FAIRY OF THE GRAVEYARD – Short Story Science Fiction
Baba Yaga was a fairy. Or rather she could say she used to be. Time was passing inexorably, and one day she realized that no one needs her and in fact she was unemployed. In the cruel capitalistic world employees preferred younger and more attractive women. Old fairy simply didn’t match the market needs. In fact, her friends had a job even being much older from her, but she found her natural way of life more noble-minded than using Botox injections just to look younger and have a job.
Some fellow fairies really exaggerated with newest cosmetology techniques. Of course, each one of them could use a simple magic illusion to look younger, but it would work only for someone without any magic abilities. Everyone who had any idea about magic would easily detect that the given fairy was using illusion spells, and if other fellow fairies did it they would never let such a fairy go. She would become a perfect subject for gossips for many weeks. Thus plastic surgery seemed to be the only way for an old fairy to keep her position on the market. Nevertheless, Baba Yaga didn’t want to hear about such solution.
She had her pride. Indeed, she came from a noble family of fairies. Her grandmother was the Fairy Godmother who had helped Cinderella herself! Her other ancestors also played crucial roles in many less known tales. Even though the Wicked Queen who oppressed Snow White was also cognate with Baba Yaga, that was the only witch in the whole family.
Sad, with her head down, Baba Yaga was walking down the street, dressed in a thick brown coat, which covered also her delicate wings. Her wand and magic books were inside her valise. The cold autumn weather aggravated her depression. She had no place to go. In the magic forest, the home of all fairies, she felt much unwanted, a stranger amidst her fairy mates, only seemingly friendly to her. Moreover, the fairy tales characters were not entitled to a pension.
Filled with melancholic mood, she was passing the graveyard. “If nobody wants me, then maybe I’ll rest here under the ground. No one will notice anyway.” She crossed the gate.
Several meters further she saw a young priest standing near the grave. He didn’t seem happy either. Once he spotted her, he said:
“Oh, dear! Can you imagine such a savagery and vandalism? I bet that in your days it would be impossible.”
Thanks for noticing my age, thought she. No wonder you don’t have a wife. Which one would stand such a ‘gentleman’?
She looked at the tombs. Indeed, someone profaned them.
“There must have been a satanic feast last night.” explained the priest. “Look at these dead cats, and crosses upside down. Horror!”
Baba Yaga suddenly revived. The scene truly impressed her.
“I would teach a lesson to such imbeciles!” shouted she. “Dumb stripling’s!”
“Would you?” asked the priest. “Very well! I hire you. You will guard the graveyard.”
Baba Yaga was shocked at his words, but a minute later she found it a good idea. After all, she had to earn money somehow.
“I am Father Matthew. The parish can also provide accommodation for you. The room adjacent to the chapel is pretty nice and warm, albeit not too big. And of course you will have a business mobile. Call the police in case of any night visitors.”
The priest showed her her room and they signed an agreement.
The first week nothing happened at night. The second week on Tuesday was a great storm over the graveyard. The sky was thundering terribly. Contours of leafless trees (it was autumn) illuminated by lightnings looked really spooky. Yet, the fairy wasn’t afraid at all. She felt comfortable and warm in her small room.
However, the next night she couldn’t sleep at all, even despite reading all the boring books she had. The air after the rain must still be fresh, she thought, and decided to go for a short walk. She took her coat and left. Occasionally she noticed her magic wand in the inner pocket. Normally it should have been in the valise, but she decided not to take off the coat, which she just took on, and soon left to breathe the fresh air.
The chill of the night was, indeed, somehow pleasant, and it was nice to breathe the humid air browsing among the graves.
Suddenly she saw a small fire in a distant part of the necropolis, and headed towards it. Having almost approached the source of the fire, she noticed several candles burning in the corners of a red two-meter-diameter pentagram. Three young men were standing around the satanic symbol, one of them holding a cat. Once she came another few steps closer, she noticed the cat held by the guy was bleeding.
The devil’s worshipper is using cat’s blood to make a red circle around the pentagram! thought she.
Two other guys held a cage with another cat, waiting to be sacrificed in the horrible ritual too.
The bitter smell of animal’s blood was mixed with delicate scent of melted candle wax and the fresh air. Baba Yaga felt anger burning in her heart.
“What are you doing, stupid kids!” shouted she.
Not waiting for an answer, she took her magic wand from the inner pocket of her coat. Without a word she sent three magic sparks towards the Satanists. Hit with magical bullets, they shouted and started running. Fairy was following them for a minute, but due to her poor physical condition in her old years she had no chance to catch them. Thus she sent the other three sparks with her wand which burned Satanists’ butts, and she returned to the site of the profanation.
It was too late to help the poor little cat, sacrificed by the devil’s servants; the animal was dead. She released another cat from the cage. The small, red, furry creature was looking at her with its big eyes exactly like in the scene from the “Shrek” movie. The cat seemed to understand that Baba Yaga had saved him from disgraceful death.
Soon Father Matthew came to the site of fairy’s battle with Satanists. He had been alarmed with screams during their retreat. He looked around and nodded his head.
“Great job, Baba Yaga! I knew I could count on you!” said he.
She smiled decently…
She named her cat Philemo, the name she found very special. Days were passing and the fairy was actually satisfied with her new life. Not only had she a faithful friend, the cat, which found Baba Yaga his saviour but she was also respected by the priest, her boss. Father Matthew mentioned her courage during his numerous sermons, and showed it as a good example to imitate. Nevertheless, the peak of her career was still to come…
One day she read an article in a newspaper about a series of mysterious deaths. Seven people had already been found died in similar circumstances. All seven had passed away from blood shortage, and the police together with the health service were examining if they were murdered or died for some strange disease.
Baba Yaga, however, had her suspect as soon as she had finished reading the article. She remembered meting him several times when he was returning to his grave in the morning. The tomb was in the lane of pretty old sepulchres.
The guy must have been a nobleman during his life, thought she. A count or something like that…
Of course, every time she met him, he was reprimanded for braking cemetery regulations.
“The first point says that the graveyard is a place of eternal rest for the dead. Thus, everyone who leaves his grave breaks this point.” she told him several times, but the count just nodded his head and didn’t mind to follow the rules. Bloated aristocrat!
One day she noticed Philemo, her cat, behaved somehow weird, so she took it for a walk… and of course met the count returning with his lips all red.
“Yes, it must be him! He’s responsible for this vampirism.” thought she in the end. “ Bloody Dracula!”
She told about her supposition to Father Matthew. His reaction was quick; he made one phone call and the exorcist arrived to deal with the situation. The police arrived soon, too.
The whole operation was quick. The priest and the exorcist opened the grave and the coffin, put an aspen stake in vampire’s heart and closed everything. The police officer made a report.
Indeed, the mysterious deaths ceased.
When three weeks passed without any victims, the police closed the case. The chief of the police department described the case solution to the mayor and the mayor decided to reward the fairy. She became the honourable citizen and received a medal. For taking part in revealing Dracula’s guilty Philemo was rewarded with a tasty liver dish…
Now Baba Yaga was so popular that everyone wanted to visit her and make a picture together. The media desired interviews. Crowds visited the cemetery, which the priest didn’t like much as they were disturbing the peace of the dead.
Nevertheless, despite her popularity the fairy always was able to find time to meet with ordinary people.
One day a farmer Joseph visited her with an odd problem. His favorite dog Azor, the friend of the whole family and the defender of the farm, had died.
“I am afraid I can do nothing now. This poor animal is simply dead.” said Baba Yaga.
“But you know the magic. I believe you can revive Azor!”
“Sir! This requires necromancy skills. My speciality is utterly different.”
“Oh dear! He was such a good animal. Always when a bunch of colleagues visited me, he was very happy, even though my wife definitely was not. Please, maybe there is at least a small chance…”
“Well… when I had been at school, I had attended the necromancy classes, but just for one semester. Nevertheless, my contract with Father Matthew doesn’t allow me to use black magic in my work.”
The farmer was neglecting, anyway. He described his relation with the dog and his affection to the animal. Finally he saw Philemo on the top of furnace, who just woke up. He decided to use the cat as his argument.
“How would you feel if your cat passed away? Wouldn’t you miss it? Besides, you are the fairy and you are about to do good deeds. Aren’t you?”
“Well… all right, but please mind that I have a little experience in the necromancy, so the ritual can simply not work.”
“Please, just do your best…”
As so did she. The farmer helped the fairy to prepare everything. They put the dog on the table in Baba Yaga’s room and surrounded it’s body with candles.
They started the ritual at night. It was full moon.
“I have read in my school handbook that the most efficient method of reviving a dead body is doctor Frankenstein’s. However, we don’t have enough voltage in this room, so I have to try classic spells.”
She fanned several pages of her book and found the proper incantation.
„The book is old and I cannot read some letters.” told fairy to farmer Joseph. ”Maybe you could have a look with your young eyes.”
„Hmm… Abra-cadabra or Adra-acabra… I’m not sure… I guess the second one.”
Fairy approached the dog.
„Adra-acabra” said she.
Flames of the candles gradually diminished and the wind was howling outside.
„Come on doggy. Stand up!” said she.
It thoudered once, then twice, and the body of the animal was shaking.
Something is wrong… thought fairy.
„Adra-acabra” she repeated.
The dog was trembling and his body was gradually transforming. It grew bigger and bigger. Suddenly it arose, but it didn’t look like a dog anymore.
“Oh dead! Oh no! Oh no! Oh no!” shouted Baba Yaga.” It was a wrong spell! The animal has transformed into a werewolf! I should have used the other spell!”
The werewolf howled. Baba Yaga was terrified, and so was the farmer.
The beast was coming closer and closer to them. Once the werewolf passed near the window, it felt the light of the full moon on its cheek. It looked at the moon and left the room, just like it heard some call.
Baba Yaga and the farmer were standing several more minutes without any move, paralysed with the fear.
Soon father Matthew came.
“Did you see it? Some beast just ran from the graveyard.”
He looked at the table and noticed the ritual. Quickly he put two and two together.
“Baba Yaga! So… it was you who called the beast, right? And what about our contract?” shouted he on the poor terrified old lady…
Fortunately the werewolf was gone from the town and inhabited the forest. When the government realized about it, the forest was surrounded with a tall fence, and the beast made no harm to the citizens.
Baba Yaga lost her job. Again she was unemployed. However, she had Philemo, her beloved cat, and he made her happy….