Henrietta Fauxord had visited the reverend that morning during a meeting of mothers and children. They requested the use of the church every Monday so that they could socialize and talk about, things... things about mothering he thought.
The children were darting about the pews playing tag and generally being told every hive seconds to stop and not to knock over anything. he hid from it all in much the same way the verger closed reality out and was reading his bible - placing a bookmark at each quotation he particularly thought would be interesting to discuss at the next service.
She was worried about some blue demon, a young girl in a short dress and pinafore who melted in water like sugar. He was sure he'd heard of this years and years back in his home village of Cruden Bay. that time it had been a baby, some sort of blue water baby that fell in from a bridge. A mother had watched at jumped in, not able to find the child under the water. At another time a man saw a beautiful siren of a woman, she beckoned him forward and fell in the water. Again he was unable to find her in the water. The pattern, it seemed was it was something the person would feel a connection to - want to save the demon. He'd followed every small story of demons in the villages he'd been in. Most were complete poppycock but some followed him like a curse. Like this blue girl.
he finished the meeting at lunch time, gave out some biscuits to the children as they left and too a walk to the warlock. He wasn't sure if the man really had powers of a supernatural kind, but he was a devout member of the congregation and seemed to be a calming figure when superstitions of the villagers ran high. And he seemed pleasant enough, for a man who claimed to have satanic powers he was quite anti-satanic. Which was good.
Gregory had taken to wearing his mother's cross after she died. Although it was a woman's piece of jewelry, he thought of it as piece of her, not just a piece of gold. He had threaded her wedding ring on the chain and hung the lot on his neck, tucked inside his clothes. At this time he lifted it from his collar and kissed the warm gold. he tucked it back in a knocked on the old man's door.
There was a soft thudding of feet and the door opened to the man who wore black robes."Good morning Gregory my boy. I've been expecting you. Nice to see you in the open, can't have you hiding at your house. please come in." The man spoke without any inflection for Greg to speak. He was a bit of an elder in the village so he didn't dare interrupt.
He came into the house, minding his head to some herbs and bells that were hanging from the ceiling as the old man did as he walked ahead him. "Would you like a cup of herbal tea? Gathered the herbs this very morning."
"Thank you very much. Erm, I've come to talk to you about something I'm not too sure about..."
"The blue child? See it, learned of it - I know plenty what do you want to know?"
"Erm... everything you can tell me."
The old man busied himself with making tea, strained it and passed a cracked but serviceable mug over to the reverend and he took a sip of it. It was tasty and sweet.
"Well I have a small volume on it but if you'd prefer it to be told orally."
"Much prefer." Greg sat down on a chair in the cramped kitchen, allowing Demrin the chair that was most accessible.
"Well it's a water nymph from all records. i noticed quite a few of the records from your home village Reverend Reid."
"Yes, that was one of the reasons I thought of you."
"I know - you're not the usual type to come to me. Anyway," he too a swig of tea from his own mug. "The girl, sometimes is a boy, depending on the individual, is a form of demon that tried to drown it's victims - trying to capture first their minds as quickly as possible and then taking their lives." There was a loud farting noise from the cupboard under the sink. He stopped and picked up a gnarled wooden cane - rapping it heavily on the cupboard. "Be quiet! I have a guest." The farting noises ceased and he continued. "Damn imp, keeps on getting in through the pipe and annoys the hell, I mean, annoys me. So, back to the water nymph. the nymph will appear to those it feels are weak enough to try and save it from the water. normally kind hearted souls who will, or have experienced great loss. I'd be wary Reverend."
He nodded to the 'warlock' and spoke quietly "So you've heard."
"Of course - your mother fixed all my socks in exchange for enough teas, herds and spices to cook with for nearly half a year. But there was a lot of socks that needed darning. She was a good woman. The funeral you gave was very fitting."
"You were there?"
"My boy, how couldn't I? Although I don't suppose you could pay attention to much. I hope your grief ends soon. I have a concoction somewhere that will help you sleep, shadowy demons aren't fun, I can tell you." he pulled his sleeve up and showed a raspy burn mark - much like the one from a rope. "The bugger, I mean the demon wasn't too hard to beat though." I pushed his sleeve back down and hurried to and from some from of larder and put a pinkly purple glass bottle stopped with a cork on the table.
"What is that? And how would you know about my dreams?"
"Those more perceptive of magics have all been getting the dreams."
"I'm a clergyman - not a warlock!"
"Yes, I know. You're perceptive to god - and with God comes angels and demons. The drink is harmless in itself, tastes of Turkish delight!" He chuckled. "Helps banish the bad dreams though, and for you I won't charge a thing."
The Reverend fished into his pocket and pulled from it a small silver coin. "Then accept this as a gift also." He got up and picked the bottle up.
Gregory walked to the door with Demrin and put the bottle inside his coat. As he left the house and turned to wave he thought. "What is Turkish Delight?"
"It's a rose flavored thing - and very tasty!"
He almost felt lighter having had some interaction with such a chipper man. He thought If he's as old as they say - he must have seen a lot of death - even experienced it. He walked by the river bank, watching the ducks.
"Won't you come with me?" He span round to come face to face with a beautiful woman. tall and elegantly dressed she seemed to flow. Her blue lips striking against white skin. "Please, I want you to come with me." and she dove into the water, seemingly invisible under the surface.
He fought the urge to follow her, physically shaking in his boots."No. Begone foul demon!" And he ran from the river. In hindsight it was stupid to walk by there, tempting fate. He soon found himself in the sanctity of the church. It was empty but for a few straggling mothers chatting. How long had he been? It felt like a few hours but these mothers were still on the same subjects.
"Did you forget your hat reverend?"
"How long have I been?"
"Not more than five minutes."
Five minutes! Just that! He was going crazy!