Wolfbane & Baby's Breath

Wolfbane & Baby's Breath

A Story by Cherrie Palmer

With each step, the sounds from the village had fallen away. Horse and buggy clanging along cobbled pavers grew silent. The shrill voices of children were gradually replaced by floating clouds and rolling wheat. Milling birds darted for cover, preparing the sky for night. 

 

  

 

Twilight danced amongst the branches skipping light beams on the narrow path. Crossing the emerald threshold, tiny steps moved from meadow to forest. The lapsing day closed behind her, like a grand door to an inner kingdom, as the angle of the sun failed to shine through the thicket. Woodlands revealed deepening shadows, now sparsely sprinkled with light. 

 

Her chosen path seldom hosted people. This self-kept pathway is a thoroughfare for predator and prey. Her latched creel carried treats. Small toes skimmed across

the mossy ground, as a claret manteau shrouded her form, gentle strides let her meld into the landscape. 

 

Shadows merged and mingled, forming a wall of dusk, and her tiny lamp allowed a dim light to fall at her feet. Fluid motion twirled with the wind, and the eyes of

night followed. The canopy hid Little Bear from view, but the twinkling North Star declared her home is close.

 

As the cicada sang with tree frogs and crickets, the sound from the babbling brook joined in. Celest stops at the white willow. From her cape dangled a flying

dagger pendant with care. She removed the blade and extracted a bit of bark, adding it to her creel. In return, she left a handful of sunflower seeds for those that call this tree home. Soon she added a few clusters of a Bearded Tooth, a real find, considering it is so dark.

 

She was just about to reattach the pendant when a twig snapped. Her almond-shaped eyes flashed wide. The presence of another startled her. Celest stiffened the manteau hood fell, releasing cascading locks of deep ember, and she spun around to see the blue bear. He sports a black and grey mixed coat coloring him like a

blue roan.

 

"Can you spare a bit of honey?" asked the bear.

 

"For you always," said the girl. 

 

Celest smiled, opened her creel, broke off a piece of warm bread, and added a drizzle of honey. The brut sat and waited for his bounty, his ears twitching with anticipation. Just out of site she heard the persistent sniffing of another. 

 

"Trixie," she called out into the night, and a small red fox wiggled forward and laid at her feet, her reward a smoked sardine. Once the creel's latch reconnected, the two creatures withdrew into the darkness, leaving her to continue on her way. 

 

 

 

Celest hiked her hem to wade across moon reflected water. Halfway across, a smooth jade stone captured her attention. With ease, she snatched it up without

slowing her stride. The smell of pecan wood from her fireplace wafted on the breeze, and her cabin door stood at the ready. Pristine and white, trimmed in

pink, the birch door could withstand any assault, no matter what realm wheeled the danger. 

 

Bathed in enchantments, it would only open to her, and at the sound of her humming, honey-flavored milk steamed by the hearth. A vanilla bean and a cinnamon stick rested inside the mug, adding another layer of delight to the drink. 

 

She lived beside Mother Willow, whose billowing branches continually swayed to conceal the tidy little yard, the little cottage bequeathed to the mistress of the wood. Lined in foxglove flowers and wolfbane, the pale green house shinned. Sparse patches of ginger, rosemary, thyme, and sage lurked in every corner, not to mention a hutch of bees that pollinated the flowers. Their low rumble soothed the air as their beating wings fanned the hive. Fragrant aromas awakened the senses while the eyes were teased by the tapestry of blooming flowers.

 

From generation to generation, one of Fleur's granddaughters lived here. Celest claimed the thirteenth spot, and many thought she would be the last. She had a

true kinship to all living creatures. All except Canis Lupus, better known as the gray wolf. He had no mate, no coterie, and would never trust humans, not even

beautiful Celest. Not only would he never trust her, but he sought ways for her demise. 

 

Now in these modern times, no one believes in fairytales. So, instead, would you believe in a tale from a fairy. For I Sage, who helps tend the garden, would

like to give you my account of, wolf of the new moon.  

 

 

I broke from my herd existence, many moons ago when Fleur was just a baby. Her tender cooing echoed across dale and brook to my willow, and I could not resist. Her flaming scarlet hair, jolting eyes of seafoam green, and moon-kissed skin was just too lovely for humankind. My sister, Lilly, and I whisked her away to this cabin to

raise her as our own. Teaching her all we know. We who live in-between realms are both teacher and student to her and her offspring. 

 

Lilly made her an enchanted cloak. It is the deepest wine red sprinkled in morning dew and fermented wine dregs. So, a quick shake of the cape can intoxicate anyone standing near for an easy escape. I gave Fleur a lullaby that can lull the raging heart, and she pasted those things down to each new mistress of the woods. Until now, it is Celest who abides. 

 

We promised not to have favorites as we watch over the inhabitants of the cottage, but I must admit we failed, for Celest is a divination of perfection, and we love her move than life. With each passing year, we bestow a new

enchantment upon her.

 

But I digress; let me return to the tale of the beast. His merle coat is thick with black, grey, and brown. Soon he met up with the Blue the bear.

 

"You reek of humans," said the wolf.

 

However, Blue the bear lowered his gaze; the look he gave the wolf made the little fox hide.

 

"Speak not to me," said the bear, and walked off.

 

The forest calls the wolf the Eyes of Night, for he is always on the prowl. In silence, he crossed the brook, just a few paces behind Celest. He moved off the path so no charm would tell on him, but a small mouse scurried from his sight, stirring the leaves. Telling Celest that trouble followed. 

 

She lifted her flying dagger pendant over her shoulder to disclose any pursuer, but the little blade showed only darkness. Celest clipped it back to her cape and continued. The garden gate groaned with a kiss from a gentle zephyr; it parted wide for the mistress of the woods to pass. The squeaking hinges sang, and a loud thud vibrated behind her. Quickly, she turned to see who followed. 

 

Crouching low in a malevolent stance, the big, bad-tempered wolf displayed his weapons. His lips quivered around long fangs, and his deep growl created fear. Energy traveled from head to tail, ready to strike. Celest slipped her hand into an inner pocket, removing fine dust of wolfbane and baby's breath as she faced down this big bad wolf.


 

 

The huge beast leaped into the air to strike the deathblow; she let the zephyr carry the mixture.

 

"new moon, new you," she said, as the wolf knocked her to the ground. 

 

"How many times must you become a cub again?" She asked as he whined and kissed her neck, wiggling with delight. She snuggled up the little pup, and she wondered if this time it would be different. 

© 2021 Cherrie Palmer


Author's Note

Cherrie Palmer
maybe

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Reviews

Profoundly entertaining. The ending urged me to read it again... I did. It takes two readings, well, actually three to get the full impact of the story. What fun. You have captured magic. Good job.

Posted 8 Hours Ago


Cherrie Palmer

7 Hours Ago

Thank you Jane, :) I'm thrilled you enjoyed this chapter. Me and the grandkids had fun with it.
It will be more than hard to move back into my real world after reading the above... you've picked me high, high into the air and here and there wrapped in your words, I truly want to be! What a wonderful story.. has to be true, however, every single colourful heart~touching moment.. every colour and scent, every intention and heart.beat. You. Cherrie, have turned myth into magic.. start to finish. I'm staying put. x

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 1 Month Ago


Cherrie Palmer

1 Month Ago

:) I hope to add to this one the kids really liked it, and I did as well.
emmajoy

1 Month Ago

Yes, yes and YES! Glad you did, Cherrie... happy us. x
I try to fill my stories up with luscious descriptions of nature, but when I read one of your stories, I realize how much I'm lacking in this area! I can think of one or two sentences that might be as crusted with marvel as yours, but never paragraph after paragraph of such crafted magic! I have to admit, the wordcrafting is such that it distracts from the story. I just want to BE THERE, in this place you create with your words! (((HUGS))) Fondly, Margie

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 1 Month Ago


Cherrie Palmer

1 Month Ago

I'll tell you what I do (( kinda/ sorta :) ) the smaller the moment the more it should hold. Often p.. read more
barleygirl

1 Month Ago

Great share! Thanks for being so generous with your methods!
Cherrie Palmer

1 Month Ago

Well, like my writing, they are very simple :) I like when writers share the 'how' of it.
oh my..i love it... I just finished watching a marathon of Tolkien's Hobbit and desolation of Smaug so I fell right into your enchantment. Great imagery .. always like it when I have to look up new words and there were a few in this one. Its complete in its own right but would make for a wonderful novel. That's what I think Cherrie! I especially appreciate how your closing brought back the title. Fine job says i! There is a lesson as well .. how many times indeed .. do we need to learn that one change or another is good for us .. I do hope you keep working this one ... like others you have started here .. at the Cafe' ;)
E.

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 2 Months Ago


Cherrie Palmer

2 Months Ago

I am delighted you like this.
I'm going to turn this into a chapter and tack on a few more e.. read more
Einstein Noodle

2 Months Ago

i'm glad to hear that .. i will be on the lookout!
I like your re-imagining of a fabled character. These tales should be retold by each generation, adding elements and taking different perspectives. That’s what makes fables special, magical, remembered. Just like this piece. Enjoyed.

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 2 Months Ago


Cherrie Palmer

2 Months Ago

I love to recraft a old fairytale, and I know when my kids were growing up they loved it too. I hav.. read more
roarke

2 Months Ago

Ah, very nice. You’ve definitely increased the depth of the storyteller’s voice.
Its like watching the moon come up over a still lake in the mountains. This was a stunning picture. Relaxing and gentle, just rolling along. you captured quite the scene here...I loved it!

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 2 Months Ago


Cherrie Palmer

2 Months Ago

This is more of an illusion than a story, but I wanted it to have that mystical, magical, forest myt.. read more
Cherrie Palmer

2 Months Ago

Well I think I completed the story (or at least I'm very close).
A wonderful story shared dear Cherrie.
"Shadows merged and mingled forming a wall of dusk, and her tiny lamp allowed a dim light to fall at her feet. Fluid motion twirled with the wind, and the eyes of night followed."
The shadows of the night, the wandering of night owls and spirits. Always a interesting journey. Thank you for sharing the amazing tale.
Coyote

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 2 Months Ago


There are no words that will do justice to this invrediblr peice lf writing.

This review was written for a previous version of this writing

Posted 2 Months Ago


Cherrie Palmer

2 Months Ago

:) thank you, I hope to add to it today.

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8 Reviews
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Added on February 3, 2021
Last Updated on March 21, 2021
Tags: fairy tail

Author

Cherrie Palmer
Cherrie Palmer

Oakland, AR



About
I am a published poet and love poetry. My husband and I live near the White River, and love trout fishing. I find my surroundings a great inspiration to me. I also have two books on Amazon Kindle: O.. more..

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