Fairies : Mystica and Merlin
Chapter 7 : Mystica Took Flight
After she had cared for Mystica as much as she could. After she had done all that she could for her, Eyela ordered an extra bed to be set up in Mystica’s room. It was there that Eyela spent the night.
But Eyela did not sleep well that night at all. Her sleep was filled with nightmares and fears. She dreamed of Mystica’s staff. Left upon the ground. She dreamed of Mystica, hurt, and bleeding. All alone. In the dark. In a forest. She dreamed once more of the dragon Merlin. With his razor sharp claws and sword like teeth. Lashing out as dragons can. In anger and in rage. She dreamed of being all alone. In the middle of the night. Hours before the dawn. Not knowing where she was. Not knowing if she would be alive the next day.
Eyela tossed and turned that night. Waking before the sun rose. With the sky still black, and filled with black clouds. Outside, a cold rain fell. Eyela couldn’t help but know that this was all because of the white magic. That the white magic was reacting to Mystica. That it was reflecting the pain that Mystica felt. That it understood how hurt Mystica was.
Eyela stood beside the bed where Mystica slept. She could tell that Mystica was having nightmares of her own. She couldn’t help but see the way that Mystica’s eyes moved in her sleep. The way that Mystica sometimes moved about. The way that sometimes, Mystica almost cried. But Mystica did not wake. She continued to sleep.
Eyela used her magic once again, to help Mystica recover physically from the ordeal that she’d put herself through as she fought to save Ivy’s life. Even though Eyela had known that such a thing could not be done. She’d also known that Mystica had to try. Eyela knew that she would have tried, just like Mystica had tried. If it had been her own mother that had been injured in that way. She understood all too well what Mystica had done. And how she’d hurt herself.
Mystica stayed asleep for two solid days. Eyela had used her magic to provide her body with the things it needed. And she’d waited. Sleeping in the same room. Eating in the same room. Staying by Mystica’s side the entire time. And when Mystica finally woke, Eyela was right there.
After she was awake, Mystica slowly stirred. At first, just sitting up in the bed. She weakly smiled at Eyela. And then she cried. Eyela held her, like a mother holds a daughter. And she let Mystica cry. For as long as she wished. And once Mystica’s tears had dried, Eyela continued to hold her. Until Mystica finally let Eyela go.
“If you should need anything. Anything at all. Just ask. I will find a way to help you.” Eyela gently wiped the tears from Mystica’s face.
“I wish to be there. To light the fire that will return my mother’s body to the world that gave it birth.” Mystica looked at Eyela. “Please. Let me say good-bye to her.”
Eyela slowly nodded her head. “Of course, my friend. I would not dream of taking that privilege from you.”
That night. When the moon was full in the sky. The fairies of the kingdom gathered in the town square. In the center of he square was a carefully crafted funeral pyre. Waiting to be set. Several hundred fairies had gathered around. To see Ivy’s body returned to the world that had birthed it. Every head was bowed.
Stephan had entered first, walking into the square from the road that lead to the castle. He came in alone. He was the captain of the guard. He wore that captain’s uniform. All in black. Trimmed in gold. With a silver sword in it’s silver sheath, hanging from his belt. With gold chains hanging from his shoulders. He wore no head covering of any kind.
After he had entered, he walked to the funeral pyre. Then he turned to face the people that had gathered. And he spoke.
“We are gathered here tonight to return our dear friend Ivy, honored mother of the princess Mystica, to the world from whence she came. We know that her spirit has passed beyond the veil, and has left our realm. While we will miss her presence here, with us. We know that her life continues on.”
Stephan then turned to face the pyre, and he spoke the words he’d come to speak. “I have come tonight, to say good-bye to you, Ivy. It was my privilege to have protected you in the days leading to Mystica’s birth. It was my honor to have watched you grow these past 18 years. To watch you become the beautiful spirit that you became. It was life’s gift to me to see you touch the hearts of so many people in this kingdom.”
Then he bowed his head. “It was my greatest failure that the castle guard, of which I am in charge, failed to prevent the atrocity that took you from us. And it was my greatest mistake that I never told you that I loved you while you were here, with us. With me.”
With his head bowed, Stephan knelt down. And made a full, formal bow to Ivy’s body as it rested there upon the pyre. And with no shame at all, the whole crowd noticed the tears that fell from the eyes of the captain of the guard. After a few moments, Stephan slowly stood, then turned, and then walked to the side of the pyre. To stand just inside the circle that the crowd had made.
Eyela came in next. And she walked directly to the pyre, stopping in the same place Stephan had stopped. Then Eyela spoke. “Ivy, mother of the princess Mystica. Please know that our lives are all less now that you have passed beyond the veil.” Then Eyela looked toward Ivy’s body as it rested on the pyre. “And know, my dear friend. That I will miss you. And never forget you. Or the friend that you have been to me. And that when the day comes that I shall pass beyond the veil, I will see you there. And I will wish once more to be your friend.”
With that, Eyela turned, and walked to stand beside Stephan. The two of them side-by-side.
Last to enter was Mystica. She entered with her staff in hand. In a grey corset. And a long skirt made of four separate fabric panels, that were slit almost to her waist. As she walked her legs were visible. Her eyes of brilliant blue shone brightly that night. And she walked to stand beside the pyre that her mother’s remains had been placed upon.
“Mother. My mother. I tried, Mother. Oh, how I tried. But there was nothing I could do to help you in your final hours.” Mystica looked upon her mother’s body. Her eyes shedding tears. “And now, because I failed, you are gone. And I miss you, mother. Terribly.” Mystica then turned, and looked at Eyela. “I have one thing I must ask, Eyela. Please try to understand. I will be leaving the kingdom tonight. I have to go find myself. I have to learn if I can continue on. I have to grieve for my mother for a time. And learn who I am, now that she is gone.”
Eyela never let her ask the question that was coming next. “I give you my word, Mystica. No one will follow you. And your wish to leave, and have the time to find yourself, is granted.”
Mystica spoke very quietly. “Thank you.” Then she turned to face the pyre. And raised her staff. “May the flames of white magic cleanse the evil that was done to you, my mother. And may the fire that burns return your body to the world that gave it to you.” White light lanced from the crystal on Mystica’s staff, and struck the base of the pyre. The pyre ignited. And as it burned, it consumed the wood that it was made of. And it consumed the body of Ivy.
While it burned, Mystica bowed her head, and whispered, “I miss you, Mother. For I have never been alone. And now I am.” Everyone watched as the fire burned. No one left. No one walked away. The fire burned everything. Turning the wood, and Ivy’s body both to ash that rested on the ground. Through it all, Mystica stood there, right next to the fire, watching. Tears falling from her eyes.
When the last flame was gone. And the last glow of the last ember faded away. Still no one moved. Everyone simply watched. And Mystica wiped the tears from her eyes. Then held her staff up. And spread her wings.
And Mystica flew. Her wings lifting her into the sky. As she left the kingdom that night. No words were ever spoken. For all knew that Mystica’s heart was broken, and that it ached within her chest. All knew that her soul cried tears of pain. Every eye in the kingdom that night watched as Mystica flew through the sky. And all wished that her aching heart would someday be soothed. And that the tears her soul cried would someday dry.
All hoped that Mystica would find her own way in this life. That she would find herself.