The Blessed Mother
A lone woman entered a small clove and placed a white candle on the top of a small altar. A match was lit, and the flame rose, which caused the light to cast shadows around a statue of a woman. Parts of the darkness made the figure appeared as a skeleton. The woman covered her head and placed a seal on the bottom of the statue’s feet. It moved, and the hands held out a small dagger that was clutched by the stone fingers.
“Blessed mother, hear the prayers of your child.” The woman bowed her head. “I, your servant am hurt, and I ask for guidance.”
A finger moved, and one of the eyes opened. The woman did not look at the statue and continued to pray.
“The girl who came to us wants revenge. However, I told her there are other ways, but she would not listen.” Another finger moved and the other eye opened.
A third finger moved, and the statue came to life. Its head moved slowly. “My faithful servant, if she wants to do it, let her be.”
“But mother,” the woman looked at the statue, whose face had become flesh. “She is only a child, and the consequences will be dire.”
Four fingers were lifted from the dagger and only six left. “If you care for this child, why did you not bring her here?”
The woman lowered her hood and showed her bleeding head. “I am the one that caused the trouble and fled from her.”
The statue’s hair moved in the breeze, and her hand moved to the side as the other held the dagger. She lifted her hand towards the woman’s bleeding head and placed her hand on it. The blood stopped, and some of it moved on the statue’s hand. It slowly rose to the eyes and went inside. The figure closed her eyes and inhaled deeply as four stone fingers held the dagger.
“What did you do?” The statue asked.
“I killed her suitor.” The woman bowed her head to the floor. “I learned that he told her such horrible lies about you.”
The statue smiled and extended its hand to the woman. She grabbed and was pulled closer to the figure. Its hand wrapped around the woman’s head and placed it on top of her chest. A faint heartbeat was heard and comforted the woman.
“Mother, what should I do?” A tear fell on the statue’s cloth.
“I will deal with her.” There were still four fingers left, and a smiled came over the statue’s face. “Time is of the essence. Let her come to me.”
The statue caressed the head of the woman then tugged her hair. “I will use you.”
The light went out, and the dagger was placed on the altar. The woman walked out of the clove and went up the stairs. As she headed back inside a building, a young girl called out to her.
“Samara. Is that you?”
The woman slowly moved her head, and the young girl saw one of the eyes of the woman. A smile came over the woman, and she nodded.
“How dare you?” The girl ran towards her with a knife in her hand. “I will kill you for what you have done to my love.”
As the girl lashed out at the woman, a gust of wind blew at the young girl which she covered herself. The woman quickly grabbed her by the hand and pulled the knife.
“Child, why have you gone from my path?”
“What?” The girl looked at her and noticed that the woman’s face was different. It looked like their blessed mother. “Wait, you are not Samara. Who…who are you?”
The woman grabbed the other hand and pulled the girl closer to her. “I am your mother, and your body belongs to me.”
A dark smoke came from behind and dragged the young girl back to the small clove. The woman stood in the dark hallway and opened her eyes to see that she was holding the knife. She dropped it and looked around her. Surprised to see that she was in the hall, she ran back to the statue. But before entering, the woman grabbed another candle and went inside. As she placed the white candle on the altar, the woman noticed the sculpture was different, the face was younger. Lighting a match, the woman recognized that it was the young girl. She gasped and held her hand over her mouth.
“Blessed mother, what have you done?”
“She took my place.” A voice spoke behind the statue. A face appeared behind it who was the blessed mother in the flesh. “Each night I will be roaming the lands in search for a new life.”
“I don’t understand.” The woman looked at the statue. “How did you do this and why now?”
A grin appeared on the mother. “I was always able to do this, but the last keeper failed to bring a new follower.”
“What?” The mother placed her hand over the woman’s mouth.
“Hush now, your words have no meaning. We must search for the next victim. Another young girl with foolish dreams.”
The mother placed a hand on the woman’s head, and something came over her and felt young and strong. “Samara, serve me faithfully, and I will give you the world.”
She nodded, and the mother hugged her and vanished. Samara gasped and breathed heavily as her eyes moved around the dark cove.
A few days had passed, and Samara was at a train station. Mother spoke to her about a girl standing alone by the platform. Samara looked at the girl, who was reading a book. She walked to the bench and sat next to her. The girl did not look away from what she was reading. Samara cleared her throat and asked the girl a question.
“I am so sorry to disturb you.” Samara smiled. “But I’m lost. I am looking for this place.”
The girl lowered her headphones and looked at the map which Samara held to her.
“Um…that will be two stops from here.”
“Oh really? That is fortunate.”
The girl nodded and was about to put on her headphones when Samara asked her a personal question. “That man who hurts you, why are you still there?”
“What?” The girl’s eyes widen. “Who the hell are you?”
“A friend who wants to help you. You see, I seek out girls like you who are lost and are not able to find help.”
“Th…thanks. But I don’t need your help.”
“Samara,” the mother whispered in her head. “give her a ring, then leave.”
“Very well,” she stood and held the ring to her. “But if you ever need someone call me.”
The girl looked at it and hastily grabbed it. Just then the train came, and the girl went inside and looked at Samara who waved to her. Once the train left, Samara went up the stairway.
“Why did you tell me to let her go?” Samara asked.
“The child will come to us.” Mother laughed. “When someone like her is hurt, they seek out a mother, and I will be there with open arms to embrace her.”
* * *
The young girl walked alone on a dark street while listening to her music. Her eyes moved to the right and left to see if anyone was hiding behind the corners. The sounds of her shoes echoed, and she would have heard the other set of footsteps coming from behind her as it came closer. With a few steps, the girl stopped by a building and searched for her keys. Someone tapped her shoulder, and she gasped and turned around.
“Sorry to scare you.” A young man said.
“What do you want?” she grabbed something in her bag.
“I was looking for this address, but I think my girlfriend told me the wrong number.”
The girl’s eyes studied the man. His clothing looked expensive and new as if he just bought it. “Call her.”
“What?” He looked at her.
“Your girlfriend, call her.”
The man nodded and pulled out his phone, he dialed a number and set the speaker so she would hear the voice. As the phone was answered, a woman’s voice was heard, and the man asked for the address. As she said it, the young girl nodded and tapped the man on the shoulder. He saw that she was pointing to the building on the other side of the street. He smiled at her and walked away. The girl shook her head and entered the building. She walked up the stairs and entered the apartment.
“I’m home.” She called out.
“It's about time.” A man shouted from the living room. “Did you bring what I needed?”
“Yes.” She answered and walked to where the man was seated. She pulled out a brown paper bag and held it to him. “Here it is.”
The man grabbed it and popped opened the top and began to drink. The girl made a disgusted face and left to her room. She hanged her bag on the back of the door and tossed herself on the bed. Staring at the ceiling, a tear appeared from her right eye. She wiped it and sat up.
“I hate this place.” She walked to the window and looked at the dark street. She rubbed her finger on the ring that Samara gave to her. “If only there were a way to get out of this place.”
At that moment, someone knocked on her door. She said to leave her alone, but it was not her father.
“I came to take you.” A woman’s voice was heard behind the door.
“What?” The girl looked at the door then grabbed a bat. “How did you get inside?”
“That is not important. I came here to help you.”
The girl slowly walked to the door and grasped the knob but held it for a while.
“Don’t be afraid. I know that you are in a lot of pain and I can help you.”
Slowly turning the knob, the door opened, and there stood Samara who looked different. There was something odd about her, and the girl was not sure why. As Samara entered the room, all the lights went out, and only the glow from outside illuminated a portion of Samara’s face. The girl became freighted, but Samara placed both of her hands on the girl’s shoulders.
She leaned closer and whispered. “You will be my new follower.”
At that moment, Samara gasped and fell to the floor. The lights returned, and the man came walking asking what happened. To his horror, the body of Samara was in the middle of the room, and the girl was gone.