Mara gets Cold

Bethany Jaine Bredeson
28 min readFeb 16, 2021

A story from the series: Folktales of the Twelves Dominions

Early in The Morning

Long suffering is one of the many fruits of the spirit. And, the crest of dawn can seem bleak and desolate and dry. When the body itself has little to offer the spirit by way of comfort it’s logical to turn to resources outside ones’ self. But few seek further outward than an evening snack. For most of us, our heartbeat is strong enough to carry us over the tumultuous seas of night into morning, but the last stretch can seem endless, like a dream that replaces reality; a persistent fear like an alarm chime from an apartment down the block where, apparently, no one seems to be residing at the moment: repetitive and meaningless.

But then, standing in the cold air that wafts off the lake, a boy’s voice from the house next door speaks while he jumps to see over the fence.

“Hey,” he says with delighted optimism. He jumps to look over the fence, again, “wanna be my friend?” Something about his pleasant disposition strikes a chord of mind; maybe, he likes his life.

“Yes, I will be your friend,” I speak, clinging my powder blue, towel textured bathrobe around my waist.

“Wanna come play at my house?” he asks with expectancy.

His house is probably better than my house. So, I say, “Yes, I would love to play at your house.”

“Come on,” he beacons with joy.

I’m a bit small to climb over fences. I’ve torn my skirt a couple times in previous attempts. And, wellies aren’t fit for climbing. So, I walk to the end of the fence before the yard dips into the lake water. There’s a patch of tall grass to conceal the land at the end of the fence, but I’m able to take an extended stride through the grass. And, using the fence as support, I push myself onto his yard. He meets me there and walks with me up to the house.

He asks, “Do you like basketball?”

“I don’t know. I’ve played ping pong before,” I say. He slides open the back door and welcomes me inside. I’m greeted by a wall of warmth. Brightness from the dining room on the left illuminates the light brown table as bright as though it were its own light source. The kitchen beyond the table is still dark. He slides the door closed behind me.

He explains, “Well, we have a ping pong table, but my Dad would have to help us set it up. He’s not awake, yet.”

Bethany Jaine Bredeson

Get started with me as I write a backdrop of fantasy short stories where everything is real: ghosts, monsters, angels, demons, and God's not a dillweed.