She is called many names; the wandering woman, mystery lady, the medicine woman, the mad woman of Katoke or the nuisance.
She always appeared in the neighbourhoods for a couple of weeks before the start of each season bearing numerous pots and bags of exotic plants. Each boiling pot served broths that cured various ailments and all that was required for any to work is faith.
Whenever she visited the poorer quarters, the inhabitant’s welcomed her presence. They would come bearing little gifts in exchange for helpings from her healing condiments, but the experience was the opposite at the more prestigious parts of town where the policing guards did their best to discourage the charlatan ‘as she was called.’
On various occasions, they ran her off the premises with a stern warning of arrest if she kept visiting but at dusk, these uppity members of high society went to the poor side of town to see her secretly.
Little stabs of jealousy struck Cody as he stood at the corner and watched Josh and Sam cycle their latest acquisition around the neighbourhood park with such glee,
He envied how they always got the latest and best toys and momentarily, he felt sad and angry that poverty kept his mama from buying any of such things for him. He was tired of their scrounging for food, for hand-me-downs and their broken television.
From past experience, he knew not to ask them if he could join them because they would only laugh and make fun of him. Last time when they were flying a kite and he came closer to watch, Sam made fun of his ill-fitting clothes and oversized trainers and he had walked away red in the face and ashamed.
He really wanted to fit in and he was tired of feeling out of place, but what could a ten-year old do? Maybe if his dad hadn’t died, they wouldn’t be so poor with his mother juggling several jobs. He hoped mama was right in saying that things would get better some day.
Tara hated herself for what she was doing, but her clogged mind just couldn’t think of any other way out of her problems.
Her meagre earnings were stretched beyond its capacity that to eat one meal a day was now a hurdle.
Sending money back home to the Philippines to assist her folks with the younger siblings and her dad’s medication took virtually everything.
With a pounding heart, she prayed for forgiveness in the silence of her heart, cast furtive looks around and quickly dipped her hands into the offering bag; the small clutch of cash felt like burning coals in her palm.
John Paul saw her through the CCTV and smiled to himself; what a golden opportunity, he had her where he wanted her.
As an adrenaline junkie, Ash was always in search of the next rush. He lived for daring feats and had literally done all sorts of daring stuff to the constant chagrin of his mother.
Diving off building tops was tame considering other adventures he had embarked on, but today was different. In response to the challenge of his long-standing competition Todd Kemp, it was a record-setting moment for his fastest free fall so far.
With safety harness all set up and onlookers gathered to cheer, he was about to step off the ledge, when the flash of his mothers repeated pleas echoed in his head.
She had warned him over the past several days not to engage in any dangerous attempts based on a recurring nightmare that she had, but he waved it off as one of her usual entreaties.
Shaking off the fleeting cold feet from hearing his mother’s voice in his head, he stepped off and tumbled down into a blackout. The last thing Ash remembered was the cacophony of voices and an insistent voice urgently cajoling him not to let go.
‘Don’t move!’ Ted ordered in a low tone, but Rita couldn’t help the terrified squeak that escaped her mouth when she followed his pointed gaze and saw the mean looking snake flicking its forked tongue repeatedly, poised to attack at the slightest provocation.
Rita despised creepy crawlies with a passion and snakes topped her chart.
Kaboom! Ted’s aim blew the snakes head off and as its writhing body fell to the ground Rita threw up violently.
She knew that not only would she have creepy nightmares for weeks to come, but she will not be going on a hike in the wild anytime soon.
Thank you, Kecia for the photo prompt and PJ for hosting.