The Adventure of Igdryll the Drunken Gnome (Part 9)

          Igdryll had woken up at some point in time after drinking the elixir from the stone basin. He looked down to see his body lying in the brown, crispy cedar boughs. It was still. A corpse. The sight of this normally would have struck him in the heart except that he had no body now. He looked down at where he felt his hands should have been and there was nothing. He knelt down to touch his old body but felt nothing and nothing responded to his touch.
          “Where be you, Bornless Ones?” Igdryll waited. “Nameless Ones, you come to me now!”
          He collapsed on the ground. Nothing stirred. He cried. Howled. He resigned himself to the fact that he was dead and no longer had a place in the world. He waited some more. The Nameless Ones did not come back.
          Dawn broke. The sun slowly arced across the sky, set, and the moon returned. The cycle continued. Many times Igdryll tried to walk away from his body but it was as if he was attached to it by an invisible cord. The body began to rot. The eyes collapsed and sang into the sockets. The tongue became swollen. The body, likewise. White skin became grayish green, then dark and black. Bugs and worms came to call his body home. He attempted to shoo them away from time to time with no effect. It didn’t matter. He kept trying as there was nothing else to do with his time. The skin became oily and putrid, eventually sliding completely off the bones. A day came when nothing was left but a white, sinewy skeleton. Eventually, this disappeared into the roots and undergrowth.
          Igdryll lost track of how long he had wandered about the cluster of cedars. He had no way to make marks or keep track of anything so he gave up. From time to time, he would call out to the Nameless Ones but they never answered. Deer and other animals would pass by him but they didn’t see him.
          A day came when Igdryll sat, took a deep breath and tried to push out all of the disparate thoughts wandering within his head. He remembered that he had seen the Elder do this once, how long ago? Igdryll had asked him what he was doing but thought the answer ridiculous. He dismissed it until now when the chain of days threatened to drive him into madness. Now, Igdryll was willing to try anything to take his mind off of existing. He breathed and listened. The sun and moon crossed overhead several times, but Igdryll continued to sit and breath. Ages passed.
          “Igdryll,” a woman’s voice said.
          “Bornless One.”
          “It’s time.”
          “Yes. It is.”
          Idgryll opened his eyes. The sun hung hot and still overhead. The cedars swayed, their boughs whispering in the breeze. Igdryll looked at the spot where his body melted into the ground. A circle of red-capped toadstools marked the spot where his body once was. Igdryll closed his eyes again and the next thing he knew, he was waking up in his own bed.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s