The night was dark and stormy. Snug in bed, I listened to the wind howling. It rattled and shook the windows. Hail pelted down on the tin roof, drumming its beat in synchrony with the wind. The flicker of the candle cast moving shadows on the walls. My eyes followed the shapes, creating creatures of fantasy and fable out of them. It was a favourite bedtime game I often indulged in. Slowly, my eyelids drooped. Closed. I fell into a deep, deep sleep.
Somewhere, in the dim distance beyond the mist and the fog, I heard a soft voice calling. Where are you? Where are you? Where are you? in monotonous repetition. Whoever it was, I knew they were calling me. With faltering footsteps I slowly walked towards the shapeless sound. It continued to beckon me, yet the distance never seemed to close between us. I stopped to listen again. Silence. My heart beat hard and fast in my chest, pounding in my ears. My breath, short and rapid, created whisps of steam in the cold night air. The silence was deafening. I yearned to hear the voice. I yearned to know from whence and from whom it emanated.
Hesitantly, I moved forward, one step at a time, listening intently. There! A palpable change in the air. A sigh, deep as the soul of the earth beneath my feet. The mist slowly softened, until I could see shadows of shapes in the not too far distance. Swaying gently, beckoning to me – Come! Come hither. Anticipation and excitement filled me as I eagerly stepped forward, more quickly now. At last! I was home. The warmth and the comfort covered me in softly falling cascades of golden light, showering from somewhere above me.
I opened my eyes. Daylight was streaming in through my window from a cloudless blue sky.
© Raili Tanska