CW: All that glitters is not gold.

“During a lunar eclipse, you find a glowing rock in your backyard.”
– a prompt for this week’s CW piece.
[Source: @DailyPrompt]

 

The moon was bloody that night.

I remember as if it was yesterday.

Margaret was working the night shift, and I was tasked with putting our 14-month-old daughter to sleep.

After giving her a bath, I gently placed her in the crib, sat down comfortably in the armchair, and rocked her with my left foot. As expected, within minutes, she was sound asleep, and so I quietly stood up, and went to the kitchen, leaving the bedroom door open, just in case she would wake up.

The timer on the oven, which I have previously preset, was counting down the last cooking minute.

“Just in time” – I thought to myself, switching the timer off in time to stop it from going off and potentially waking up my angelic girl.

Once I pulled the pork roast out of the oven, plated it, and sat at the dinner table, I turned the TV on and lowered the volume a bit.

“Today’s full moon is a special one” – the announcer could still be heard.

“It is crimson read” – he added.

I looked out of the window in the living room, and saw a sliver of the moon behind the tree line.

Having finished my dinner, I decided that the blood moon was a good enough excuse to pull out my dusty camera, on which I spent my first few paychecks, but which I have not used in ages. Plus, movement and fresh air are always recommended. There was hilly terrain just a few minutes from where we lived. No houses were built there, so the view would be unobstructed, I thought.

I prepared the buggy, then gently picked Meg from the crib, and placed her in the stroller. She only slightly stirred while I was moving her, but then went right back to sleeping calmly.

She was such a great kid. She slept a lot, did not cry much, developed appropriately for her age, etc.

Together with Meg, we went to the tallest hill in the area. While she slept, I snapped multiple gorgeous photos of the moon. I still have them somewhere. Even though the crimson moon was eerie, everything around was so calm and still that I lost track of time. Relaxed and with a camera full of pictures, we embarked on our journey down the hill and back home.

Within minutes we were back at out white picket fence. As I reached out to open the gate, I saw something, which I thought was a shooting star. However, it disappeared before I could even think of a wish.

Suddenly, the neighbors’ dogs started barking aggressively. 

I looked around, trying to spot anything out of the ordinary, but saw nothing of that kind. 

As we entered our backyard, Meg started to cry uncontrollably. It went from just a whimper to a full on shriek in a matter of seconds. 

“Stupid dogs woke her up” – I thought to myself, cursing under my breath. 

When I picked up my girl to calm her down, in the corner of my eye, I saw something glowing just a few feet away. 

“Hush, baby girl” – I said to her, as I placed her back in the stroller.

I took a few steps forward and stopped.

The object looked as if it was on fire, but I felt no heat. 

I took a few more steps and knelt down in front of it. After reaching out for it and pulling back a few times, I finally built up the courage and picked it up.

To my surprise, it was not warm at all. In fact, it seemed to be a few degrees cooler than the human body. From up close, the glowing rock looked like a 3D model of the galaxy – countless, beautiful stars on a purple – green – blue background. 

It almost hypnotized me, but Meg’s cries pulled me out of the trance. 

“Look at this” – I said to her, as I placed the rock by her side.

It was my hope that she would find it interesting, and would stop crying. It was so unlike her. 

“I don’t know if this is related at all, Father, but I just want you to know everything”

“Do you still have the rock?” – asked the priest.

“I kept it, but it disappeared during our last move. I can’t find it anywhere” – I explained.

Meg laid on the bed, with her arms and legs tied to the posts.

Her flesh was the color of rot.

Greenish purulence was oozing out of her mouth.

Her eyes were bloodshot.

After that night, Meg was never the same.

Always afraid, jumpy and crying.

Her development stalled.

While she was able to walk by the age of 3, at 4, she still had not uttered a single word. When she turned 5 last month, she finally started talking, but what came out of her mouth sounded gibberish. Like she was speaking in ancient tongues. 

Weird things would happen around the house for years, but we never linked it to Meg. Now, however, with the recent developments, we are worried that she might be possessed. 

“What do you think, Father?” – I asked.

“Join me in prayer” – he said and reached out for my hand.

***

How did you like this story? 

Any feedback will be greatly appreciated. 

Constructive criticism welcomed.

***

P.S. As always, you are more than welcome to use this prompt to inspire your post. If you decide to write something, be sure to pingback to this post, so that I can get an alert and check out your post. (A post on how to do pingbacks can be found here.) If pingbacks are not your thing, feel free to simply leave a link to your piece in the comment section below. The more, the merrier!

Stay golden,

signature5c0482f66325e1

***

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49 thoughts on “CW: All that glitters is not gold.

Add yours

  1. Goah Goldie, you never fail to take me shiver with these stories. Love how mysterious it is.
    Meg had some sort of trauma, I am sure.

    Another quality of a good writer is that like an actor. Sometimes your stories make me think you’re an old man, other times a teenager.
    Now I am convinced that your the mother to a young child.
    You described the mother – baby relationship really nicely.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow, Goldie! Is there any way I can praise this piece without sounding fake. I enjoyed reading this story. I loved the twist, and I loved that it’s a gripping story. I like how each line compelled me to read the next. It truly is an intriguing story.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. The narrator would invite the Reverend Father to his house so he can deliver Meg from whatever is possessing her body. Meg would die during the cleansing. Many years later, a family will move into Meg’s old house only for Meg’s spirit to haunt them all.

        No, wait. That’s too cliché 😂
        How about this one. The story you just told about Meg and her father is just a bedtime story a mother is reading to her son. When she’s done telling the story, her son asks, “What happens next?!”
        She smiles and replies, “Sky’s the limit. What is your imagination telling you?”

        The young lad talks about a happy ending, one where Meg becomes her old self again.
        His mum smiles at the positivity, then she kisses him goodnight, turns off the light, and leaves his room.

        Minutes later, the young boy hears a ruffling sound. He opens his eyes and is shocked to see a young girl, crouched at the corner of his room, smiling at him.

        Liked by 2 people

        1. I think the second option is PHENOMENAL. Another take on the ending – After the mother walks out, the boy smiles and his eyes turn the color of purple-green-blue galaxy. The camera zooms out and a glowing rock can be seen under his bed.

          Liked by 1 person

            1. I think that WILL be my next project (perhaps next year, since I’m working on last year’s project now). Thank you for your encouragement.

              As far as ideas are concerned, I noticed that the more I write, the more of them reveal themselves. Plus, it does help to have outside inspiration.

              Liked by 1 person

    1. The story ends here…
      It was meant to be a single part. However, I am now reminded of all those times where I read stories on other blogs and I wanted part 2, but never got it.
      I might have to do part 2. Not sure yet.

      Like

  3. I’d love that. 😊
    I haven’t done something like that before so I hope it’s okay if I ask some silly questions.
    How does a collaboration between two people work in this case? Does one person come up with ideas while the other writes? Does one person write the first half while the other completes the story? Or do they both write the story, then compare and merge both stories?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. There are no silly questions.
      Collaborations aren’t strictly defined. My idea was for us to each write a part, i.e. one person writes half, and the other writes the other half.
      I will write an email to you via the Contact page on your site sometime later today when I have a moment.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you for pointing it out.
      It was a last minute decision. I wanted the narration to be visibly separate from “real time” conversation with the priest. That was the best way that I could do it. Do you think it worked? Or should I have done it differently?

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Yeah, I really like M. Night Shamalayn movies and stories. He has a way of really capturing true human emotions and reasoning. That’s how I felt reading your story.

        You not only capture the pending horror, but also your ability to really dig deep into the emotions and reasoning of your characters.

        You are an incredible writer Goldie.

        Liked by 1 person

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