Friday, March 6, 2015

Excerpt: Songs of Sirens or Something Else?

"She heard the song the first night, a beautiful haunting song that came from somewhere magical, where fairytales are real and wishes made with love come true.

Granny had given Anya her own bedroom and was sleeping in the parlor.

“You will be happy in this room, for I know how you love it so. It faces the lake and you love looking at it!”

Anya did love the room with its cozy bed and the beautiful French doors that opened onto the graceful balcony.

Nanny tucked Anya in. “Sleep well and have the most wonderful dreams, dreams of love and goodness.”

Anya promised, not even saying, “If I can,” but swearing she would.

Before it was time to go to sleep Granny read Anya the most wondrous fairytale, all about songs of magic and fantasy and beauty.

Anya was nearly dozing by the time it was finished so Granny tucked her in. “Sleep well my granddaughter, sleep well and dream of love.”

Sometime during the night, between one dream and another it seemed Anya dreamt she heard the most wonderful music.

It was so beautiful, she wanted to step outside so she could trace where it was coming from. But she couldn’t though she tried for she was much too sleepy. And although she sat up, she soon sank back into the soft eiderdown only to fall deeply asleep again.

When she woke in the morning, still thinking it was all a dream she told her Granny.

 “Did it sound like angels in heaven, child?”

“Yes, “ Anya said. “It was the song of angels I heard. And I so wished to see them too. But I dreamed I was too tired and although I tried to get up, I fell asleep again! It was a dream wasn’t it? It couldn’t have been real could it have?”

“You would like it to be real, my child?”

“Yes, I would as real as love can be.”

Granny sighed. “I did read you a fairytale probably that was the cause of it all.”

Anya thought that might be so. “Yes perhaps, ” she sighed. “Do read it again for I would very much like to dream it all again.”

And so Granny did. She read the same lovely story about maidens who danced by a lake – maidens who were really water nymphs and whose sole purpose in life was to sing songs for little girls who liked to dream of magic.

Anya grew sleepy as she listened. And when the clock struck nine she had to be carried to her bed.

“Good night my child, everything will be alright. You will see my precious one. You will see more magic than you can imagine!”

"Granny kissed Anya’s forehead and quietly slipped out of the room and as strange as it seemed, the singing began almost immediately.

This was no dream Anya soon realized. As a matter of fact, it seemed more distinct—for now she clearly heard the sweetly sad refrain about loss and love—about parting and unrelieved sadness and heartache. It was so sad in fact that Anya wept.

“I will see these maids. I will!” she shouted as she hurried toward the French doors.

There happened to be a pearly moon that shone brightly and lit the lake and the land enough for Anya to see three maids dancing. But not only dancing for they were singing too. And as Anya opened the door, she heard the music so clearly and spied the fiddler there who accompanied them.

How beautifully he played and how graceful they were, twirling about—singing and dancing.

Anya stepped closer to the balcony wall and as she did, she suddenly realized they were all watching her.

“I only wish to listen!”

She heard them giggle when she said that. And she giggled too but that was when she saw them begin to slowly drift upward toward her!

Up, they went like the slow rolling mist that lifted off of the lake at dawn.

Anya gasped. For as much as she liked them, she didn’t want them to come to her. They were frightening her a bit now. For the closer they came, the louder they sang and the song they sang sounded odd and scary almost and they looked different too with their arms outstretched as though they were reaching for her!

But what was worse was they were calling her name: “Anya! Anya!”

How did they know her name? How had that happened?

She began to cry and back away. “No! No go away!”

But they didn’t. They kept on coming, slowly—but steadily.

There was only one thing to do. Anya quickly closed the doors and locked them.

They were on the balcony by then, having drifted down so very gracefully, their bare feet gliding just above the smooth brick floor.

Anya was transfixed and couldn’t move for she wanted to see what they looked like. But a cloud passed over the moon then so that she could only see them in shadow.

“Anya, let us in… let us sing to you…hear our song…!”

“No please! Please!”

Suddenly the bedroom door opened and Granny appeared. She rushed to the doors. “Free the latch and you free your spirit!”

(END of excerpt)

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