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Divine Intervention (sample)
Srathi trembled as the cold mountain wind knotted her hair. Despite the warm blanket around her bare shoulders, despite the fire blazing on the ground beside the bed, she shivered. The wedding ceremony had ended, with a great cry, at the instant the sun touched the horizon. The ornate canopy and billowing curtains blocked her view of the sky as the people fled in silence down the foothills, and now she awaited her terrible bridegroom. She sat on the bed, cross-legged and bound, alone on Zenith Sun Day in the Place of Sacrifice.
Something touched her bound wrist. She looked in vain for what it could be, not daring to move more than her eyes. A laugh caressed the air, barely audible. Sudden vertigo spun her senses; the Place of Sacrifice disappeared from her view, the wind-swept treetops and the fluttering curtains washed into a blank whiteness. The sound of the breeze dimmed, and a roaring filled Srathi's ears. She fought to draw a breath.
Then the roar faded, the white dimmed, and she was in another bed, in a room with hard square walls and no fire, and before her, terribly real, was the Nameless Deity. He stood, naked and gleaming, his head and his body hairless, his eyes coldly penetrating. Srathi felt her own nakedness acutely. Never in her life had she appeared before a man unclothed. And though this was a God, he was also, quite evidently, Male.
"Do you come willing, or forced?" The God's voice echoed slightly.
Srathi had been taught the correct answer, but she didn't give it immediately. She had felt honored, indeed, to be chosen. She had agreed to it. But she had never had a chance to think about whether she was willing. Now, she thought about it.
"Both," she whispered, drawing the words inward to not be heard. "I agreed to it." Then she looked into his eyes, and saw that he had heard her already. She closed her eyes. They had said that if she displeased the God, he would take her life anyway, but not grant the favors to the people.
Cover design by Danica B. West, all rights reserved. Composited and photomanipulated from: hand of god, photograph by Damien Dempsey at http://www.flickr.com/photos/yarra64/5642725837/in/photostream/ ; 2 bunnies, photograph by Daniel Hall at http://www.flickr.com/photos/pictographic/5723043773/ ; 1 bunny, photograph by Daniel Hall at http://www.flickr.com/photos/pictographic/5723565876/ ; go stones, photograph by Ralph Unden at http://www.fotopedia.com/items/flickr-2285032267 All photos used under Creative Commons license.
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This page created 22 September 2011
Last update 21 March 2014