Tomorrow’s execution would be delayed no longer. All appeals had been exhausted; the wizard’s daughter refused to repent and the bishop had no choice but to make an example of her. To do anything less would only fuel the burgeoning unrest among the peasants.
This close to the harvest, the king and his advisors were determined that the corn would come in—this time. They couldn’t touch the wizard, of course, but magical decrees as old as the amber waves also prevented the wizard from stepping foot into the realm to save his only child.
Grateful for the free rein thus conferred, the king had had the wicked girl brought up on charges of unleashing weevils, just as the farmers were finishing the spring planting. A quick trial—held in secret—led to a swift guilty verdict and even quicker judgement. Death by stoning.
Dawn broke upon the fresh face of the wizard’s daughter. Resplendent in royal purple flowing garments, her strong, dignified carriage presented a stark contrast to the tired, slumping forms arrayed before her. She glared at each peasant, farmer and high court official. With the sun beaming off her silken gown, none of her would-be executioners could see her lips moving…
The wizard’s daughter bowed her head—declaring not reverence to, but independence from—the shackled mores of mortals. Her incantation, a mere rustle of breath escaping her lips, transformed the village carnivores into mindless zombies.
The throng turned its attention from her supposed execution to more primitive desires: their tasty-looking neighbors. The bishop, fattest, most well-fed among them, was first to fall. More violently than a winter sneeze, the villagers set upon the king’s highest representative of law and order in the land and reduced him to a shaved carcass of sinews and dripping bones.
While the backward town bid farewell to its senses, the wizard’s daughter slipped unnoticed through the the visceral carnage. Once free of the frenzied bustle, she wrapped her purple gown tightly about her slim frame and hiked eastward along the dusty road.
To mankind, the rising sun was simply the glue that bonded men to fields, seeds to land and horses to grass. To the wizard’s daughter, the fiery orb was a beacon pointing to home. It boiled away the last of her melancholy, purified her ichor, and set off sensations of rejoicing within her aura.
Her time in the mortal plane had been well spent. The weevils she had loosed on the peasants’ crops amplified her yearning and insatiable hunger for home, hearth and family. With sunbaked clarity, the wizard's daughter saw the shimmering portal that separated her from her beloved father.
When the portal sensed the fullness of her longing, it began to open. She embraced the welcoming glow of the magical village that rose one hundred leagues beyond the horizon. With a majestic sweep of her arms, the wizard's daughter flew off into the sunrise.
Copyright © 2020 by Mitchell Allen
Originally appeared on CreativeCopyChallenge #417 – #419.