Friday, October 24, 2008
South of the River
Lucy knew she shouldn’t go south of the river. Harold had expressly forbidden it on numerous occasions but when you could see the glint of a lost treasure and the river ran as slow and lazy and a laden bumble bee, what harm was there?
She carried her trowel ahead of her like a dagger, in case she met any pirates, making her way down the mossy bank to the yellow glint she’d spotted from the north bank. Brambles snatched at her dress and alder seed snagged her hair as she scrambled to the water’s edge and found… an old wrapper from a chocolate bar, and not even one she liked.
When the claws grasped her legs she cried out in fear, a moment before a scaled hand clamped over her face. She jabbed at it with her trowel and it let go with a shriek. Lucy flailed about with the trowel. “Cold iron,” she said, her eyes lit with fear and anger. “It burns like fire, doesn’t it?”
Only when she was safely back across the bridge did she collapse into a puddle of tears. She cried herself out. Better that than let her father know where she’d been.
Image by Jen Emery