be much use as a guard, she adored it, but was happy that it was safe, probably curled up on her bed, its steel grey coat nearly the same color as her satin spread.
The storm frightened Eliya also, not the noise, or the gale, or the torrential downpour it brought- the palace was quite strong, had stood on this promitory for a hundred year, staring out at the ocean, watching for friends and foes alike, protecting the royal family inside its thick stone walls. It was the images she saw in the blackness that chilled her blood: pale, gnarled hands pulling at the edges of the thunderheads, broadening them, filling them; and a face glaring through the breaks, amber eyes glowing, shriveled lips moving in a silent monologue. So, the old Queen was still alive as the villagers had whispered, growing stronger in her exile, plotting.
Eliya pulled her dark hair back and tied a ribbon around it. She closed here eyes, blocking out the force she was facing, and held her hands out in front of her, palms facing out toward the black billows. She concentrated, focussed only on stopping the storm where it was, a couple of miles out to sea. She would not let that woman’s poisonous influence into the land, not tonight.
Her husband came out to the deck. He saw Eliya silhouetted against a clearing sky, the storm breaking up before it met the shore. He reached her just as she fainted, exhausted, and caught her gently.
When she opened her eyes again, she was laying on the long sofa in front of the fire. “Michael,” she said to her husband who was seated in a chair facing her, waiting for her to awaken. “She’s back. We need a plan.”
Okay, so it’s not an actual story, more like a scene from the middle of a story, but it’s what I had time for today.
Dottie at Tink’s Place is our wonderful host of the Monday Morning Flash Fiction challenge. 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. This one is actually last week’s picture though, I had just never gotten around to writing anything for it until today. You’ll have to head over to her blog to see today’s picture.