Categories
Speculative Fiction

Rooted Out

Four long years of work, of researching, of thinking what to write next – all of it buried in that thick muddy soil found next to the river bank. Why? Because he told her that she had written a miserable story that nobody would ever want to read, that it was a literary abomination, and finished his murderous speech by telling her that she should definitely smother the writer in her.

His words killed her that day.

All along the way, under the pouring rain, she achingly sobbed while holding tightly against her heart the leather bag that contained the depth of her thoughts, the realm of her imagination. She cried so much that an excruciating pain struck her heart, where suddenly everything looked broken – the pavement, the surrounding, her dreams, her self-esteem, her self-confidence as a writer. Nothing remained in her heart and head; she was empty, devoid of dreams and faith in life.

That’s where overwhelmed with disappointment and a nameless feeling of emptiness, she tore each page from her manuscript and buried them in the thickened muddy soil. Afterwards she stood under the heavy pouring rain, where her mind wandered back in time, right when she started to write that story. Her mind recollected every bits of happiness and pride she felt after she had been able to finish a chapter; and remembered as well those silent nightly hours where she only had for companion the sounds of leaves rattling with the breeze, and the sight of the moon and stars through her broad and wide window, all the while she wrote till the break of day.

As her self-confidence slowly returned, she suddenly realized that she had made a mistake. Instantly she fell down on her knees and started to dig the muddy soil with bare hands, in search of her treasured manuscripts. But unfortunately, due to the heavy rainfall that soaked the soil, all the thin papers had already dissolved in water. Shocked, she suddenly had a brutal seizure, while at the same time a strange and paranormal phenomenon happened. The rain stopped, and all the ink from the book manuscript that had dissolved in water suddenly emerged out from the thick mud as droplets that floated till her body. The ink covered her skin, and little by little it morphed into the words that made up her story. Her body from head to toe became the book that she had written, where each page she had torn to bury now tattooed her skin.

Suddenly she felt light as a feather; the rain fell again, but this time she didn’t get wet; it was as if she was surrounded by a transparent bubble. She felt the strange sensation of floating without a body, and in the blink of an eye she was in front of the house of Mr.Feith, that same vile writer that had been so rude to her earlier. He was sitting by the window, writing at the light of a large candelabra. And as soon as she wanted to know what Mr.Feith was writing, she instantly found herself perching at the back of his head, looking at what he was doing. That’s when she understood that Mr.Feith was busy copying word for word the story from a copy of her own book manuscript. He omitted nothing. Enraged and out of her, she knocked down the candelabra, whose candles set fire to the papers that were on his desk; then right after, all of the words that were on her body materialized in human shape in front of a terrorized Mr.Feith. It strangled him brutally, then released his neck right before he stopped breathing. Horrified, he ran away screaming insanely, while hungry flames devoured his house. Everything burned down quickly.

One month later Wri Wright slowly and painfully opened her eyes on the bed of a hospital. They said that passers-by found her unconscious by the river bank, soaked wet, with both her hands buried in the mud, alongside a leather bag.

“Hello Miss Wright,” said the man with a pleasant face. He sat next to her, a book manuscript in his hand. Her manuscript. “I was one among the passers-by who found you by the river, a little bit messed up you were. Anyhow, I gave myself permission to read your story… you are the one who wrote that, is it not? That book manuscript was in a leather bag beside you.”

“What! The manuscript was still in my bag? But!” She tried hard to remember what exactly happened to her on that day, but only blurry images of heavy rainfall, mud, and tears came to her. “I’m sorry, I don’t remember what happened that day, but I am the author of that story.”

“Well then, let me introduce myself, I am the chief editor of a well-known publishing house, and I can tell you that you are a very talented writer who wrote a very unique and captivating story… and I want to publish your book, and as well launch your career as an author… is that okay with you, Miss Wright?”

Wri Wright was suddenly overwhelmed with an immense feeling of joy and gratitude. “Thank you so much… thank you one thousand times. Yes, I heartily accept your proposition. You are making my dream come true.”

“I was on my way to see Mr.Feith when I stumbled on you… have you ever heard of him?”

“Yes, I heard that he could help me with the publishing of my book… I even had an appointment with him… but I don’t remember when,” she frowned, trying hard to remember.

“Luckily you didn’t put your book manuscript in his hand… he is a fraud and a crook. For years now he has been submitting to my publishing house plagiarized works. We were not aware, until recently, when an article appeared on him, and where our publishing house suddenly lost its good reputation… Anyway, that same day we found you, people picked him up in the street… he seemed terrorized, they said, raving mad about the devil being after him… he even burned his house.”

“Well, that would have made a good horror story,” she said dreamily.

“You bet,” he responded keenly.

***

P.S: It has taken me two weeks to write and edit this story, so practical and constructive criticism are welcomed.

By Eiravel

I live somewhere in the South West of the Island of Mauritius. I am a mother, a spouse, a great life enthusiast. I love writing fiction, poems, and blog; I love listening to music, watch movies, read good books; also, love the sublime and the strange; and I am also interested in all types and forms of art that pleases my mind. I've even self-published a science-fiction book (Darcocyte), and I aspire to make a living through my writings.

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