There was a chill in the room; a draught with little wisps of cold coming through the cracks of the old walls. She always said that was where the ghosts came in and went out. It was their way. He shivered and pulled his sweater a bit closer as though that really did anything. He gazed down at her still face; all peaceful and dreamy and pulled up the blanket a bit closer to her chin to keep her warm.
He poured himself a glass of deep red wine and a rheumy smoky laugh chortled up from his dying lungs. No, as still and peaceful as she was he’d still tell her a story. It was their way for as long as things had been and she loved his stories; especially the scary ones.
He closed his yes and breathed in deeply calming his nerve and letting the words collect up in his brain. It was always the same; all these words, jumbled and meaning so many things and having to sort them out into something before they dribbled out of his mouth. Sometimes they came faster, sometimes slower, but if they didn’t come out in the right order the story would never be any good and he hated to disappoint her.
He took a pill before stopping swallowing quickly so that he wouldn’t taste it.
It never mattered what the story was about. It was the telling, the communication. The words tumbling from him into her and he could always see her reaction to them and sometimes that spurred him on to try and make her happier.
Sometimes she’d fall asleep and sometimes if he hit a certain note she couldn’t sleep and her eyes would be wide open. If he was feeling persnickity he’d hesitate or pause which he knew would make her crazy at moments like this.
He never worried what to say or what type of story to make. She loved them all.
Another pill. Another sip of the dark red wine. It was time to start.
Once upon a time there was a land with a great river running through it. It was a lush river with fat happy fish that sometimes ended up on people’s supper plates. The grass was ripe and green which made the cows very happy and full of milk which went so nicely with cookies. The sun was yellowy and the skies always blue. It rarely rained and when it did it they were big drops that sang songs as they plopped down exploding and bringing life to everything turning the world green.
The apple trees would blossom and the bees would buzz from tree to plant to weed; from leaf to leaf sucking in the nectar of life. It was this kind of place that prince and princesses lived. Goblins were not allowed and Gnomes were too short to get over the pretty fences that lined the fields for no reason other than to look pretty. It was good times and nobody ever remembered anything other than good times.
He looked down to her for a reaction but she was calm and peaceful. Another pill, another sip of wine. It was magical.
A unicorn stood on a rock gazing into the sun, which was a silly thing to do even for a unicorn….