Every Monday Dottie over at Tink’s Place posts a picture and then on Friday (Flash Fiction Friday) we post a story to go along with the picture. The story has to be about 350 words, give or take.
(pic has been removed: lady and swan)
A river song
Kitsaine’s mother was always sad and cried. Once she had asked why and her mother had only looked longingly at the river and said nothing. When she grew older she asked her relatives but they told her that her mother surely only missed her people. It was said that one day her father just came home with her, a beautiful young woman with skin so white, with golden hair, dressed only in her father’s cloak. Her mother was loyal and hardworking, but loving? Towards her only child yes, but towards the man she married? No, she never even looked him in the eye. When Kitsaine was even older she heard her mother beg her father to let her go home and the next thing she heard was a faint scream as he hit her.
When Kitsaine turned 15 her father started to look for suitors, he did not have to look long as she was fair to look at. But to be some simple farmer’s wife? To toil away and break your back and give birth to 10 children? But that was not to be her fate as the Lord’s youngest son came to ask for her hand. This was unheard of, but he was only a 7th son, and the Lord was poor as dirt. No better than a poor farmer her father used to tell her. But with her beauty maybe the coming generation would do better and it was decided. And so she was married and forgot about her mother’s troubles, until that day she walked by the river and heard the seabirds lament their sorrow. For a moment she thought she was going insane, her body was already bruised and broken as her new husband was no catch so who would blame her if her mind went too? A week later she walked by the same path and heard the birds tell her to find her mother’s skin and then she knew. She told the servant with her that she was going to her parents and the servant followed. There she went straight to her father and asked him the truth. A truth in a lie, she told him that a magician had come by and told her husband how much a skin was worth. Her father had money signs in his eyes and went to catch the skin at once. Kitsaine just smiled and told him that she would get him the money soon. Then when he was walking out she took the big copper pan and hit him over the head. By now the servant was screaming but Kitsaine just gave her a look at went to get her mother. Her mother who cried from joy when she saw her beloved skin. The skin she wore as the bird she was. The skin she had taken off to play in the water as a woman. The skin Kitsaine’s father had stolen and by doing that bound the poor river girl to him.
Kitsaine stood by the river with her mother by her side. The bird looked up and she thought she saw a smile. Then she took off her dress and waded in. She was scared and the water was cold but soon two birds flew away along the riverbed.
Honestly what kind of bird is that? 😉 Anyway I was inspired by old tales again