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Tales of Orgonia: Chapter 4 - Beckon

Rowan’s ears embraced the words as a cherry blossom does the spring. With curling toes and hairs on end Rowan could hear his home calling to him, to rescue, to repair and to complete him once again.

‘Rowan-Rowan?’ a gust of words fleeted by in the key of G major.

The man slung his bag onto his back and ran like wild fire.

The sky was brighter this morning but the heavy fog reduced Rowan’s vision to just a mere one or two feet ahead of him, at most. He accepted that the staff would no longer happily carry as much of his load as it once had and decided his best chance was to burden more of the mass onto his legs and torso to distribute the weight more evenly.

Rowan traveled at speed for as long as his legs would carry him, barely resting as he chased the beloved sound of his wife’s promise.

Hours passed, days past and then nearly an entire week had passed until Rowan was almost clear of the Fens, all the while knowing that his wife could only be no more than a furlong or so ahead of him. He could see her waiting for him; lost; alone and scared, weeping on a high rock with her knees tucked under her chin and arms wrapped around her legs, her long hair reaching down to shield her from the world around her.

‘I’m coming my love’ Rowan called occasionally, to comfort both Ornella and his own aching body. The bones and muscles carrying Rowan’s passion burned and cramped as he refused to stop. The soles of his boots wore away and exposed his heels to the trenchant wooden path, slicing at his skin like papercuts.

On either side of the path pools of murky water grew deeper, darker and thick with vegetation, tall reeds swayed from side to side as creatures passed between them. Needlelike, leafless trees and scenes of abandoned boats flashed by Rowan as he ran.

As night fell his pace would slow but something deep in his heart forbade him from stopping, even for a second. Further he ventured away from the Fallows and deeper into the Fens he advanced and with that, more life of every disparity. Serpents of the dark would swoop down to attack his exhausting limbs and yet Rowan wouldn’t even break his gaze of the way ahead, swinging his staff mercilessly to defend himself.

He could hear in her voice how desperately she needed him, wanted him, longed for him. He could think of nothing but her treasured linen dress, wrapped around her tender figure, bleached by the sun and falling off at the shoulder.

‘Husband i’m sinking and i’m frightened’ her words sounded more beautiful and musical than ever ‘I can’t see you or hear you but I know that you are near, come quick, my heart is splitting in two.’

‘Where are you Ornella?’ he called again ‘I’m coming for you my love’.

Rowan reached the northern border of the Fens and bursting through the wall of fog was blinded by the dazzling sunlight bouncing off the body of the clear, open water ahead. He flung the back of his hands in front of his eyes and slowly pushed the sun away as his pupils adjusted to the clear open sky.

And there she was, laid bare in all that the Gods had graced her with.

Ornella was indeed high on a rock as Rowan has foreseen yet she was not weeping. She wasn’t sad or scared, lonely or frightened.

She looked, content.

Ornella was the perfect body of flesh, a flame of elegance drenched with appetite. She lay unveiled on her front, the sun detailing every flawless curve of her honey-coloured body. She swung her head round to face Rowan and detained him with a soul-penetrating, jungle-green stare.

Rowan was seared with emotion. The sea lapped at his feet but he was impaled by the beauty of his wife basking in a light that seemed too brilliant to be true. On any other day, in any other circumstance Rowan may have asked himself what was feeding her happiness, if indeed she had found what she may have come searching for or what had happened to her armband. But on this day, in this moment, nothing else mattered.

The meandering hues of pink and purple that filled the sky created a sound so magnificent that it could only be the work of the Gods. A river of sounds that could turn even the heaviest of burdens or saddest of days into the weight of a feather and carry them for miles and miles towards a sea of endless bliss, flowed melodically through the air.

Ornella turned to lay on her back leaning slightly to her left, supported lazily by her slender elbow with one hand resting on the warm stone and the other encasing her upper thigh. She leisurely drew her fingers up towards her mouth and idly traced the surface of her bottom lip.

“Welcome home my love” Ornella said with a weightless whisper.

“Ornella, I’m so happy to see you, you wouldn’t believe what i’ve been through to get here” Rowan wept.

Ornella sat up, shifting her weight onto her hands stretched out behind her. She tilted her head, brought her knees up to her neck and wiggled her toes “And was I worth the journey?” Ornella said flicking her hair over her shoulder and looking up into the sky.

“Of course you are” Rowan replied immediately ‘Your my wife, i’d travel all the way up to the Garland and back again for you Ornella! You’d need never doubt me again.”

Ornella placed her hands on her knees and comfortably let her legs drop out to the sides, tracing the inside of her thighs with her fingertips as they fell. She then stretched out a pointed hand towards Rowan, gently turned her hand over and with one finger gestured for Rowan to come closer.

“It’s almost over my love, i’m ready to go home now” Ornella promised “I’m ready for you to come and take me.”

He took one step forward towards her and saw another perfect formation of Ornella descend from the sky and settle on a rock a little closer to him. Confused and distracted he turned his attention to this second figure who was too gesturing for him to visit her.

He stepped further into the water and witnessed a third, fourth, fifth and sixth version of Ornella come swooping down from the sky and arrive on smooth rocks protruding from the water. Each Ornella had a marginally different variation about her. One had slightly more fiery coloured hair, another had rounder breasts and another had more uniform toes.

Soon there were twenty or more Ornella’s spread out before Rowan all beckoning him to join them and he was itchy with lust and eroticism. A mortal part of him he’d never known he had revealed itself, an entire world unfolding before his very eyes. Pleasure poured down on him in immeasurable amounts, drowning out the rest of the world around him until the only thing left were their two living souls hauling together with such tension if felt as though it may snap at any moment.

A sharp pain shot through Rowans heel and he collapsed onto one knee. He searched the water around him but saw nothing but sand. When he looked up again the Ornellas were gone and in there place were bird-shaped creatures with human female heads. Rowan looked around in disbelief and staggered back to his feet as polar rain fall hammered down hard around him.

The Seirenes had a grimacing looks about their faces and were becoming impatient for Rowan to join them and although he could now see what it truly was that’s luring him in he still couldn’t help but move in closer as if his body were possessed.

The sky was grey and savage and roll’s of thunder echoed throughout the air followed by a striking flash of lightning.

He tried with all his might to even stand still but to no avail. He took another step forward and another until his head was almost underwater and the last thing he remembered was the sound of a dull club cracking him on the head.

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