The Mulatto

The Mulatto

A Story by Rawhide

The Mulatto

With trembling hands, I took his hand in mine and said, "Father, pray for me. I fear that God no longer listens to me." Before he could respond, I told him about the Mulatto.

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"I offered to buy Maria anything she wanted. She cupped my face with her hands and kissed me softly on the lips. As she pulled back from me, she exhaled. Her breath was warm on my face despite the heat beating down on us. She opened her eyes and looked into mine and said, 'I do not want your money.' When she told me what she wanted, I stepped back as if slapped. 

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Maria was the most beautiful woman I had ever known. Still is. I used to lie in bed at night and stare at her. I would secretly pray for her to awaken just so I could look into her green eyes and caress her copper-skinned cheeks again. For the first time in my life, I felt really alive, really desired. I owed all of that to her. 

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Did I love her? More than I loved myself!! But she was a Mulatto. She would never be accepted by the socialites of New Orleans as anything above a mistress. That was the highest standing a Mulatto could have, mistress. Yet she wanted me to marry her. To elevate her higher than than gentle society would allow. 

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I left her standing outside her apartment without even giving her an answer. Such a question did not deserve one. I thought that if I came back later, she would be in a more sensible mind. 

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When I returned to her apartment, it was at the request of a constable. He had been dispatched from the station and did not know why my presence was required. I saw a face I recognized right away and I demanded, 'Chief, what's going on here?' 

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The chief told me to let them inside. There was a dark stain on the front of the door. In the middle of the stain, a pig's foot was nailed to the door. The stain was blood, and I silently prayed for it to be pig blood. The chief explained that it is a local voodoo charm to keep out evil spirits and only the owner of the apartment could remove the pig's foot and enter. 

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I put on the gloves that the chief offered me and pulled the pig's foot off of the nail. It was still warm and oozing blood. A recent kill. I opened the door and walked inside. Every space of wall in the apartment was painted with symbols in dark red. More pig's blood, I presumed. No one there knew what they meant. Across the room on the bedroom door was another pig's foot. 

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I removed the foot and we entered the bedroom. The walls in there were painted with the same symbols as the main room. On the dresser was a large jar filled with a dark fluid. A loop of twine encircled the lid, and from the twine hung another pig's foot. By this time, I was a little tired of handling warm pig parts. I didn't wait for word from the chief, I just pulled it off and threw it across the room. 

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As I reached for the lid, it flew off on its own power and the glass shattered. The dark fluid filled the room. I couldn't see the end of my nose. One by one I heard the others as their bodies hit the floor. It was the sound that a large roast makes when dropped. Each thump was followed by another until they stopped. 

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When the fluid cleared, there were fourteen bodies laying on the floor. No clothes, no skin, eyes open. All dead. I was safe because I was the one that had released it. I realized that the charms were to keep the evil in, not to keep it out. 

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Marie and I are to be wed in three days. Is there any hope for my soul?" 

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The old priest said as he wrested his hand from mine, "There is no penance great enough for what you let loose on the world. I can offer you no absolution."
 


© 2009 Rawhide



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Reviews

I like where you are going with this, but I feel like there are many places where you can expand and do some developing. For example, the begining and end feel rushed. I'm excited to know more about Maria and this taboo relationship! Good start!

Posted 6 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

My goodness! Living on a Caribbean island, I understand a lot of the voodoo and such. This was a well written story, but I think it deserves to be written as a book though. Just curious to see what happens next.

Posted 8 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.

Very creepy, well written, and captures the nuance of the old South (particularly Louisiana).

Posted 8 Years Ago


1 of 1 people found this review constructive.


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Added on January 17, 2009
Last Updated on January 17, 2009

Author

Rawhide
Rawhide

Maple Valley, WA



About
He puts his quill to parchment to preserve his story. Eons from now, no one will be able to fathom the depths of the suffering he felt nor the expanse of the suffering he caused. He will be villified,.. more..

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