As the Crone Flies

Mmmm.” The Chamberlain stared down his crag of a nose. “A rather crude representation.”

The chill current of air that danced around the apprentices feet seemed to whisper into his bones in a strangers voice. He shivered in his robes and looked down at the squat clay figure on the scarred tabletop. It was short, with pendulous breasts sagging over a rounded belly. Rough gashes represented eyes and mouth on the boulder of a head. “You had said that you believed that the Crone would strike tonight, sir, and that it only need be ‘indicative of her visage’. I had thought that you were in a hurry, sir, so I didn’t worry overmuch about the art of the thing.”

“Mmmm. Just so, just so.” Echoes travelled slowly through the air of the stone chamber, bouncing a gentle oh-oh-oh back and forth. “I have many preparations still to make before the light is swallowed. Prepare the altar for me, I will be back before that candle burns to black.” His finger, all bone and knuckle with just the palest hint of flesh, extended towards a fat and guttering candle shoved into the top of a bottle. The flame was yellow gold, with a blush of red creeping into the bottom. After the red would come the green, and after the green the black.

“Yes, sir, I’ll have it waiting for you, exactly the way that we planned, I swear to it.” The apprentice bowed, his hands grasping each other inside voluminous sleeves. As soon as the Chamberlain was gone from the room, however, the candle burned to blue. Dropping to his knees so fast that the stone nearly drove him to cry out, he prostrated himself before it. “Mistress.”

The blue flame flared bright as morning and thickened, wending its twisty way upon whatever eddies of air it could find. It’s tip elongated, touching the boy on the back of his neck, bidding him rise. “Smaaassshhh iiit…”, a bodiless voice hissed in his ear.


this week’s Trifecta Writing Challenge was to use the 3rd definition of the word crude:
3: marked by the primitive, gross, or elemental or by uncultivated simplicity or vulgarity


Categories: Fiction | Tags: , , , , | 18 Comments

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18 thoughts on “As the Crone Flies

  1. Oooooo! Creepy!

  2. Yeah, I’m thinking, a candle flame starts talking to me, I’m doing what it says. Assuming the Chamberlain doesn’t have powers of his own, in which case the apprentice is in a very awkward position. 😛

    • ~snicker~ my initial reaction will always be, don’t tell me what to do disembodied candle flame voice! I think he has powers, but apparently not to see what’s snicking by right underneath his craggy nose 😉

  3. Yeah, the blue flame is scary. I like Michael’s analysis…I’ll go with that 🙂

    • I thought maybe blue would be a cool color to representthe bad guy, because it’s usually a warm and comforting color

  4. I love your language – for instance – indicative of her visage, and, I didn’t worry overmuch about the art of the thing. I can hear those echoes bouncing, that’s cool. And the meaning of the colors as the candle burns is a nice point of interest. Good ending with the blue flame touching the back of his neck and hissing. Nice writing!

  5. Oh love all that’s hinted and not told.. love the betrayal of the apprentice .. and how you used the word crude. Thank you for the read

    • I think Game of Thrones is getting into my headcanon, I see traitors everywhere 🙂 Thank you so much for reading, I’m very glad that enjoyed it.

  6. You are a very good writer-like person, and my jealousy knows no bounds. Also, “Smaaassshhh iiit…” would be an awesome album title.

    • Hahaha! I’ll pretend stick a safety pin through my nose for the cover art (pretend because I’m not 17 anymore and I think I’ll stick to tattooists jabbing me with pins and needles!)

  7. I really like the atmosphere and imagery in this story. Interesting times ahead for the Chamberlain and the apprentice, I’d say…

    • Thank you so much, I’m really glad that you liked it 🙂 I was kind of glad I hit the word limit, because I wasn’t sure who I wanted to win…

  8. Draug419

    Ooo a traitor. That’s always fun. I love the detail in your writing. That finger oooo 😀

  9. Such a fascinating little scene with a nice twist at the end. The little details made it come alive.

    Thank you for linking up. Please don’t forget to return for the voting!

    • Well thank you very much 😉 I’m fairly certain the Chamberlain would’ve been in trouble had I had a few more words to play with…

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