She wore a mask so no one could see her beauty. She wanted to have people know her from the inside out. It was her one virtue she held onto. In fact she called herself Strength. It was a name that few did not recognize. The ritual of the Goddess and God joining together again was approaching. Strength had no time to waste. She needed to make it back to her homeland. However, she was lost.
Strength had traveled many lands on her adventures. In that time, she had never gotten lost. It was odd for her in this moment to feel as if she could not even take a step forward. She adjusted her mask and looked onward; the lion, which was with her, held steadfast as they approached a strange figure. The figure was almost transparent, but upon closer view was skeleton in nature. As he walked towards Strength and her majestic lion, he held in his arms a woman.
Strength held back as the figure approached.
“Hello, I don’t mean to scare you. My name is Death,” Death said as he put the woman on the ground.
Strength looked at the ground where the woman lay. She realized just how much of the desert she had crossed trying to find her way back home. Looking up at Death, she wondered how this figure had come across the same area she had. She was surprised yet relieved that there was someone else out in this vast terrain.
“How long have you been out here?” Strength asked.
Death looked around. He moved what little white hair he had left from his eyes. He then looked at the woman.
“Too long it seems. I have been on this quest to bring this woman back to her final resting place. I have traveled long and far. In all this time, I have not come across one person, until you.”
Strength stared at the woman who lay on the ground lifeless. Her black hair just peeked under the hat she was wearing, and her red dress was tattered from the dust.
“I am on my way home for the great ritual.” Strength reached down to pet her lion.
“The great ritual, ah, yes, does that not happen in a few days?” Death asked.
Strength nodded. “I should have been there by now. I have to prepare.”
Death looked into the huge desert. He shook his head. “Why are you not there?”
“I’m afraid I have gotten lost.”
“That is not good. I might be able to help.”
Strength looked up. “I would appreciate that.”
“Okay, fond lady, I have to go to Summerland first to allow this woman to have her final resting. It should not be far from here. I can help you after to find your place.”
They walked and walked. It seemed like it took millions of years before they reached what Death had labeled as Summerland. Strength suddenly stopped. Before her eyes were five beautiful fairies on a tree. Each one of the fairies was holding a branch; they swung from the tree with such grace. They noticed Death and Strength.
“What brings you here?” they said in unison.
Death placed the girl back down. “Thank you, my fairies, for your wisdom,” he said. “The woman here needs to go to Summerland for her final resting place. My traveling companion needs to be at the Great Ritual.”
The fairies spoke in unison. “We accept your place, Death. As for your companion, she needs to wait here. However, you follow us,”
Still holding the girl, Death followed the fairies through an invisible field. They all disappeared. Strength just looked on. She wondered what would happen if she tried to pass through the veil. Did she have the courage she thought she had? Strength made a choice; she was going to do it. She was going to go through the veil.
She started to walk into the veil. At first it seemed cloudy, and she could not make out what was ahead of her. However, beyond the cloudiness she saw beautiful trees with majestic horses and the vastest land she had ever laid eyes on. Her weight was nothing, and she floated past several apple trees which made her smile. The winds led her to a sacred circle just outside the biggest tree she could possibly imagine.
The tree was so large that Strength could not even believe it was real. She walked up to the tree where its hollow entrance waited for her to join. As she walked into the tree, she heard birds chirping. A sudden stop caused her to look and see the great Goddess waiting for her, her hand outreached ready for Strength to take. She took the Goddess’s hand and continued to walk with her up the tree. As they walked, Strength saw several people enjoying the fruits of their labor. They played and celebrated as if life had never ended but was reborn,
“My dear, you are in Summerland,” the Goddess said. “Your journey has been long and perhaps one you did not know you were seeking. However, you are here now. The Great Ritual you were seeking was of your own rebirth.”
Strength looked at her with love and trust; she followed her further up the tree where she came across Death.
“This is why we met too, little one. It was fate.” Death now took her hand leading her the rest of the way up the tree.
When she reached the top of the tree, the God awaited her, now joined by the Goddess. The Great Ritual was about to begin, and Strength was about to be reborn.
Ravenwonderingdragon has been a practicing Witch for several years. She is a published author, aspiring screenwriter, Certified Tarot Consultant, and avid Tarot deck collector. She does professional Tarot and Dream interpretation readings at her website: http://www.readingsbyravenwonderingdragon.com/. Ravenwonderingdragon lives with her family that includes some furry cats in the Southeastern U. S.