The Wish’s Brew

On Sundays, I respond to one writing prompt I’ve seen throughout the week.  This time, I chose K.R. Summers’s Dare to Write IV prompt – “Anything on Earth.”  I also was inspired by Aak Fictionspawn’s Witches Brew story, and I hope that this isn’t too much of a copy of that excellent work.

The witch held the spoon up and blew on it, cooling the brew from her cauldron.  She smiled, then glanced over to the child sitting on a stool nearby.  “Would you like some, sweetie?”

He swung his legs beneath the stool, neck scrunched up near the straps of his overalls.  The little chin wiggled up and down in a nod.

The witch held up the spoon, just far enough away from the little boy’s chubby face that he couldn’t quite lean forward and sip it.  “Now before you take a sip, know that this is a special brew.  If you whisper a wish over the spoon before you drink, it will grant that wish.”

His eyes fluttered, the pupils focused her crooked nose covered in warts.  “Anything?”

She smiled coyly.  “Anything.”

He pursed his lips and, after a second, whispered over the broth.  She gave him the spoon, and he drank it up. His face knotted up, the taste less than pleasant.

“Is everything alright?”

The little boy’s brows furrowed.  “You lied.  You told me it would grant a wish.”

“It does, and the bigger the wish, the more unpleasant the taste.  Would you like to tell me what you wished for?”

The boy stuck out a lip.  “I wished that you wouldn’t be so ugly.”

The witch put her spoon back in the broth, then picked the boy up off the stool.  She brushed off his overalls, then took one of his hands.  “That’s the kind of wish that doesn’t work immediately,” she said.  She drew the boy towards her door.  “You see, I’m already beautiful.  You simply have to wait for the brew to work on you, to convince you that I don’t need to change.”

As the witch opened the door and ushered him out, the little boy looked up at her.  “That was a waste of a wish.  Will you have more tomorrow?  Can I try again?”

The witch shook her head.  “No.  You can only find my house if you are lost, and tomorrow you would be trying to get here.  You had your chance, and your wish will one day be more powerful than you realize.  Don’t regret what you did, dearie.”  She patted him on the back, pushing him away from the house.  A long, bony finger pointed to a nearby colonial with blue siding and white trim.  “Now run along home.  Your mother will be wondering where you were.”

So the little boy left.  Thorns and forest closed back over the walkway, his wish granted but never forgotten.

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