The All-Mother’s Path

Posted: July 17, 2017 by J.A. Prentice in Flash Fiction
Tags: , , , , , , ,


Forty days Muirdain had walked the path of All-Mother Macca through the wilderness. Her fair skin was burnt crimson and her hair was a fiery tangle of curls and thorns. Her scabbard hung empty by her side.

By the foot of a green hill, where stone steps carried on the ancient path, she met a woman, clothed in rags, her eyes milk-white and her teeth rot-brown. The woman called to her.

“Pilgrim, have you water for an old woman?”

Muirdain stepped past her.

“Spare a moment.”

Muirdain kept climbing.

“What brings you to this road?”

“Penance,” Muirdain replied. “The Queen asked that I walk the All-Mother’s path. Only then may I earn my sword again.”

“Then stop and spare me some water.”

Muirdain didn’t look back.

The All-Mother sighed. Three times she had tested the knight and three times Muirdain had failed.

She did not give fourth chances.

Word Count: 148

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

  1. Michael says:

    Hmm, a fatal mistake one would think. Great response to this image.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! Great story J.A.! Looks like she will not be getting her sword. I really enjoyed this story!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Reena Saxena says:

    How we mix our priorities at times ….

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Martin Cororan says:

    I shall go and rethink my life!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Iain Kelly says:

    Hasn’t learned her lesson after all that walking! Nice take from the prompt.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. What a great message your story tells. I thoroughly enjoyed that. Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. michael1148humphris says:

    Some individuals need telling how it is straight. Loved your story.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. James says:

    You’d think after the first or second time, the knight would have figured it out.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Testing times for Muirdain and had failed. life does not give a person many chances. A story with a good moral. Helping in a person ranks on top of the priority list.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Shivangi says:

    If only she was more humane and not preoccupied with penance…excellent take!

    Liked by 1 person

  11. Joy Pixley says:

    Wonderful cautionary tale. She seems determined not to learn her lesson from this quest, and will pay the price. The voice and pacing are spot-on, too — well done, Joshua!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Error! He should have learnt kindness too.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Enkin Anthem says:

    3 chances are plenty enough. Sometimes they’re already 2 too many ^^

    Liked by 1 person

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