Greetings my dears and welcome once again to Wednesday Briefs. Wednesday Briefs are a group of authors that write fiction based on a weekly prompt. This week I chose the following picture prompt as inspiration:
My initial intention was for this to be much longer, but I’ve been in bed with a cold and a fever since Sunday. Therefore, if the following flash doesn't make too much sense, please forgive me. I promise I'll try to solve it next week. *smile*
Light of Time
Taking as much of a deep breath as the tight stays of her corset would allow, Bethany straightened her spine and shoved her hands into the pockets of her wide skirt. Her fingers brushed the note that had brought her here. She wasn’t sure why she still carried it around for she’d read it so many times she knew the words by heart.
A soft wind blew a few stray curls over her eyes, but she didn’t bother to push them away. The time had almost come. Nerves fluttered deep in her belly and her heart seemed to race faster than the tick-tack of the pocket watch she carried nestled between her breasts.
The church bells began to ring, announcing the late hour and the end of the last mass of the day. She stood to a side as the faithful followers of the Nuold religion walked out the old grey cathedral chatting quietly. Was he among them?
A loud clanging noise caused her to break her composure for an instant but with practiced nonchalance, she observed her surroundings, the corner of her lips lifting as she caught sight of the source: the lamp lighter was about. It was almost time.
She watched the old man lift his heavy staircase and drag it to another lamppost. Clang. He rested his ladder against the bar at the top of the lamp and carefully climbed the wobbly structure, balancing his lamplighter pole. Upon reaching the top, the man tipped the lever and touched the gas. A soft glow grew into a warm ball of fire that illuminated the Church’s paved walkway with an eerie glow that reminded Bethany of her Grandfather studio. Her heart constricted with the memory of the old man that had brought her up with fantastical stories of a different world.
“There was once a world, Beth, a world in which light wasn’t this tame glow, but a fire ball that illuminated entire cities as if it were day, almost as if the sun had come to walk among us.”
Bethany fisted the paper in her pocket, recalling the last words of the encrypted message. In the place where old and new meet when the shadows fall and the sun walks among us.
Pulling her hands from her pocket, Bethany finally pulled out her watch to glance at the time. What if she’d been wrong and this wasn’t the place at all? She glanced about, watching as the first shadows of dusk mingled with the light from the lampposts and the final rays of the sun, which spilled from the sky and across the Church’s tainted glass, creating a bright glow, different from anything in the city.
“As id the sun walks among us.”
Bethany turned around. Goosebumps covered her arms and her heart sped up as a man emerged from the shadows. Raising her chin defiantly, she braced herself for what was to come.
“General Hodgins, I presume?”
To be continued…
And now go check out the rest of this week Briefers!