by R. M. Guitar
Alonia marries her true love. A stranger comes along, ruining everything.
| Once there was a young maiden named Alonia. She grew up on a little farm near the edge of town. Her mother and father were always hard on her and made her look her best no matter what. That meant keeping up with the latest fashions.
She had to brush her long, golden hair to perfection every day. Her teeth were naturally straight, one of the most rarest things to occur. Her dresses were always fit to bring out her curves. She had the closest hour glass figure than anyone in her town. She tried to rebel against them and be like the boys; climbing trees, hunting small animals, ect, which was not okay in her time. It wasn't lady like.
One stormy night, while she lay in bed, she couldn't help but to wish her parents ill. She hated doing everything they told her to do when they told her to do it without the right to fight or argue. Then she remembered that wishing ill will towards the ones you love- anyone really- would bring you bad fortune. She did not care, however. She wanted them to feel her frustration and anxiety. She wanted them to understand her pain of being locked away when she needed room to breathe.
The next morning she awoke with a start. Something wasn't right. She felt it in her gut as her stomach turned. Feeling the acid rise up, she swallowed past it and climbed out of her queen sized bed.
Softly tip-toeing out of her room, she called out softly to her parents, “Mother? F- Father?” Alonia was frightened.
"Go back into your room." her father gently urged her back to where she came, speaking quietly as if he, himself were afraid of something. "Lock the door and stay there until I come get you." He pressed a key into her palm before disappearing down the hall.
Alonia could see the fear in her father's eyes. She ran back into her room, locking it with the key. She went to her bed and hid under the covers. "What is happening?" she wondered out loud.
Unknown to her, there was a sinister looking man who had come for her. A man the town had feared time and time again. Some going as far to claim him to be a demon. Each person saw something different when looking at him. He wanted Alonia. Her parents continued to refuse him.
"I will have her sooner or later. She will bear me a son." The man wore a smirk as he said this, leaving the house.
Meanwhile at a farm just across town, two brothers were arguing.
"You can't leave me here alone. Not with a father like him." The younger one, Cordan, yelled.
"I can and I will, little brother. You don't want to come? They can give you all that you could ask for." He raised his eye brow, standing against the huge oak tree they used to play in as young lads.
"No. I don't trust Them and neither should you. What will happen to you if They are as bad as people have said?" He argued, trying to reason with his older brother.
"Then I suppose I will adjust to my surroundings. I cannot take it here. You could come, we wouldn't be missed."
"And leave the youngest to our father? I would rather die." Cordan said angrily. "And you should feel the same way."
"I did. I mean, I have protected you from his drunken rage all these years. I will see you again someday, little brother." With that, the oldest brother left, carrying only a small sack.
Over time, Cordan grew to be strong. He was the best farmer and lumberjack the town had. He focused on getting his youngest brother, Michael, out of his father's house.
Until one fateful night when Cordan returned home to see his father standing over Michael’s bloody corpse. Everything turned red. Cordan grabbed him by the throat before he could say anything in his defense, throwing him out. His father stumbled back and landed on an axe.
He never mourned for the man who raised him, only for his lost brother. To handle the pain, he continued with the farm and getting the trees he needed, eventually opening up his own business of lumber jacks.
Alonia and Cordan met in the market while she was looking at some flowers that were almost out of season. She wanted them so badly, but her mother and she came to town for dinner supplies for a party, so her mother would hear none of it. Alonia longed for those flowers though. They were beautiful in full bloom and they smelled so sweet.
She was so distracted by the flowers, she hadn't noticed the man she bumped into. She instantly curtseyed. "I am so sorry.” She looked up, the last of her sentence slowing down, "I should pay more attention..."
Cordan smiled awkwardly. "It's alright, miss. It's a crowded market."
"That it is, sir."
"Alonia! Come here," her mother had called to her angrily, “and quit lollygagging!”
She looked in the direction her mother called from. "Yes, mother."
"Alonia. That is a beautiful name." he bought one of the flowers she had been looking at. "I am Cordan. I do hope we can see each other again."
"As do I." she smiled and took the flower, going to her mother.
After meeting her, Cordan decided to find out all he could about her and her family. Even though she was from a higher class, he knew that he could win her parents favor with his business booming. He just had to beat all the others that wanted to court her as well.
He came to call on her often and eventually he had proposed to her. Despite her father's protests on her rejecting other more “suitable” men, she had chosen to marry him and not the others.
The wedding was beautiful, though it was a simple one. She convinced her mother and father to accept Cordan as their own son, reassuring them that he was just as good for her as any other. She didn’t mind that she would be a farmer’s wife and was very happy to see her parents there.
The church only held her, her dashing groom as well as her parents as Cordan had no family left. The bride was gorgeous in the dress she had made for her. It was a creamy color with a low neckline that was laced across the bosom and long sleeves that fanned out at the ends. It was clinging to her curves. Her hair was braided with white lilies lined in it. The ceremony was long and dull, but they didn’t mind so long as they would be together.
After the wedding was over, she gathered her things from her house to move into the decent sized farm house that was her husbands. She felt so happy that she couldn’t stop the tears from falling when she was carried over the threshold and set down in the living room.
It was the first night her and her husband would spend together. She prepared dinner and was waiting for him to come home from getting the wood they would need for the hearth. She was a beautiful maiden, the most beautiful of them all. She could've had anyone, but she chose to marry a lumberjack/farmer. She was deeply in love with him and didn't want anything more.
She smiled at the thought of many suitors coming to propose to her, but none of them could love her the way He had. Cordan. He was the only one who could show her love without lust.
She smiled, remembering the first time they had met when, out of nowhere, a knock came that pulled her out of her thoughts. They weren't expecting any company. Everyone knew that they would be busy. Plus, it was rude to interrupt a couple on their first night together.
The knock came again, more urgent this time, so Alonia had no choice but to answer the door. She opened it slowly. "Can I help you, sir?" She asked the strange man who stood at her door.
His hat covered his eyes. The only thing she could see clearly was his pale cheeks. His voice sounded rough and scratched, with a bit of a growl. "I have come to congratulate you."
"Thank you, sir, but 'tis very rude to interrupt the bride and grooms first night together."
" 'Tis so. I am sorry, ma'am, I will leave you with this bottle," the stranger said, putting a bottle of red wine down, "and be on my way." He tipped his hat and left her alone.
When Cordan walked in the door, Alonia hugged him tightly. She kissed him on the mouth then led him to the table where dinner had been waiting. Cordan smiled, blushing at the sound of his stomach growling.
Alonia laughed for a minute before a frown rested upon her face. “We had a visitor.” She said.
“Who?” Cordan asked, tilting his head ever so slightly.
“I do not know. He was covered from head to toe but his voice… It sounded hoarse and low. I had a strange feeling about him.”
“We’ll have to watch out for him then. Let’s eat, love. After, I have a surprise for you.”
Alonia smiled and nodded. She ate happily with him before he led her to the bedroom, where he would proceed to take her innocence. She was happy it was him. The man she loved the most.
The stranger stayed in the town for quite a while, making a name for himself. Everybody thought him to be trouble and some even were afraid of him. They had every right to be, for this man was a dangerous spirit. His eyes were dark and his lips seemed to be permanently stained with red. His skin was feverish and seemed to burn those who touched it. His smile never reached those black, cold eyes unless it was a twisted smile that must have held a sick, dark secret.
The news of Alonia bearing a child spread like wildfire. They became a very popular couple amongst the people in their town. She was, after all, once the daughter of a merchant and now the wife of a mere farmer who owned his own lumber jack company.
They were an interesting pair that always stayed together. She would take him on trips to the market with her, often times allowing him to pick out the food. His employees loved them so much they showered them with gifts.
When the stranger heard of the good news, he went to their house once again to congratulate them.
Alonia answered the door, she gasped a bit frightened. "Cordan!" she called, watching the man.
"What is it?" He asked, approaching the door. When he saw who stood before them, he froze, not out of fear, but out of recognition. "I heard you were in town." he said, forcing a smile. "What are you doing here?"
Alonia looked at her husband with bewilderment. How did he know this man? She shook her head slightly and left the room.
"I am here to give you my congratulations on your child. I came by on your wedding night, but I suppose you were not home. She is a lovely girl. What is her name?" He hid that devil’s smile he had.
"Alonia. She is quite lovely, but that is not why I love her. I love her because she is kind and cares for everyone. She always has a smile and never lets anything bring her down."
"That's quite a catch."
"Indeed." Cordan looked at him with knowing eyes and finally said in a somewhat cold tone, "Now tell me what you really want Arkus. I know you are here for something."
"Am I not allowed to visit my younger brother?"
"You stopped being my brother when you left to join those...things. What do They want now?"
"I can't say what they want, but I can tell you what I want. I want to show you how loving I can still be, little brother. So, I'll tell you a secret. There will come a day when she sits alone with her dying child. A man will come to comfort her. He will show her how she can cope with the loss of her precious boy and when she realizes what she has done, she will turn to her husband, desperate to fix things before they are truly broken and they will bear another son. This son will not be her husband's though. It will be the son of the man who had comforted her."
"What are you talking about?"
"Like I said, she is quite lovely." He tipped his hat and added, "Lovely creatures are easy to prey on." Then left without another word or a trace of his existence.
The town had forgotten about the man who looked like death itself.
Days passed by. Months passed by. Alonia's stomach grew and grew until she bore a son and named him Maxus.
Maxus was a healthy baby who grew to be a fine little boy. His hair was golden just as his mother’s but his eyes were his father’s green eyes. Those eyes also carried the same gold flecks that was seen when you looked hard enough. His skin was tan. He had the kindness of his mother and the strength of his father. Everyone who crossed his path loved him dearly. His teachers adored him. Even praised him for his good behavior.
“Father!” He ran into the house with muddy shoes, a look of distraught on his round face.
Cordan turned from the note he was writing, a look of concern crossed his face. “What is it?”
Maxus opened his hands, unfolding his shirt to reveal an injured dove. “I- I found this baby. He- or she- needs tending to. Help, please?”
Cordan got up from his chair, rounding the desk. He went over to his son to examine the bird. The little dove flapped its wings, trying to escape. It was panicking. Cordan scooped the bird up, seeing the broken wing, he took it over to his desk. It took a few minutes but Cordan managed to put a make- shift sling on the small creature.
“There. Take him to your mother and have her find something to feed it.” He smiled at his son.
The dove hopped around, trying to find a landing. Maxus picked it up. He carried it to the room where his mother sat with one of her friends.
“Mom! We need food for the bird!” he held it out.
The woman sitting with her jumps up. “What is that?” She yells.
“A dove that needs food.” Maxus replied.
Alonia stood up. “We’ll find something. Mother, wait here.” She sighed, leading Maxus into the kitchen.
The dove became a member of the family while it’s wing healed. Maxus loved it so much. He named it Angel. They went almost everywhere together. Angel even waited for him by the door when he went out.
Then the time came to set Angel free. Maxus cried for his friend but the bird refused. Chirping every time they tried to get him to fly. Angel just circled around and landed on Maxus’s shoulder. They made a home for it.
It stayed for a few weeks before finally flying off for good.
As the days passed by, Cordan could hear his brother's words ring in his ears more and more often. One day when she sits with her dying child a man will come...show her how to cope with the loss...she will turn to her husband, desperate to fix things before they are broken and they will bear a son. This son...will be the son of the man...
The words hung over him like a bee's nest over a tree. They would not leave him. This caused him to work harder and stay out later. He started working into the night, even.
Poor Maxus just wanted his dad home. It didn’t matter what it took. One cold, autumn night, he was desperate for his father to come home and followed him into the darkness. Alonia had to search and search for hours on end looking for her boy.
Then Maxus got sick. At first it was a small fever that cleared up quickly. Then, little by little, the fever got worse. It came back again and again.
Cordan got the news that his son lay sick and there was nothing they could do but pray for him. He knelt by his son’s bed and wept. "My dear boy, get well. I cannot bear to lose you. I’m so sorry I haven’t been home.”
Alonia took it the hardest. She wept often and would not eat. No form of comfort would work to settle her tears. She sat in front of the fire or lay next to her son, not caring that she too could catch the deadly fever. Cordan tried to talk to her, murmuring meaningless words. He tried holding her, loving her, showing her that it would be okay, but it was all in vain. Nothing could comfort her.
A part of her blamed Cordan for their son’s illness. As much as she wanted him to be there, she knew he would rather be taking care of the crops or his workers. She felt she was only important to Maxus.
Cordan began to work later again. He often stayed out well after midnight. He listened to his brother's words play over and over, weeping softly to himself. He would tell himself, "She will not turn herself to another man. She will not let another man love her, and if she did, she would confess, not try to hide it."
Little did he know that the man his brother spoke of visited his house almost every night whilst he was out. Watching her, waiting for the right moment to get her attention. Waiting.
"I do not wish to be comforted. I tell you to leave me, sir. You have no business here." she glared at this man.
He was quite handsome with eyes that could cut through ice. His hair was a perfect wave of sun. His skin seemed to be made of snow and his lips...they were forever the blush of a rose.
"I am just simply asking how you can be comforted. He is out there doing- who knows what? - And leaving you to yourself. You do not need to be alone at a time like this." the man leaned in, softening his voice. "Let me be the one to show you that this is not the end."
Alonia's breath caught in her throat. She managed to whisper, "No, you need to leave."
The man became impatient. "I know what you want, Alonia. You cannot hide your desires from me."
He quickly pushed her into the living room, pinning her to the floor. He forced her legs open as he pulled down her under garments.
“If he won’t show you, I will.”
Alonia found that he was right when the weight of his body caused some sort of wetness between her thighs. Though she screamed no, her body refused to fight the invading presence. It seemed to crave the attention this man- no- this beast was giving her. It had betrayed her heart, causing her to betray the only love of her life against her will and when the man finished he left her there, lying on the floor, weeping for many reasons. Weeping for joy for having been understood; weeping for sorrow for she had been raped; weeping for her son who lay dying in his room. Alonia felt her heart shattering slowly into a million different pieces. She couldn’t breathe anymore.
When Cordan had come in, Alonia was sitting by the fire as she often did. He walked to her and hugged her from behind, taking her in his arms and putting her in his lap. He rocked her back and forth, singing softly to her:
Time goes faster than we know,
Where will you go?
When I am gone and leave you here,
Where will you go, my dear?
Softly say, "I love you".
What will you do?
When I am dead and gone my love,
Where will you go, sweet dove.
Alonia turned and kissed him like she used to. It took Cordan by surprise, but he kissed her back. That night, they had done what they haven't for a long time. They made love and slept for the night and into the morning. When Cordan awoke, he went to check on his son. Maxus was cold to the touch and his lips were blue. Cordan broke down in tears, screaming in agony. It felt like a thousand knives had come and stabbed him ever so slightly.
Alonia came rushing in and fell to her knees, joining her husband's cries. No amount of pain can compare to the loss of a child, but as time passes, the wounds turn into scars.
Alonia found out three months later that she was pregnant again. She bore another son and named him Daynus, never knowing if it was the evil man who stole everything or her husband's.