Fantasy Horror

Old witch, Gurgleplop, she likes her repetition

Her curse is foul, just as her bowels, and leads to your perdition

Old hag, Gurgleplop, eats to her volition

Once you disgorge, her will is forged and feeds as your mortician!”

“Ah, Balin, good to see ya. You hear those fools singin’ in there?” asked a patron smoking a pipe outside the town’s only tavern. A sign painted with a Green Egg swung above the man’s head as he said, “You’d think they’d get tired of that old song, but they just keep singin’ it and singin’ it.”’

Balin knew the tavern well, as did most folks in these parts. The Green Egg. Everyone considered it the rowdiest drinking hole this side of the western woods, and it was just what Balin needed after hearing it from his missus earlier in the day.

“Aye,” Balin said as he approached the tavern. “That why ya takin’ a breath of fresh air, Jon?”

“Aye,” Jon said and blew out a puff of smoke. “Just tired of that song, I reckon. If that old hag ever tried to curse me, I’d gut her before she’d put a spell on me, I tell ya. Ain’t right. People make up stories like that to scare children or as drinking songs and whatnot. It ain’t right, not at all.”

“Well, a little singing ain’t gonna keep me from the ale,” Balin said and opened the heavy wooden door to go inside for a drink.

The Green Egg was having quite a ruckus of a night. Balin pushed past swaying patrons spilling beer over mugs as they laughed, shouted, and sang.

“Hey, James, bring me some ale,” Balin asked the bartender.

“Balin! Good to see you! Eager to drown your thoughts, are ya? That fat wife of yours kick you out again?” James said with a smile, reaching out to clasp Balin on the shoulder.

“Less talking, more drinking,” Balin responded and brushed James’ hand off his shoulder. James shook his head from behind the bar and grabbed a mug for the man. James filled the mug for Balin, who immediately grabbed it and upturned the contents into his mouth in a single continuous pull.

“Now, now! That’s the Balin I know!” James said with a laugh. “I swear that gullet of yours is a prize! You can throw just about anything down it, eh?”

Balin slammed his mug on the bar and said, “Give me another. And keep’em coming!”

James laughed again and poured Balin another drink. The night went on, and Balin lost count of how many of the ales he consumed. Eventually, he started to get tired and wandered out of the bar on his way back to his wife. A mist had formed in the evening, and it was hard to see the muddy road home. Balin stumbled as he walked and soon left the road to find himself lost in the misty, deep woods.

Balin leaned on a tree and then relieved himself with his trousers dropped to his ankles. He passed out there, standing as he dozed off to sleep. The moon was high overhead when Balin slipped off the tree and fell to the ground. When he did, he awoke to find a figure standing over him. Balin’s head was throbbing, and his vision was blurry, but the dark cloak the figure wore made him fearful.

“W-Who are you?” Balin asked the figure standing over him.

“I’m the witch of these woods,” the figure said. Its voice was like the roughness of sandpaper and as shrill as fingernails dragged across slate. “And you are trespassing, my sweet.”

Balin’s fear sobered him, and his eyes focused on the witch’s hood. Balin reached for his trousers and quickly pulled them up, then jumped awkwardly to his feet. The world tilted as he rose. He towered over the cloaked figure that was no taller than a child.

“I’m in no mood to trifle with the likes of some old hag living in the woods. Begone!” Balin said and pushed her with enough force to throw her to the ground, but instead, she dodged and grabbed Balin by the arm.

“My name is Gur—” the cloaked woman said, but the words seemed to cut off as she choked and coughed.

Balin tried to jerk his arm away, but she held tight, and his flesh tore. He looked down at his arm and saw blood pouring from wounds on his skin. Where the woman’s hand grasped him, her fingers had turned to talons like those from a hawk and latched onto him. The hag cackled a raspy laugh and pulled on Balin’s arm with great force, bringing him to his knees. He was now face-to-face with the witch. Balin tried to use his other hand to pry her talons from his arm, but the grip tightened, causing Balin to let out a roar. He jerked to escape the hag’s grasp, but her grip was like a vice, and all his struggle only made the talons dig deeper into his flesh.

The hag used her free hand to pull back the hood of her cloak and again tried to speak, “My name is Gurgle-” but again coughed, hacked, and wheezed, unable to finish saying her name. Balin could see something bulging in her throat and was frozen in terror as he stared into the witch’s yellow eyes. The witch’s face was horrid. It was a patchwork of old and new flesh. Some spots on her face looked like the skin was hundreds of years old and decaying so much on her cheek that you could see through it to the icky yellow gums inside her mouth. Yet, other parts of her skin were new, like a baby’s supple, tender skin, fresh with life, and near her chin, the skin was scruffy whiskers like a man in his prime and full of vigor.

The witch smiled, showing jagged and broken decaying teeth, then said, “My name is Gurgle… plop.” The last syllable came with hesitation, but when the witch said, “plop,” a green egg-shaped stone covered in yellow slime fell out of her mouth onto the leaves of the forest floor.

Gurgleplop quickly picked up the stone and then shoved it against Balin’s lips, chipping his front tooth and causing his mouth to bleed. The hag pushed on the stone, grinding it against his teeth, but Balin clenched his jaw, and she could not force it into his mouth.

“Eat, so I can eat,” Gurgleplop said and began to snort, sniffle, and gurgle until a yellow slime seeped from the corners of her crusted lips. She pulled back the stone briefly, cackled, and then yelled, “Give granny a kiss!”

Gurgleplop pulled on Balin’s arm, bringing him close, then puckered her lips onto his. Balin felt Gurgleplop force the yellow liquid through his lips, and it filled his mouth. It tasted like a mix of yogurt and fish oil. Balin opened his mouth to spit out the foulness, but as he did, the witch again shoved the egg-shaped stone into his mouth. She drove the stone down his throat, and he bit the witch’s hand before panic made him gasp for air. She pulled away from him and melded with the shadows of the dark woods. Balin felt lightheaded and unable to breathe until he reflexively swallowed and felt the stone fall into his stomach with a plop. Balin then blacked-out and fell.

Balin awoke in the woods, covered in leaves and dirt from sleeping on the ground. It was daylight now. He felt hungover and glancing at the sky seemed to imply it was afternoon. As the memory of the previous night came upon him, he quickly looked at his arm. Scratches were there, but they didn’t look like the wounds from his dream.

“Just a dream,” he said to himself.

But it was not a dream.

When Balin found the muddy road and walked home, his fat wife was waiting on the porch. He didn’t like her much because she talked back to him.

“Where have you been?” Balin’s wife, Susan, asked with the triteness of disheartened matrimony.

“I was at the Green Egg and don’t need your huffing at me asking questions. I just want to go inside for a nap.”

“A nap?” she asked incredulously. “There’s still chores to do about. You got fields that ain’t been worked in a week, and you’re out all night without a care. So, you say you ain’t off with no hussy at the Green Egg, eh? Get’s harder and harder to believe each night you don’t come home. I ain’t having it, I tell ya!”

Susan descended from the porch to face Balin before he walked onto the steps of his own house. Her fat face was red, and her clothes were dirty from doing the chores Balin neglected.

“If you aren’t going to help around today, you best just go back where ya came from. Maybe if you get back tomorrow and I see you in the fields, you can come inside, but not today! Oh no, you just get on outta here!”

Balin became furious that he was being kept out of his home. He had been through a rough night with crazy dreams and such, falling asleep in the woods, and it was starting to make him feel hungry… and thirsty. In fact, he knew at that moment the only thing that might make him feel better was to have a few ales at the Green Egg.

His anger faded at the thought of a nice, smooth ale, so he said to Susan, “I’m going to the Green Egg if you need to find me for more yelling.” With that, he turned and started walking back down the muddy road to the tavern.

The sun was setting as Balin approached the Green Egg, and he could already hear them singing that damn song again.

Old witch, Gurgleplop, she likes her repetition

Her curse is foul, just as her bowels, and leads to your perdition

Old hag, Gurgleplop, eats to her volition

Once you disgorge, her will is forged and feeds as your mortician!”

Balin looked down at his arm, and the scratches from before were gone, healed. He smiled as he thought about how the song must’ve seeped into his psyche the previous night to invade his dreams. Or did that happen the night before last, he thought?

“Ah, Balin, good to see ya. You hear those fools singin’ in there?” asked Jon, smoking a pipe. “You’d think they’d get tired of that old song, but they just keep singin’ it and singin’ it.”’

“Well, a little singing ain’t gonna keep me from the ale,” Balin said and went inside.

The rest of the night went about the same as the previous one, and the one previous to that, and maybe the one previous to that for all Balin could remember. It seemed that his memories always got hazy right before drinking, but perhaps that was just reflecting later after the drink. Either way, it was late when Balin left the Green Egg, and he stumbled down the muddy road.

The mist had returned tonight, and Balin again lost his way. He found himself off the road in the woods just like the previous night, but something in his drunken stupor made him scared. He dared not fall asleep, but he was feeling very tired. Maybe tired wasn’t the right word. He felt…heavy.

“I just need to rest my legs a bit,” he said as he plopped down in some leaves with his back against a tree.

To Balin’s credit, he did not fall asleep. Although, this was likely due to the increasing discomfort he was feeling in his stomach. At first, he thought he had just drunk too much, but the pain kept getting worse, and soon he found himself writhing in pain.

“Aye, I promise not to touch the ale again! For it will be my death if this pain is any tell!”

“Aye,” came a voice in reply. It sounded like branches scratching against a window during a storm. “You will not touch the drink again, but oh, the other you’s will.”

Balin squinted into the dark and saw Gurgleplop calmly and slowly walk toward him. Balin burped uncontrollably, and a twisting pain in his gut made him feel that he might be split in two. He started rolling on the ground and convulsing. Gurgleplop began to sing in her harrowing voice,

Old witch, Gurgleplop, she likes her repetition

Her curse is foul, just as her bowels, and leads to your perdition

Old hag, Gurgleplop, eats to her volition

Once you disgorge, her will is forged and feeds as your mortician!”

Gurgleplop smiled as she sang the short song over and over. She licked her lips and eyed Balin like a buffet as he rolled about. When Balin’s energy to act from the pain was sapped, he lay motionless, yellow liquid dripping from his mouth. Gurgleplop approached Balin and helped him sit upright. Standing, she was as tall as he was sitting. Her hand was on his back, and she started hitting it gently as if he was a baby.

“There, there, my sweet. It will be over for you soon.”

Balin then started feeling massive contractions in his gut and knew it was the egg. He gagged and coughed as he regurgitated the egg. The process was slow, and he felt the egg stuck in his throat several times, but it was dislodged with a hefty smack on his back from Gurgleplop. Then, in a final mighty heave, he felt his ribs break, and his jaw crack as the green egg-shaped stone exited his mouth and fell with a plop on the forest floor.

Through watery eyes, Balin could see that the egg had become bigger. In fact, as he watched it, he thought he could see it grow.

Gurgleplop picked up the egg and placed it reverently in front of Balin. Balin was paralyzed, from fear, pain, or magic; he did not know. Gurgleplop then started undressing Balin until he was naked. She then stacked the clothes neatly beside her.

“It’s not so often that one gets to see themselves born, my sweet. Well, except for you. And that’s why I like to start from the bottom up… so you can watch.”

Gurgleplop then removed a knife and fork from under her cloak and began cutting strips of flesh from Balin, starting with his feet. As she ate him, he felt no more pain. Instead, he was entranced as he watched the egg grow. By the time Gurgleplop was consuming his breast, the egg Balin had regurgitated was as large as a man.

“Ah, now is the time of rebirth,” Gurgleplop said. And as she did, the egg hatched, and an unconscious man appeared, sprawled and naked. Balin looked at the man’s face and saw it was his own.

Gurgleplop ate her meal, bones and all, then put the old Balin’s clothes onto the new Balin, knowing he would wake the next day to see her again. She sang as she strolled through the forest in wait,

Old witch, Gurgleplop, she likes her repetition

Her curse is foul, just as her bowels, and leads to your perdition

Old hag, Gurgleplop, eats to her volition

Once you disgorge, her will is forged and feeds as your mortician!”

June 24, 2022 19:51

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Mark Wilhelm
03:36 Jun 30, 2022

What an awesome tale!! thank you for bringing that to life. I have a podcast of similar stories and I'm always on the look out for new stories. Would it be alright if I told this tale? Visit FrighteningTales.com and see if it's a fit for you. If you're on board let me know. And if it's just not something you're interested in - thanks again for the entertaining tale.


Dempsey Hyatt
16:05 Jun 30, 2022

Wow! I'd be honored to have it read on your podcast. I listened to your podcast on Spotify and really like your voice acting. It would be awesome to hear the Gurgleplop song in its variations from each singer! Feel free to send me a message on Facebook (same username) if you want to collaborate further.


Mark Wilhelm
18:17 Jul 11, 2022

visit frighteningtales.com and have a listen. This was fun to record thanks again for letting me play in your sandbox.


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