— Papi, raconte-moi l’histoire des baleines célestes, gardiennes des océans. Dis-moi comment elles sont arrivées et dis-moi pourquoi elles ont disparu.
— Encore ? Mais tu la connais... [+]
“Today,” begins the Night Witch, “you are made of wood and here is the country of Stone. Let me guide you home tomorrow, and for tonight you can stay at my place.”
She helps the Woodborn to stand up and they walk home together, silently. Under the dark night, the Night Witch is shining and powerful. She is afraid of no one and no one could ever hate her. Today is lost in his thoughts until he feels the warm hand of the Witch on his shoulder.
“Today, silent Today, will you say something about you? Or shall I cast a spell on you to make you talk?”
Today sneers and remains silent.
« Will you stop grinning your woody teeth and say something at once? I am the mightiest around here. You have nothing to be afraid of if I have decided to protect you. Please, say something.”
Today opens his mouth and a leafy voice starts resonating under the sky.
“Great Witch, please do not feel the need to cast any spell. I am cursed already too many times. My mind is shattered. My heart is collapsing. I am unable to find where my home is. I left the wood country hoping to find something new and refreshing. And here I am, in the land of Stone. I do not understand what is happening, neither what is this place. Everyone looks at me, yet I do not know if I see friends or foes. People from this country seem indestructible and fragile at the same time. I am lost and missing home. Yet, I might have found my place in this country far from everything I have ever known.”
The Night Witch tenderly looks inside Today’s lost soul. She sees darkness and anger. Also, shining sparks of hope which makes her decide to like him and to help him. She will guide him. His woody skin and leafy voice has seduced her. He is hard and soft, smart and lost.
“Dear Today, follow me. Let me help you calm this howl inside you. You will do fine and succeed.”
While listening to the soothing and warm voice of the Witch, Today is mesmerized by the profound glaze she has. She is one with the night and her power is limitless. He is split deep inside and his light has faded. He realises the Night Witch can merge his mind and body before doubt and fear catch him and eat him. Once peace will be found, he knows a new power is waiting for him. Physical and spiritual growth. He seems to be intensively thinking and out of reach. His skin reflects the darkness surrounding them and his movements have the tenderness of a fresh night breeze. The Night Witch gives him her personal name and asks him to sleep with her.
“It will heal you”
Today agrees and they spend the night together. As the sun rises, the Night Witch shows Today the safest place to stay.
“Dear Witch, will I see you again? My mind feels at peace, and I have stopped harassing myself with question. Please, let me be your lover once more.”
The Night Witch smiles and agrees before vanishing. Today remains alone and starts wondering. What if the Night Witch was all he ever wanted and needed? Would it mean his wanders are over? All left behind is past. The Night Witch goes back to her home and laughs at the happiness she felt with Today. She knows however, that each moment of joy is equal to moment of despair in time and intensity. If Today makes her feel great, he might also cut her in half, as days come after nights, grievance comes after bliss. It is in her power however to cure his miserable soul and she feels compelled to. She is the Night Witch and her talents cannot be matched. She wraps herself in her nocturnal cape, and joins Today the lonely.
“Greetings Woodborn” says the Night Witch. “I would like to invite you to listen to the sound of the ocean tonight. Sound is a good friend of mine, and we agreed to help each other. This is why Darkness and Sound are complementary. Now that we have reached the Ocean, listen. Each wave says something different. One is complaining about her day, while another is happy for hosting a couple of fish. If you pay attention further away, you can hear the next storm. It is one of those grave and deadly waves that drown everyone with their sadness. They are changing, depending on the weather, unstable, dangerous for others and despising themselves. If you continue to walk upon the path of self-loathing, you will become similar to them. You have a soul Today. Unlike those moaning waves, you still have control over yourself. You do not have to hate yourself, you do not have to eat yourself with suspicion. You have a divine piece inside you. I have one too. Everyone possesses the ability to talk with The Divine. Listen to me, stay with me, and you will be one. We can do great things if you let me help you. Allow me to plunge into your soul and your heart. Come and sleep with me. These remaining hurtful scars will disappear.”
Today stays quiet while taking her. He looks at the charming Night Witch, but his wooden heart refuses to beat anymore.
“I am Today and as such, unable to make any kind of promises. I am burned by the past and my leaves are dead. My eyes are ravished by your appearance but I feel guilt deep inside. I am Today and the future is forever unknown to me.”
“Today you are fooling yourself. You know in your core that I am everything you need and will need. Is not your heart at peace now? Is it raising anything but insignificant wonders? Will you gamble that because your hunger is quiet? Would you abandon that for a new era of perdition?”
The wooden fool stares at her. If she said the truth, he is dooming himself for eons. His twisted mind warps the truth around and convinced him that he is right. Pride takes over and he can swear he will be more than fine on his own. The Night Witch holds her tears.
“Hurtful man, you do not value what you will lose. Be gone and be happy. You are fed now, but hunger will come back and you may starve. Your mind is not at peace yet, and you already believe you are cured. Mistakes shall teach you, but I will pray for you to encounter the lesser.”
And the Night Witch disappears. Today is still full of confidence and chose to ignore what the magnetizing sorceress told him. He is Today who cannot be destroyed nor stopped. He is Today and no one can tell him that he is running towards his own doom. He was offered happiness and love but chose to refuse it. The alternative and glorious path The Night Witch opened for him is now lost. Today failed to open his heart. He realises that he could not understand his actions. He cannot stop wondering if he was afraid of the Night Witch’s love. Maybe he did not deserve such love. Maybe happiness is yet to come. Maybe he just missed it. Today feels his heart crackling.