The Mores

By Mark Coveny (Published 1-23-2010)

An only child born to loving parents, I had few duties. The only memories I have of childhood are of my father’s book collection. At fifteen, Colby More courted me. An attractive son of a blacksmith, we both enjoyed reading. On our wedding day, he gave me a book entitled “Magical Creatures”.

 After the marriage, we spent several days traveling to our new home. We finally pulled up to a vine covered stone building surrounded by moors. The house looked old, dirty and rundown. The plaque at the gate read: “Bog La More.”

“This is our new home. I know it’s not much now, but it’s got potential.” Colby said.

 “I was gonna name it Casa La More, which means House of More, but since it’s in a swamp I thought Bog La More would be funnier.” He said with a chuckle.

 Stunned to silence, I noticed this hovel did not even have a roof. I glimpsed a mangled fence through the thigh-high weeds. I cringed at the sight of the broken and dirty windows.

“This could be the house of our dreams, I just need to do some work to get it back ‘n shape.”

 “Um, yeah.” I responded halfheartedly.

Over the course of the next months, Colby repaired the building and I cleaned. With the doors and windows fixed, and the walls changing color, the shack became a home. I began to take time on literature. I dreamed about what the home could become. The excitement about our future grew within me again. After finishing the house, Colby started work as a blacksmith.

Colby’s business became lucrative, and he bought new books for me to read. The townsfolk asked me to teach their children, when they found out about my reading. The children loved my stories, and I felt needed and a useful member of the community. Life is better than I ever expected, and Colby is my soul mate.

 I hear rumors about a black dragon in the area, but Colby discounted them as superstition. I trusted him with my life and believed him utterly. I have never seen a dragon and refused to believe anything bad could happen to us.

 After nearly a year of marriage, I became pregnant, and the news elated me. I fantasized about being a mother and raising our child. I found out the baby is OK from a midwife. My life, at this point, is exceptional.

Life came crashing down on me one drizzly twilight when reality met fantasy. Colby bought some fireworks from a traveling merchant that day. When the sun began to fall, he shot them off to celebrate our future child. The loud explosions are not enjoyed by all.

 “They are splendid my love.” I said.

 “They were expensive, but worth it.” He replied.

 I smiled at him. I stroked my belly, thinking of our child. I had only seen fireworks a few times in my life. Father told me Gnomes made them, but I never met one. Then I heard something large coming through the forest. It woke me from pondering baby names. Colby scooped me up and took me inside.

 “What is that?”

 “I have no idea, but it’s big.” Colby said as he drew his bow and opened a window.

 Something twice the size of a wagon broke through the tree line. The ebony dragon advanced with its two powerful back legs and wings curled to its sides. The sight of it filled me with terror. It stopped to look at the clearing around our home and lifted its head. Its nostrils flared, and a foul stench overcame me as it rushed the house. Colby’s arrow hit the dragon in its right shoulder. The arrow barely penetrated the skin.

 I heard a deep intake of air. It snapped me out of my terror. I knew I would soon burn in the Dragon’s fire. I ran to the front of the house. It sprayed not fire, but acid. It blasted through the small window, slammed Colby in the back and pushed him on top of me. I could hear the dragon clawing at the window and roof of our stone home.

 Colby opened the front window. This gave me a clear view of his back. The acid had melted his shirt and skin. With the skin gone, I could see the bones and muscles on his back. The gruesome wounds on his back should have killed him. He turned, grabbed me off the floor and tossed me sailing into the front yard.

 “Run!” He yelled from the window.

 Paralyzed, I watched in horror as the dragon loomed over my home. Everything slowed down as the drake’s acid struck Colby. The acid flowed over him like thick green drops of water. The shower melted off his face. Caught in a soundless scream of agony, all I could see of him now is bones. I lay in horror as I watched my darling devoured by this giant winged serpent. He is gone, and I am left with a hole where my heart use to be. Everythings gone. . .

 I sobbed at the loss.

 I began to cry.

 I wailed when I understood he is gone, gone forever!

 I wailed my voice ragged.

 I wailed every time I relived his death, as he tried crying out to me.

 He’s gone.

 I wailed. I knew hunger and thirst and yet I wailed.

 The loss is too much, everything else seemed meaningless now. There is no world without Colby.

 I wailed as my mind looped through the good times, knowing that I would never experience them again.

 I wailed as I thought of all the work destroyed.

 I wailed that he is gone. Truly, permanently gone. Never again would I see his smile or feel his touch.

 I wailed at losing half my soul.

 My throat quit working and yet I still tried to continue. Without words, other than pure sorrow, my loss still needed out.

I have no notion how long I sat there replaying the final moments of his life over and over again. I tried to yell and scream, but my body would not comply. I put every ounce of my pain and suffering into my scream. Everything fell away but trying to make my voice work again. The sorrow pounded me for release.

 I felt time pass and my body transforming, still I concentrated on making my voice heard. I moved but not with my legs, my body is no longer human. The oddity of it broke my focus. I wandered to the house and realized change. Unaware of the passage of time, the yard is overgrown, the house covered in vines. I remembered the first time I looked upon this place.

 I moved to the point where he died. I looked down at the scarred stone and finally drained all my grief and pain. I sounded much louder and stronger that a human voice. The keening sound of my cry shattered the windows. Some part of my mind knew me now as a banshee – the mournful spirit foretelling death.

 I knew things. I knew how to cast magic. I knew I did not have milk to nurture my daughter and needed to find someone who did. About to give birth, my knowledge included the time of my pregnancy. The magic of how to mask my unborn child jumped to mind. I just needed to find a wet mother with a girl child to replace. I started looking.

 I searched for homes not protected with iron. I found a defenseless cottage. The spell I cast put their child in a form of stasis while mine could develop and strengthen. As I left, the loss of my child overwhelmed me. I wandered lost, unable to find my home.

 I heard sounds of merriment and waves of anger hit me.

 How could they be joyous? How dare them!

 I would make them pay.

 I entered the clearing and screamed at them. I would stop their happiness. I gave them all my mourning and anguish. My scream killed all ten of the fairies and turned them pure white.

 I did not mean to kill them, and the misery of it brought me back to thoughts of Colby. I became lost in my thoughts again. On autopilot, I headed back to where I lost everything. The place that defined me: Boglamore.


The basis for a tragedy is that life is unfair and unkind. There is neither justification or rationalization of the “why” when things like this happen. Haiti is an example of bad things happening to people for no reason.

When we look at the scared people it makes our hearts pour. We yearn for a reason, but there is nothing. Certainly there must be a cause and effect involved, we tell ourselves. As an atheist I don’t believe in Gods. For those of you who do, ask yourself, why would a benevolent being allow something like this to happen?

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