Word(s): Ashes, Testament, Prospect
Word Count 492
Atlantis Lost Chapter 8
By Sharon Collins
I am returned from the Hanging Stones, the Stone-Henge, my brother’s testament to our drowned
heritage. Would that I had argued harder, my tragedy might have been averted. How we clashed on that
windswept plain dwarfed by the great circling mound of chalk and turf. Thunder and lightning were our
voices, booming desire and flashing reason. His desire ultimately overwhelming my reason, wearily I
acquiesced. The prospect of recreating the aqua and crystal beauty of our Oracle with Cymru Bluestone,
seemed to me, a fool’s fantasy. My sisterly doubts, however, did not daunt him.
During my three-year-wander among misty greens, purple gloamings, and deep blue mountain-shadows,
Brother had been busy. The henge was dug; the markers in place. All was set for the final stage, the
transport of the stones. For this he needed me. He needed me to reopen the conduit allowing him access
to each of my daughters’ voices – the conduit I closed in my madness after the loss of the Seven, the
horror of their hissing curses another reason I argued so vehemently against his plan. With the conduit
open, he could link Sapphire’s voice, twenty-days walk to the west and Moonstone’s in the heart of his
henge, creating a river of harmonic vibration. It would be upon this undulating current of song that he
would float the stones into place.
Consulting the omens, Brother divined the ferrying of stone should take place during the long dark of the
winter solstice. The auspicious coincidence of a full moon and my proximity, he explained, would
enhance Moonstone’s strength, necessary as she would provide not only the terminus for the river of
floating song, but also maneuver the stones into place. Tragically, the drawback of my distance from
Sapphire went unspoken . My heart hardens with hindsight and suspicion that he knew the terrible toll my
precious blue daughter would pay, yet told me not.
In the cold of the solstice midnight, Bother raised Moonstone into the crystalline light. Smiling at the
sight of her, aglow with the kiss of the moon, I unsealed the conduit. The dissonance was deafening.
Dirges, seven songs of death jangled against the contented melodies of Emerald and Amethyst. Hands
clutched to my ears, I muted each voice until only the thrum of Moonstone’s powerful baritone and
Sapphire’s tenuous tenor resonated inside my skull and against Brother’s palm laid to my forehead. With
the connection complete, like barges loosed from their moorings, the distant bluestones began to rise and
slip into the stream one after the other. All through the long dark we labored and with dawn, celebrated.
Satisfied, Brother released me. Raising the trilithons of local sandstone, he and Moonstone could manage
Sent on my way, I returned to discover the ashes of my brave darling, destroyed in the effort to float the
stones. Gathering each brittle fragment of bitter blue, all of Sapphire that remains, I prepare to journey
onward once again.