Rated: E · Short Story · Folklore · #1991547
A story of Halloween/Day of the Dead, past and present lives collide together briefly.
|November Second. El Dia de los Muertos, the day of the dead. Tonight is my only chance Amelia thinks, walking down the path to the Somme River.|
Bringing with her all the things needed for her summoning attempt. The Red Baron aka Manfred Von Richthofen the only thing that's been pulling and pushing at her, an obsessive compulsive thought for the past year now. She's been fascinated with his life as a world war one legend since she was a little girl, and tonight, the chance to meet him and connect past and present, the living and the dead...
Finally coming into the field on the hill near Bray-Corbie road, just north of the village of Vaux-sur-Somme. The place where he made his final landing ninety-two years ago. Dropping to her knees a little left of center in the field, opening her bag of goods, Amelia lays some old correspondence between him and her great-aunt Evelyn on the ground in front of her. Upon which she places a white sugar skull with his name, lighting the seven red candles and sprinkling some dirt from his original grave, Amelia begins to pray in earnest, to meet the man who captured the world's attention and her great-aunts heart. Minutes turn to what seems to be eternity, and when she finally dares to look up because all but two of the candles have flickered out unexpectedly. Its done with her nerves on edge and heart beating fast the faint tinge of hope rising in her throat.
It's worked. she thinks with some cautious excitement and releases the breath she's been holding. There's a man standing before her, in regulation german world war one uniform. No, not just a man, but one man, Manfred von Richthofen. Also known as the Red Baron. Amelia doesn't know what to do, for tense minutes blue-green eyes meet crystal blue eyes. He wonders why this girl is here and from where. She looks strange to him, tall and lean and pale almost sickly so. With long blonde and pink and brunette striped hair that curls slightly at the ends that reminds him of ice-cream.
Make-up covers her arms, neck and face, in vibrant hues of pinks, greens, and gray. They form the shape of flowers around the eyes with another flower surrounded by swirls and dots on chin and cheeks and arms. There's also a crude cross and halo front and center on her forehead while u shapes and stitches line her mouth. She seems so out of place. He wonders why she called him here, how it came to be that he's no longer in the after life.
"Evelyn?" He questions, his voice distant and tinged with something that she can't quite identify. "No. Not Evelyn. Just a...distant relative of hers." He studies the girl beside him with a more critical eye as silence stretches further between them. She's not as beautiful as Evelyn he muses as she lays on the ground starring at the stars above but he can see the resemblance. Death has changed him for the better he thinks and so he'll humour her, it's better than the grave. And so he does they laugh and they talk. Mostly him, answering question after question about his life and how death felt and everything between. She amuses him with her vibrancy and animation much like Evelyn once did.
And when the hours have finally come and passed and the sun is rising he can feel himself start to fade with one last salute and promise of next year and the year after that he fades away. Away with the other's returning to the other side after the veil has righted itself again. She wishes he could stay, but, then she muses what would she have to look forward to next year?
My October entry for the Rising Stars Shining Brighter Contest.
Authors Note: Here's the link for the original un-edited version