O’er the Hills

The bell tolled low at the hilltop and slowly, the voices of the monks rose to the heavens in rolling waves from the monastery. They echoed over the hill and down the valley, tumbling through the rushes. The wind sighed, playing an accompaniment with the blades of overgrown grasses beating against each other softly; a susurrus of murmured hallelujahs.
The skies wept softly, joining in the instrumental as the pitter-patter of raindrops tickled the aural senses.

She stood there at the foot of the hill, red hair matted on her pale face, dull grey cloths moulded to her lithe frame, drenched in the rain; listening. Her nostrils widened, taking in the smell of the rich, damp earth. Her hands crept to her throat, eyes wide with wonder and shiny as they quivered with unshed tears. She swallowed soundlessly as the melodic humming washed over her.
Unthinking, she pushed one foot in front of the other, walking. Her bare feet dug into the wet ground, wet clomps of soil finding refuge in the spaces between her toes and in her toenails.
She trekked up the hill; stumbling but kept going, not saying a word, as if any sound from her would break the lightly woven magic.
Like a mage, without no gifts; the voices, her guiding star to where her musical Messiah would lay.
She knew no fatigue, her body knew no weariness. The sweet sounding harmony nourishing her limbs with strength when she faltered.

Suddenly, she panicked.
The nearer she walked to the monastery, the fainter the music got.
Her heart knocked in her chest hard.
She ran; her hands flailing as if trying to urge the singers to carry on, urging the music to stay.

She finally got to the old monastery and stood in front of the old wooden door, breathing hard.
The music had stopped.
She choked on a sob, her lips trembling as she struggled to contain herself.  With shaking hands, she pushed at the wooden doors until they opened, a dark womb letting her in. She walked into the gloomy chapel, feet taking care to walk carefully, as if the slightest noise could…what?

It was empty.

Her vivid green eyes suddenly went wide.

Where…?

She let out a single gasp.
Her pale face turned sickly white and like a lone wilting rose, she swayed on her feet and ungracefully, fell, a crumpled heap of the dull and the damp.
Her ears picked up faint footsteps and she tried in vain to get up, to see them.
They came into her view, brown hooded figures, making a circle around her.
She stretched a hand weakly, help? a command to continue?
She stopped short.

Bones.
They had bones where flesh should be, peeking from beneath their robes.
Her thin mouth rounded in a feeble ‘O’.

Suddenly the singing began again.
She sighed and slowly, her eyes flickered to a close, eyelashes kissing each other.

One of the figures carried her gently and slowly, they all walked, disappearing like the early morning mist after the first rays of sunshine. Their music trembled faintly in the air after they had gone, like a whispered goodbye to a lover before it too, disappeared.

**************

Never go up the hill, the locals would caution their wide-eyed children.
‘Beware the music’, they would say in hushed tones. ‘Beware the hill, the snatcher of souls’.

The hill calls; the hill beckons.

Resist it…

Resist the music…

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This was written under the influence of this ——> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FKtBpuLrI2s

Listen and be calmed.

Have a lovely day.

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