Each night, as the red sun dipped over the horizon, Lorena stood by the castle gates, looking out upon the moonlit moorland. Her sword was in her hand, the rings of her mail shone gold-bright, and her dark eyes glinted beneath her polished helm.

The wind blew cold against her cheek and carried the whispers of far-off voices: her mother lost to plague, her father slain by steel, and her bold love Badogund who had ridden over the hills into battle never to return.

They begged her to come to them, to kneel before the darkness that lurked upon the moor, the shadows that spread through the skies, and the black-eyed emperor in his rough-hewn throne.

Lorena stood firm.

They tested her each night for a hundred years and still she did not yield.

Word Count: 135

This is for Flash Fiction for Aspiring Writers. Thanks to Priceless Joy for running the challenge and The Magesticgoldenrose for providing the prompt photo!


  1. Reena Saxena says:

    The darkness in the story has a lyrical beauty. Very well done!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. JS Brand says:

    Evocatively written – I could imagine myself on the moor.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Balaka says:

    Reminded me of the poem Highwayman…very well written

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Moon says:

    such a wonderful story!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Wonderful story! Very otherworldly and mysterious! Loved it!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. michael1148humphris says:

    Lorena is the sort of leader one needs when the black eyed emperor is about. I very much enjoyed this story

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Enjoyed this. 100 years is a long time to be tempted. Surprised the old emperor hasn’t thought of something new, though!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. Excellent writing! I could envision this unfolding.
    Annie at ~McGuffy’s Reader~

    Liked by 1 person

  9. afairymind says:

    Beautifully and evocatively written, JA. I hope Lorena continues to stand strong. 🙂


  10. kalpans solsi says:

    A dark sad story neatly penned. hope Lorena finds peace.

    Liked by 1 person

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