Writing Challenge: July 16, 2018
Prompt: You were thrown into a volcano as a virgin sacrifice. They never expected you to climb back out again.
It was supposed to be an honor to my family- an acknowledgement of my value. I didn’t volunteer. I wasn’t asked. The village elders assumed I would be willing. They assumed I would be selfless enough to lay down my life for theirs.
They tossed me in with great ceremony. They dressed me in white and covered me in flowers. There was a great procession of music and dancing. They drugged me with heavy drink and led carried me on a gilded litter to my fate. I was blessed by both the high priest and the high priestess. I was sprinkled with sacred waters. Then, still dressed in white, still covered in flowers, still damp with sacred water, I was thrown into the rocky, fiery crevasse .
If my family cried, I couldn’t hear it. If my people felt guilty, I wouldn’t know. I know that no one ever expected to see me again. They never expected me to climb back out from the firey depths, But I did.
I don’t know what happened in the volcano. I can only recall hazy, drug induced visions of charred rocks and hot fire. I remember dark walls and glowing reds and oranges. I remember smothering heat then blackness. Then I remember waking up on the black, hardened lava at the based of the volcano. I don’t know how long I lay there. I don’t know how I escaped. I only know that somehow- I was alive.
When I walked back to my village the people stared in silence. I was kept at the temple as something between a prisoner and a goddess. The priests and priestess met and debated long into the night with the village elders. Finally, my people came to a conclusion to explain my survival. I was spared because I was unwilling and unworthy. Despite my protests- someone else would be sacrificed in my place.