Dear Homins, have you heard the tale of the mystic ring?
It was an early morning as usual for Jaenne. It came with the job as a baker, to get up early in the morning and prepare the dough for the days baking. Her shop was not large, nor was it too small. One could say it would be just enough for one Homin to manage on their own. She had set it up not far off Crystabell and had made a few returning customers. She was quite liked and always with a friendly smile. Yet due to the recent swarming of the Kitins her shop had come to somewhat of a halt. It was due to the large amounts of damages that the Kitins had caused on the lands, buildings, crops etc so of course Homins had to spend their dappers in rebuilding. This meant that the need for baked items would descend until things would be more stable. But all in all things were manageable, but not for long it would seem.
The last week or so it seemed as things had went really bad, the prices for ingredients had increased and the customers became even more sparse. Something would have to happen soon or she would be forced to close the shop. She struggled by the day as usual with more careful planning of how much ingredients to use, how much of each pastry to bake and so on in order to keep things in a balance. But it was taking its toll indeed as the daily planning seemed to more and more overburden the joy of baking.
As she approached her little shop she felt something against the door briefly as it was opened. When she looked at the floor, she was surprised to see a letter lying there. For at first she had though that it might had been the carpet that had stuck under the door. She looked at the letter, there were no address nor sender on it. None at all to identify its origin. The only thing was the text “Perhaps this can turn your luck” on the front side of the letter. Perhaps it was some secret benefactor that wanted to just help her out? She carefully opened the letter only to find its contents to be a ring. It was a small ring, yet still beautiful and it shone of a bright-ish green light. Almost like the light you can see in the gasses forming over the goo. It may have been tinted towards the green, but it seemed to contain the entire spectrum.
Jaenna did not know whom may have left this wonderful gift, yet she found it too beautiful not to wear it and so she put it on her finger. Perhaps it was the cold metal that send a small rush through her finger, up her hand, and then down her spine. It had been a cold morning after all. But it somehow felt good to wear the ring so she left it on the finger and started with her daily chores. Most of the day had passed when she noticed something that was not usual, she had almost sold out her entire daily stock of pastry! She was very glad that this was a day when she had not had the need to toss away anything, but rather the opposite. The rest of the day she could spend cleaning up her little shop well and prepare for the coming morning.
Jaenna felt very optimistic for the coming day as she went to bed. And she slept quite well that night.
The day passed by quite well, in fact it turned out that Jaenna had to bake even more then usual this day as it seemed as the demand had somewhat increased. She happily obliged and kept the pastries coming as well as she could manage. Perhaps the downward spiral was now broken?
At the end of the second day Jaenna was really worn out, she had to make not one, but two, extra sets in order to keep up with the demand. She threw herself into the bed and closed her eyes.
At first she slept firmly, but after a little while she started to have dreams about someone screaming. She could not really see from where, or whom, the scream was originating from. Yet it was as it went straight to her heart. There were some flashing images in front of her, like a deja vu of an old forgotten memory. And then, suddenly everything was calm again and she could sleep tight once more.
The morning sun shined through the waters and into her apartment as Jaenna sat up and stretched her arms into the air. No time to waste, hopefully today will be a busy day too! She thought to herself as she got up. Only to find that her hands were soaked with blood! She screamed out as she saw it and instantly wondered what thad happened? She looked around in her apartment, everything was in the same order as when she had went to bed yesterday. Except for her bloodstained hands.
She quickly washed her hands clean and got ready to leave for the shop. She grabbed her boots and tied them on as she went outside. Things seemed as usual this morning too, perhaps it had all been just a bad dream, she thought as she entered the shop.
She soon forgot about the abrupt wake up this morning as it turned out to be yet another busy day with baking, wrapping, and more baking. At the end of the day Jaenna was very tired once again. Tired and content she crashed into her bed and went to sleep. This time it felt more real, it was almost as if she was watching a movie, the motions, the happenings, everything felt more real that it would have if it was just a dream. The contours and facial traits was clearer, easier to discern this time. And the scream, oh the screams was even worse than last night. And now she could hear some faint words also, combined with the screams. And they told her to stop, begged her to stop.
Jaenna woke up with a twitch, she had been dragged out of her nightmare when she had heard the cries to stop, as if someone had poured some nearly frozen cold water over her. She breathed deeply a few times before she dared opening her eyes.
She screamed once more when she saw her bloody hands.
What had happened? How come her hands were all bloody? What was going on? This time she quickly washed her hands and left her apartment with panic, this was very strange indeed. Yet as soon as she arrived at her shop things was as usual again, nothing had changed there. But still, both the blood on her hands and the recent nightmare made her remove the ring as it was the only thing that had changed in the last two days. She placed it on the shelf behind her in the shop and started on her daily chores.
Surely enough this day also turned out to be a great success and Jaenna arrived back home totally worn out from all the hard work. She drank a glass of Messab Milk before lying down in her bed. Just before she went to bed she noticed that she had forgotten to put the ring back on, that it was still lying in the shop. Nothing to worry about, she would just pick it up tomorrow. And she fell asleep.
This was the worst nightmare by far, this time she could see the face of the Homin that was screaming, begging it to stop. The voice was clear, the words was as strong as ever. There were no way she could not hear the begging. It was an awful and painful experience.
Once again Jaenna woke up with a twitch and in a great sweat. It felt as she had been up all night running, she felt totally worn out for some reason. She rubbed the sweat from her face and went to wash herself. As she looked in the mirror she noticed that he face was bloody! Then she looked at her hands and saw once more that they were covered in blood. But that was not all, on her finger was also the ring! How had it ended up there? Shouldn’t it be on the shelf in the shop? Quickly she washed off the blood and went towards the shop. Panic now held a firm grip of her mind and halfway to the shop she stopped, looked at the waters beneath the bridge. She took a deep breath and then threw the ring as far away as she could. She followed its orbit as it hit the water a fair bit away and gently sank towards the bottom. Perhaps this would get this strange thing away from her. She walked with quick steps towards the shop and opened it up for the day. Once more it was an eventful day with many customers and lots of work to be done. And once more Jaenny returned home tired to the bone and went to bed.
The dream was very intense, it was as the pain the screaming Homin was experiencing was also transferred to Jaenna, she screamed in her sleep, begged for it to stop. She could take it no more, it had to stop!
With a gasp she woke up early that morning. The sweat was dripping from her forehead and once more her hands were all covered in blood. She no longer screamed when she saw her hands, she just washed them off and went to the shop.
And the ring was back.
This day she was very very tired and a bit unfocused as she cut up a bag of flour dropping it on the floor. As she went into the storage room she heard a strange voice from somewhere. “The ring, it is the ring” was all that she could hear. But as she looked around there was no one there, the room and shop was all empty. This scared her quite a lot, yet she was too tired to react and so she fell asleep at the counter. About an hour later she was woken up by a customer whom bought the last of the pastries and wished her a good day. But before exiting through the door the Homin sad:
“Its terrible what has happened, don’t you think?”
“What has happened?” Jaenna asked.
“Have you not heard? They have found several Homins dead. Almost as if they had been torn apart” The Homin said. She shook her head a little as if she tried to remove the thoughts from her mind and managed to give somewhat of a smile before closing the door.
Jaenna decided that it was time to close the shop early today and go home to get some rest. Said and done and about an hour later she arrived in her apartment nearly three hours before she usually did. She barely managed to finish a glass of Messab milk as she was shaking so badly, and was so tired that she immediately fell asleep in her bed.
This night the dream was odd, there were some distant screams and weird noises only. Yet it felt as if she was talking a walk outside somewhere. Somehow the surroundings felt familiar to her, yet she could not place exactly where she was. But there was a fresh breeze and it seemed to soothe her mind. She was just walking around somewhere, it seems as there were houses and other buildings around her, yet she could not see them as clearly as they were in some sort of a blur. But still it was calm and restful. She looked around, no one was around it seemed, not even the sounds of the Ybers nor the Yubo’s was to be heard.
Jaenna woke up quite rested the next day. She felt as if she had been asleep for almost a week, yet it had only been a few extra hours more than usual. She stretched her hands into the air and went to the sink to wash her face. As she reached it she looked at her hands expecting to see them all red, but this morning it was different. Quite different indeed. This morning there was not a stain of blood to be found anywhere, she checked them carefully to be certain. But all she could see was that they were as spotless as when she went to bed. Perhaps the nightmares were over now? It was then she noticed something more peculiar; the ring was missing! It was no longer on her finger!
She could not but help to give out a shout of happiness when she saw that the ring was missing. Finally! It was over!
She sat down by the table and poured herself a large glass of Messab milk in order to celebrate that things was back to normal again. She sat there thinking about what had happened the last few days, what strain it had on her and how badly she had needed last nights rest. Suddenly she remembered the dream where she was walking somewhere. Why would her dreams suddenly change from bad nightmares to a calm walk along the beaches? It was then she remembered the last part of the dream. She had been walking somewhere where other Homins were living, walking silently among the houses and suddenly stopped by one of the doors, sat down and pushing something under it. Something like a parchment of some kind she thought. But what? And she could not remember at all where she had done this.
She looked at the other table in her apartment and noticed that the papers were not in the usual order, as if she had written something recently. She walked over to it and saw that there were some sings in the parchment so she grabbed her pen and gently rubbed on the paper in order to reveal what had been written.
With a gasp Jaenna backed off from the table almost pushing it over when she saw what she had written:
“Perhaps this can turn your luck”
This dear Homins is the tale of the mystic ring.