Gilead Rose and the Scarlet Dove | Verso.ink

Gilead Rose and the Scarlet Dove

Be careful what you wish for...

A Short Story

By Ella Zundel

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In a kingdom not too far away, with not too many people and not too many laws lay a village where everyone loved to do their own thing and live under no rules and no purpose.

This village was on the outskirts of the kingdom, and the King didn’t care at all for the people and wished that no one wanted him to.

Some say that the land was strange and uncivilized, lacking in proper laws and regular activities.

And though it was a carefree kind of kingdom, there was more to it then met the eye.

In the center of the village with no rules and no purpose was a tree. A large tree with strong branches and a thick trunk.

Dangling from the branches were what appeared to be white apples. They looked delicious and filling but grew so high in the tree that none could reach them to pick.

They did not go uneaten, however, because everyday at noon, a dove with scarlet feathers and a black beak would fly to the tree and eat a white apple.

The townsfolk of the village with no rules and no purpose took no heed to the dove’s recurring visits.

Except Gilead Rose.

He was determined to at least taste one of the white apples and would sit at the bottom of the tree, praying that at least one would fall.

He tried to coax the Scarlet Dove into bringing him an apple but the bird would simply ignore him and eat one itself.

Gilead grew angry with the bird, “Stupid bird, why are you so stubborn?” He would say.

The Scarlet Dove would ignore him again.

Days passed and Gilead’s desire for a white apple only grew more intense.

He began to threaten the Scarlet Dove, bribe it, try to give it some other fruit but the bird would only stare at him with black eyes, peck at an apple and fly off.

Finally, Gilead chose to climb the tree and pick one himself.

Yet, as he brought the fruit to his mouth, the Scarlet Dove appeared and knocked it from his hand with a cry.

Gilead’s anger simmered and he grabbed the bird and flung it to the earth, killing it instantly.

Again, he tried to taste the fruit when a voice stopped him, “No Gilead, do not eat of the curse!”

Gilead froze and cast a glance down to where he saw a girl with black eyes and a scarlet dress stood in a pile of red feathers that were settled like a blanket around her feet.

“Please,” her voice was gentle, but fearful, “I did the same and was transformed into a scarlet dove, cursed to eat of the white apple lest I die.”

Gilead let the apple fall from his hand and to the earth.

“You have freed me by death,” The Scarlet Dove, the girl smiled at him, and Gilead’s eyes widened.

And in that town with no rules and no purpose lying in a kingdom with not too many people and not too many laws, was a boy named Gilead Rose who saved a girl whom he knew as the Scarlet Dove, and from that day on, avoided the tree with the White Apples and the curse of feathers and black eyes.

And although there are no rules against it, you would do well to avoid it as well.

The End.

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About Ella Zundel

Ella Zundel started writing at the age of 7, and started reading much before then. Even today, she's more of a reader than a writer when it comes to finishing anything, but her desk and space are constantly filled with papers and notebooks stuffed with ideas and brainstorming.
She progressed in the work of words and is still coming up with ideas today, getting inspiration from numerous things like her friends, staying up late in the rain, sitting and staring into space, and, yes, pasta.
She lives in Missouri with her family, 5 cats, 1 dog (Who's fur she's allergic to) and a bunch of good-for-nothing chickens, who she talks to whenever she's sad.

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