May 03

The Graveyard & the Gardener (Part 1)

    Each spring, the tombstones of Ettenmoor Manor crown themselves in colors older than kings. Stern stone figures trail trains of creeping phlox, ancient etchings are smothered in thick vines. Blood red poppies reach through cobbled stone and soft petals bloom outwards in downy ripples, circling and circling as the air is filled with a sickly sweet perfume.
    If you walk amongst these tombstones in springtime, you will forget the damp grey that fills graveyards in autumn, or the aching chill that sweeps through them in the dead of winter. You will linger, heady with perfume. You will wonder when it was that you came here last, and why it was that you thought to leave.
    Eventually, you will decide to stay.
    That is, in all likelihood, the reason for the chains that are wrapped around the manor’s sharply ornamented gates. The canine barbs and imposing shadow of a monstrous house fallen into disrepair are not enough to keep the sweet scent of flowers and honey from drifting between the bars of that vast gate. Intoxicating aromas of roasting meat and tobacco leaves, fresh bead and aged wine. It takes wanderers in, and too few of them seem to mind the gate.
    But the manor was not always so empty. Once, the Ettenmoor family hosted wealthy guests in these halls, drinking and feasting in the finest silks and furs. Once, these cobblestone paths brought in merchants boasting lavish wares from places as far as Verda and Untaman, and musicians of the highest caliber.
    Once, there was a gardener with a rough voice and an uneven gait.
    His name, the graveyard whispers, was Elias Wit.

About the Author: QueenofDawn
"I write because I don't know what I think until I read what I say." -Flannery O'Connor