THE MIRACLE OF THE THREE SISTERS,

Submitted for Contest #48 in response to: Write about someone who has a superpower.... view prompt

14 comments

(Write about someone who has a superpower.)

In a time near forgotten, in a place few have been, in a world ever changing there came a special girl!

No one could conceive the word “plenty” when barely enough was considered a good year.  No one knew how to fix the world or improve how things were.  

And yet beings existed,  they eked out meager existence and survived.  There was never a thought of future, only of present and how each day could be the last for any one of their small enclave.

~~~~~

In her first memories Zakshi recalls always being hungry, always being too cold or too thirsty or too hot.  There was no word for comfort.   There was no word for Hope.

Zakshi remembers her Mother crying and her Father saying he was sorry, but Zakshi did not understand.   Soon there was a squalling new one and both of her parents cried, and Zakshi  still did not understand.  The new one became Malori a sister!

Now hunger, thirst and comfort was even more meager and the days hot and the nights cold and long.

As time went by, there was more crying and sadness as Pernea and Koslita, two more sisters were added to the family.  The family grew but the things needed to sustain them did not!  Zakshi felt she must do something but if the elders had no direction, no hope, how could a mere girl.   

~~~~~

Days were spent searching out roots or fungi or small rodents or lizards.  As Zakshi made her way through the rocks and caves, she came upon the ancient crone who had been banished years before.  The crone was thin with yellow skin,  the whites of her eyes were yellow and the center red and almost glowing.  She looked away from Zakshi and tried not to notice her.   Zakshi just stood and stared.

Finally the old crone shrieked ,  “What are you looking at, you hopeless thing?”

Zakshi,  having no idea what to do or how to respond blurted out,  “I’m looking at you and wondering how you can live like this, so alone, no one to hunt for you or bring you skins to cover yourself?”

The crone says simply,  “Because I sold my freedom for superpowers,  the superpower to always have food and always be comfortable and I have been in this cave for three hundred years,  I cannot leave!,   I cannot leave, EVER!”

Zakshi stands looking at the crone for a long time.  She is considering how this has worked.  The crone has no family and she cannot move about but she has food and comfort, it seems a fair bargain.

“May I ask who you bargain with?”   asks Zakshi.

In words dripping with disgust the crone replies,  “you bargain with the Gods, who else, you stupid girl!”

“I will bother you for just a few more questions, if I may?”  Zahski asks,  “Who names the terms?  Are they always the same?  Can a girl like me talk to the Gods?  How 

is this done?”

Rubbing her ears, the crone yells  out,  “Stop!  Stop!  That is more words than I have heard in a century, you make my ears hurt!”  

“Just go to the highest point you can find,  on a night with a full moon,  sit alone, and wait.”   “If you are worthy something will come!”    “You May need to go more than once, they will need to know you are sincere!”  “And one more thing, have it clear in your mind what you want and what you are willing to give in return!”  

“Now leave me!”   “Go!  Go Now!”

Zakshi sits and thinks, for hours and days.  She wants nothing for herself, well comfort would be nice but really she wants to help her family and beyond that the enclave.

Finally she thinks she has a plan.  

If she has comfort but cannot leave the cave, how can that help her family?

She must ask for abundance!  The abundance of plenty! Not just comfort!  She must be allowed visitors!  She must be able to share!  All of the necessities of life must be provided in abundance to her in her cave but she must be able to share,  this in exchange for a lifetime in a cave sounded fair!   But was she asking too much?  Would the Gods frown and strike her down?   She didn’t know but those were her terms.

~~~~~

Zahski spoke of this to no one.  But she made her plan and watched the moon move through its cycles.  Finally the night before it was a true full,  she climbed to the highest point she could find,  spreading her skins on the rock, she sat and emptied her mind of all except her terms,  how she might present them to the Gods.  No one came but Zahski did not lose heart or faith.  

The next night was cold and with wind but the moon was full and magnificent.  It was cold and forbidding looking but Zahski felt the tremors in the air, vibes and ripples of energy and she was warmed by her faith,  her hope,  yes hope for the first time, it warmed her as she sat.  And then she felt them in her mind,  not in her hearing or sight, but in her mind,  the Gods were with her.  And she spoke, she spoke aloud the terms of her proposed covenant.

“I ask for abundance!  The abundance of plenty! Not just comfort!  I must be allowed visitors!  I must be able to share!  All of the necessities of life must be provided in abundance to her in her cave but she must be able to share!  This was not negotiable!   I offer this in exchange for a lifetime in a cave!”

The turmoil in her mind was a sign it was being considered and perhaps argued over.  

Finally an actual sound...deep and hoarse, almost unintelligible…”YOU MAY HAVE YOUR WISH, WITH ONE CONDITION,  YOU MUST NEVER TAKE CREDIT FOR YOUR DEEDS,  YOU ARE NOT A HEROINE!  YOU ARE BUT A CONDUIT,  HOW YOU MANAGE THIS IS NOT OUR CONCERN BUT IF YOU FAIL IN THIS CONDITION, YOU AND ALL THAT YOU KNOW WILL BE EXTINGUISHED!”

With great fat tears running down her face, Zakshi agrees!  She will never have a husband or babies but she will give life!

~~~~~

Her life now is sitting in her cave,  she has all she asked for.  Blue is the color that predominates and her symbol is half sun and half moon.  These things remind her health and joy and happiness.  

On one day Malori comes and takes away food for the family and the whole enclave. Malori understands none of this and is cautioned to just bear the food back to the family, no explanations.  Malori is hailed as a heroine as is Pernea when she comes to bring back water and wine.  On yet another day she is visited by Koslita and she brings wood and peat and materials to build and heat.   It is called the Miracle of the Three Sisters.  The enclave and her family seem to have no memory of Zakshi.  She is not a heroine, she is a woman with super powers but she is totally forgotten.

Is it a joke of the Gods to give her a wish but then strip her of any glory?  

As  Zakshi sits in her cave,  the blue color surrounds her in peace and joy,  her symbol reminds her she has this peace and joy.  Most importantly she has the gift of abundance and the privilege to share.  She hopes her banishment is long, centuries long,  she may see her sisters bring their daughters, her nieces and then her nieces will bring their daughters and so abundance flows to the people and they thrive and learn to live,  not merely exist.  It is her invisible superpower !

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14 comments

Lee Dohann
10:53 Jul 12, 2020

Beautiful story. Just love the underlying theme, and I suddenly long to learn more about Zakshi! Watch out for the grammar issues, but will watch out for more of your stories. Well done.

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P. Jean
13:45 Jul 12, 2020

Thank you Lee Ann, I appreciate your comments more than you know!

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P. Jean
18:25 Jul 12, 2020

It is how naive I am. So new to writing! I had no idea I must be perfect in every way, please I am not being snarky....I just somehow thought being creative and writing with feeling, weaving a good story and creating a fabulous tapestry was enough...but now I know I must also be the grammar police and the spelling police and the punctuation police! Sigh...makes me sad and tired!

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Kathleen March
01:56 Jul 09, 2020

Quite intriguing. I would have preferred verb tenses to be more consistent, but the story definitely weaves in and out of the mind. Very nice effort.

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P. Jean
02:13 Jul 09, 2020

I hope experience will create less excitement in my writing and better form. Must try to edit more completely before posting...thank you!

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Kathleen March
02:23 Jul 09, 2020

Excitement is a good thing. I do think the story has lots of merit. If you reread and see what I meant about tenses, remember you don’t have to agree. I only suggested.

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P. Jean
02:51 Jul 09, 2020

Suggestions are good! Thank you!

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Corey Melin
23:11 Jul 03, 2020

A very interesting take on superpowers which is a success. Well done

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P. Jean
00:40 Jul 04, 2020

Thank you Corey! I am not a fan of fantasy so it was not easy! It didn’t seem to want to flow! I like it when words make you feel...this one not so much!

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Laura Clark
09:06 Aug 04, 2020

I really enjoyed this one! I’m glad you recommended it. I love that she hopes that her banishment is long - she’s such a kind soul. Love the tone you use throughout too. It sounds like a myth, a tale of old. I won’t make comments about grammar as this is an older one so no doubt you’ve focused on it a bit more since but there were a few sentences with exclamation marks at the beginning that didn’t fit with your tone and pulled me out of the story a bit. I only mention as I’ve seen this in recent stories too. Just be aware the exclamation mar...

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P. Jean
11:50 Aug 04, 2020

Thanks for reading this one. I feel some are worth more than others. But I also think I need to rethink the prompts. I don’t try very hard with a prompt. About 15 or 20 minutes writing and some show it. But to me they are just exercises, but not serious endeavors.

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Laura Clark
12:51 Aug 04, 2020

Oh my apologies - my understanding was that you were specifically looking for constructive criticism to improve! That’s my fault. I try to distinguish between those looking for more in-depth editing advice and those using this as a creative outlet and tailor my comments accordingly but I have obviously got the wrong end of the stick. I will keep this in mind for future comments! In terms of connecting with the prompt, I think that unless you’re fanatically aiming for the prize, it doesn’t matter if you hit it perfectly. We’ll approve mos...

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P. Jean
14:33 Aug 04, 2020

Never apologize, you did exactly as I asked. I was just further illuminating my status. Of course I wish to improve how else to be accepted or appreciated but the end goal is never the big prize, I am not that foolish. Thank you for reading. I hope you will continue to read as my stories turn up and time permits.

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P. Jean
19:38 Aug 04, 2020

One further question while I have your eyes and ears, since I am still sounding out the appeal, or lack there of, of my writing, how do you determine when to go on with or give up on a bigger project or effort? I have 28,000 plus words written toward ??? I’m not even sure, just an idea that keeps growing and will not quit. How do you know when to stop and begin something else, something new? This one could drag on with no apparent end in sight. I’ve just reread it looking for tension and drama and reasons others may like it, ther...

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