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Goddess of Vengeance

Daughter of Medusa

By Justine SeifertPublished 3 months ago Updated 3 months ago 11 min read
Top Story - April 2024
Goddess of Vengeance
Photo by Sebastian Unrau on Unsplash

“They are getting closer, Saoirse,” the trees whisper, “You need to hide.”

My blood pounds in my ears and my chest feels heavy with doubt. What if I never make it to Serpent Cove? I shake my head as if to rid myself of the thought. Fear would not overtake my mind or shorten my strides. I could not stop; not yet. I had to gain more ground even though my body was giving out and the necromancers were closing in. If I were to be caught, I would never get another chance.

I owe it to my husband and daughter to see their deaths avenged. If I die in the captivity of King Alastor there will be no one left to defend their honor. I will not allow that beast to take everything from me without retribution.

Alastor had my husband and daughter deemed traitors to the crown. He made claims they were a threat to the Kingdom of Aqoseris. The people I once called neighbors and friends turned on my family in an instant. They turned Christos and Inesa into the King, and in front of a mock jury of the Alastor’s allies, my husband and daughter were charged with crimes of shadow necromancy. For their crimes they were to be burned alive for the Kingdom’s viewing satisfaction. I however was found to be under the influence of my husband and daughter’s dark magic, capable of rehabilitation at the discretion of the King.

I begged King Alastor to drop the charges. My family was innocent, but he knew that already. I had been so naïve to the ways of a wicked man’s heart. Lust can change a man in an instant and cloud his mind with depravity. I learned quickly that Alastor had been infiltrated by a dark spirit, one willing to kill anyone that got in his way of having me. Alastor made his intentions clear from the start of my rehabilitation: I was his property, and I was going to watch my old life burn alongside him. He wanted me to fear and obey him. He wanted me to understand that I would never be free again. He wanted me to believe that my thoughts were no longer my own. He wanted me to understand that he owned me body and soul.

The day my husband and daughter were put to death I sat beside Alastor as a beaten down “rehabilitated” good little witch. The final step in my rehabilitation was to let go of my old life. The nail in the coffin. That day is seared into my memory, the screams, the heartache, the all-consuming pain, but also the faces of every person that took pleasure in their demise. I must reach Serpent Cove and call upon the goddess Tisiphone. Only then will I be able to exact my vengeance on those who caused my family such suffering. I will make it to the cove.

My feet burn as I pump them raw over the earth. My breathe echoes through my head and my nose drips over my lips. The thin linen dress I have on clings to my body, and my hair sticks to my face and neck. A stich forms in my side nearly making me double over and causing bile to rise in the back of my throat. The fire in my chest has become unbearable, and the whispers of warning from the trees have turned into an onslaught of angry commands to seek shelter.

I risk a glance over my shoulder. I cannot see King Alastor’s army of necromancers, but I can feel them drawing closer. The snake tattooed on my palm swirls in distress at my imminent capture. I want to keep going, but the reality of my situation is clear, I need to disappear. Stopping short I size up the trees around me. Sensing my intention an old oak calls out to me.

“Come to me, girl.”

I make my way over to the sizeable oak and contemplate how I will get my battered feet and hands up the tree without leaving a trail of blood behind, but before I can make another move the tree reaches down its branches and lifts me high into the air. The height leaves me breathless. Above the ground and concealed by the massive grouping of leaves I sigh a bit of relief for the first time in nearly three days.

“Thank you, kind spirit,” I whisper.

“Alessa,” the oak replies.

I always knew there was incredible magic in the Whispering Woods, but I had no idea the lengths the spirits would go to help an insignificant witch like me. I was hardly powerful and the only value I held was in the fact that King Alastor desired me. Whatever the reason I was grateful for their help even if it meant being in their debt.

“They are coming. Do not make a sound.”

Holding my breath, I look down from Alessa’s branches and see one of Alastor’s sorcerers.

“Come on out, Saoirse,” Maleficus snarls, “I can smell you.”

My breath is still caught in my throat and my body has gone stiff. My eyes sting with the threat of tears. This can’t be how it ends. I can not bear another day in the arms of that vile murderer. How could I have been so close and not made it to the cove? I press my eyes tight together and debate risking it all to call upon Tisiphone whether I made it to the cove or not, but my voice is trapped, and my throat is dry.

“Come out, come out, wherever you are,” Maleficus calls from below, “Cause if I have to come and find you, I will not be forgiving…I will happily bring you back to his royal highness in PIECES!”

Tears start to roll down my cheeks at the thought of what he will do to me. Maleficus has always been the one to punish me for my attempts at running away. The tear drops hang off my chin for a moment and then drip off onto Alessa’s leaves. Maleficus turns his head up toward the treetops and begins to scan the branches. I think I just gave myself away. Terror grips me and I can’t bring myself to watch as he scans the trees for me. Squeezing my eyes together I imagine that if he does find and kill me, I can finally be reunited with Christos and Inesa. It would certainly be a better afterlife than life lived.

“There you are,” Maleficus purrs.

My heart sinks and my stomach twists with the threat of regurgitation.

“Why don’t you come on down now. You don’t want me to have to come up there after you.”

“Don’t move,” Alessa orders, “Trust me.”

My voice is still trapped in my throat, and my eyes are still tightknit together.

“Saoirse, you can’t make me disappear simply by closing your eyes,” He sings, “Open your eyes or when I get up there, I will tear them off so you can never close them again!”

My eyelids feel like cinderblocks as I painfully lift them open to look down at Alastor’s right-hand man, if one could even refer to him as a man. Part monster, he is the thing people refer to in their horror tales. A creature worthy of legends, one who has been known to devour the eyes of his enemies while they still live. A heartless demon who enjoys the screams of men, women, and children alike. Maleficus has been deemed a warrior, but anyone who knows him is well aware that he would kill without the guise of battle.

“There she is,” he feigns a smile that sends shivers up my spine, “Come down here like a good little witch and I promise I won’t kill you.”

“Don’t,” Alessa urges.

“He will kill me,” I whisper back.

“Trust me,” she retorts.

“I can’t,” I call down to Maleficus, my voicing cracking.

“Tsk, tsk, tsk,” Maleficus clicks at me, “I do enjoy our games, snakelet, but I promise, you won’t like the prize I have thought up for you. I’ve had too many days to come up with your punishment as it is. I’m afraid if I wait any longer, I may just kill you with whatever my foul mind comes up with, and then I would have to hear Alastor whine and cry over his dead little witch. Come down now before I lose my temper.”

“Don’t move, Saoirse,” Alessa says again.

“I’m stuck,” I try.

“Ok have it your way. I'll be up in just a minute to get you.”

A sadistic sharp toothed smile stretches the length of his face. His tight gray lips dripping with the thought of torturing me to death. I watch in terror as his long spindly, chalk-colored arms and legs dig into Alessa’s bark. His black claw shaped nails scratching their way up towards me, with nowhere to run and completely paralyzed I watch in horror as Maleficus slowly but stealthily creeps up most of Alessa’s trunk.

“Since this is going to be our last talk, snakelet, I’ll let you in on a secret. I know you think your family died because of Alastor’s little crush, but they always had to die,” he chuckles.

I stare down at him in confusion.

“Oh, I won’t be rude and leave you in suspense for too long, I know you’re not too bright, but did you ever wonder why you have that snake on your palm?” he smirks, still clawing his way over to me.

“I’ve had it for as long as I can remember,” I stammer, “It’s just a coven mark.”

“Oh, you stupid girl. Witches have marks. That however is something different entirely,” he points, “Marks don’t move and react to their witches. I never knew a supreme being that was so inadequate, so utterly useless. Well Alastor thinks you're harmless, just something pretty to keep. I know better though, sooner or later you’ll discover how to tap into that deep magic, and while Alastor sits up in his castle, he can't stop me from disposing of you like he should have done. I won't let you threaten everything we’ve built.”

I look down at my open palm and see the snake looking back at me, fangs drawn and eyes sparkling with wrath.

“Can you really help me?” I whisper.

The snake coils back and strikes out at me. My cheek stings as though it's on fire. Pressing my opposite hand to my cheek I can feel the warmth of my blood spread over my fingertips. Maleficus chuckles darkly, sending shivers up my spine. Drawing my attention back to the snake in my palm, it is back in a coiled position ready to strike. Placing my hand down against my thigh I bring my attention back to Maleficus.

“I never knew my family,” I confess.

“So sad little snake,” he shrugs, shooting me a half smile, “I guess no one will miss you when you’re gone.”

“Will anyone miss you when you’re gone?” I chide.

“Funny,” he quips.

“Christos always thought so.”

“Good thing I’m not him, or else I would be dead.”

Maleficus is now perched next to me, our noses mere inches apart, rage evident in each other’s gaze.

“I’m going to enjoy this,” he smiles.

“Me too,” I smile back.

Before Maleficus can say another word, I lift my hand off my thigh and place it firmly over his face. Loud shrieks come from under my hand as Maleficus’ arms begin to flail. His claws rake across my arms in defiance until he hooks my arms in the desired position. He then manages to twist his mouth over my wrist and clamp down with his jagged teeth. A blood curdling scream escapes my throat as I attempt to release my arms from his grip.

“Goddess Tisiphone, I beseech thee! Please help me. I beg of thee!” I cry out in desperation.

Maleficus moves his clawed hands and rips my hand free from his face before placing my arm back into his razored mouth. He sinks down into my flesh with all his might, and I swear the arm is about to be torn from my body. My eyes roll back a moment before refocusing on his face. The snake from my hands appears to be on Maleficus’ face, eating his eyes out. If he takes my arm at least I know I am the one responsible for having taken his eyes. Blood pours from his sockets as the small snake wriggles through the squishy flesh.

My body feels suspended for a moment, before a flash of blinding light engulfs everything around me. A strange warmth washes over me. I imagine my own blood rushing out of me as Maleficus rips me apart. The Fates surely have severed my string to the mortal world, and I can feel as though my soul is drifting off to meet my loved ones in the underworld.

“Saoirse, you have suffered enough, your heart’s desire is Mine to grant,” a soothing voice informs me.

The light is still all around me, warming my body to its core. Blinking against the intensity of the warm golden light I slowly take in the image of a female with long golden hair filled with serpents. A pure white gown flowing freely around an immaculate figure. Two enormous wings encompass the woman from behind with snakes slithering up and down her arms and legs. A face so fair and beautiful I could hardly put into words. This had to be Tisiphone, but how?

“These Woods are mine, you found Serpent Cove the moment you stepped foot into my Whispering Woods,” the goddess answered, “Your heart is pure, and your efforts have not been for nothing. You trusted my tree spirits with your life, and you will be rewarded.”

“Thank you, Goddess of Vengeance,” I cry, “Thank you for your mercy on me.”

“What is it you desire child of Medusa,” she replies.

“Medusa?” I question.

“Your mother,” Tisiphone replies, “You have yet to reach your full potential as a demi-god. I know this is new for you, but please. I will heal you and then grant you vengeance, you are worthy of my gift.”

“I want them to suffer at my hands. Grant me the full use of your powers to bring down King Alastor and his Kingdom. I want them to know who is responsible for their demise.”

“It is yours until the task is complete.”

With my body restored and the powers of a goddess I head for the Kingdom of Aqoseris.

“Alastor you are mine.”

Fantasy

About the Creator

Justine Seifert

Hope you enjoy what you find here :)

Always loved being creative. Former art student. Mom of one 🤍 Lover of whimsy and magic - Disney holds a special place in my heart!

Hopeless Romantic who also loves horror 🖤

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Reader insights

Outstanding

Excellent work. Looking forward to reading more!

Top insights

  1. Compelling and original writing

    Creative use of language & vocab

  2. Excellent storytelling

    Original narrative & well developed characters

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Comments (8)

  • Christy Munson2 months ago

    Congratulations on Top Story. :)

  • Novel Allen2 months ago

    We need some of that magical aid in modern day life, Medusa is one of my favorites. A well written story with the potential for follow on stories. Congrats.

  • Caroline Jane3 months ago

    Great story and very well written. I love that you brought Medusa in to it, it worked really well.

  • Blake Booth3 months ago

    HOLY SMOKES. You had me from your first sentence all the way to the end. This is by far the most entertaining piece I have red from this competition. Splendid job. Your lore was deep and meaningful, your character was pitiable and terrifying. Great job and good luck.

  • ROCK 3 months ago

    Mesmerizing! I just subscribed; this was a well earned Top Story!

  • Anna 3 months ago

    Congrats on Top Story!🥳🥳🥳

  • Ameer Bibi3 months ago

    Congratulations 🎉🎉 for top story that was a quite scary but very well written story

Justine SeifertWritten by Justine Seifert

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