I haven’t posted a story in a while, so here’s a dark tale to tie in with the vibrant Notting Hill Carnival, which takes place today and tomorrow. I submitted this to Tube Flash – very short stories inspired by London tube stations, and brooches. Do have a look; it’s a great way to give the imagination a work out. (I’ve submitted two stories so far.)
The tale that follows was inspired by my experience of Notting Hill as a St John Ambulance volunteer; someone who gets to deal with the messy bits. I quite like the character, although I worry he’s a tad influenced by Sandman…
He moves in the silence beyond the colour and cacophony of the carnival. The floats are finished. The din diminished. The revellers retired. But the blood, the blood remains.
Now, is his domain. His time. His space. Every year the same. To this gathering of exultant humanity the servant of Happiness is called. He weaves his art tenderly.
Young folks, hungry folks, nameless, faceless parts of a throng, thrilling at the sudden touch of a sharp shard of glass in their palm. Empowered with improvised weapon and soft whispers; Take what you want. Take what you need. You have the power. You deserve it. It is yours. And you are mine. You will always be mine. And I will love you.
He needs few souls for sustenance. He is not greedy. He only takes what he needs to survive. Only a few; softly broken, gently nudged into the dark. Just a little blood, just a little pain, over quickly. Hidden amongst so much joy, it matters little. The humans understand that Happiness has her price. And she sends him, year after year, to balance her daughter Euphoria.
He steps quietly through the dark ways. The raven sated. Fallen souls collected. A few more to love. To cherish, for eternity.
He will rest now, for another year.