Photo Credit: valyeszter
YAFF Muse is a new weekly blog series featuring some YA Fiction Fanatics members. In this series, we’ll post original short stories created from an image meant to inspire our Muse. Hope you enjoy! And don’t forget to check out the other YAFFers participating in this series (links below).
Peering out the window, I raised the binoculars focusing on the tanned biceps of the new neighbor. He looked about my age, shaggy dark hair, a Celtic knot tattoo circling his upper arm. God, he was hot. It’d be hard to stay away from him—but I had no choice. I wanted no more blood on my hands.
“Jessalyn, what are you doing?” Grandma said from behind me.
I cringed. “Don’t worry, I’m not interested in him, just looking.”
Her bony fingers traced the outer rim of the tea cup, blue flowers dashed on the side, the fragile glass deceptive. “He’ll come around, just like the rest of them. They can’t resist you.”
“I won’t let you do this again,” I said, slamming the binoculars down. “You’re suppose protect me, not run my life.”
Grandma’s eyes narrowed. “You know the rules. If they call on you then I have the right to administer the test.”
“He won’t come over, I’ll avoid him and be stuck in these godforsaken ruins of a house for the rest of my life.”
The floorboards creaked under my feet as I moved away from the window. As if sensing me, the boy stopped walking, box in hand. His gold eyes met mine and I sucked in a lungful of air. The intensity of his gaze branded me, a slow smile spreading across his lips.
“See, already he’s succumbed to your charms. Might as well invite him in and get it over with,” Grandma said, carrying the tea cup back to the kitchen.
No. I wouldn’t do it, not this time. Already, I smelled Grandma’s brew, the sickly sweet scent of my blood and her tea leaves. I hurried into the backyard and collapsed under the willow tree.
The branches groaned as the wind picked up and something dropped down behind me.
“At last,” a voice said. “I’ve been searching for you.”
Leaping to my feet, I whipped around to find the boy standing there. “You shouldn’t be here,” I said.
His lips curved into a smile. “My name is Daire.”
“Please you don’t understand.”
“Jessalyn, look at me,” he whispered.
How did he know my name? His fingers brushed my arm; eyes glowing with an inhuman aura and suddenly several lifetimes flickered in my mind.
The backdoor opened and Grandma came out with the tea cup. “Perfect timing. Jessalyn, grab a chair for our guest, it’s time for tea.”
Daire accepted the cup. Not again. Too many had fallen victim to Grandma.
“Don’t drink it,” I shouted.
It was too late. I waited for him to fall to the ground, but he didn’t. Instead he grabbed hold of Grandma’s arm, jerking her forward.
“Your elixir won’t work on me old woman. I’ve come to claim what is mine.”
Grandma’s eyes widened. “It can’t be. No one survives. You must be…”
“Immortal,” Daire finished. “You killed the warriors, I sent to find her. You knew she’d choose me.”
“No,” Grandma snarled.
Daire crushed the tea cup in his hands and I watched Grandma chip and break, turning to dust before my eyes.
“The spell is broken,” I said.
Daire wrapped me in his arms, the cup and Grandma, both gone. “Nothing will separate us again.”
Check out the other short stories by my fellow YAFF members (our critique group).