The Vanquishing

Kara stood defiant; her thin, lanky body filling the door way.

“You can’t come in.”

“What?” Danielle couldn’t believe what she was hearing.

“You must be Kara. Get out of my way and tell your mother I’m here for her.

“She knows you are here. She isn’t going with you.”

Danielle took a step toward the young woman but had to stop short. Kara was standing just inside the door. ‘Smart girl,‘ she thought.

“Last chance. Go and fetch your mother.” Danielle flashed a practiced look of hate. Kara was unafraid.

“You can’t have her. Please leave now.” She did her best to look as intimidating as Danielle.

“You understand, young witch, I can tear this place apart? Is this something you want? Now bring your mother to me.”

Kara shook her head no. Danielle balled up her fists and began to build up her magic. She sent a blast of compressed air toward the woman but to no avail. Kara remained standing in the doorway. Apparently the woman was stronger than Danielle had given her credit for. She tried her spell again, this time she put all she had into moving the girl. Kara braced herself against the force of the demoness’s powerful spell. It was too much and she was forced to retreat back to the home’s central fireplace.

A thunderous sound echoed through the house as the front door’s granite threshold cracked and heaved out of the ground. Danielle stepped over the now useless stone and entered the girl’s house.

“You think you can use magic against me?”


Kara stepped back.

“You think I’d be bound by the archaic rules?”

“I thought –”

Danielle put up a hand to forestall any sniveling.

“I appreciate you trying to protect your momma, but I’m afraid you both will have to die. The world doesn’t need another witch and I can’t constantly be looking over my shoulder after all.”

Kara took another step back; the flames of the large kitchen fireplace singed the small hairs on her ankles. Danielle took a step forward and smiled wickedly. She shoved the girl into the flames.

The fire flared up and circled her – protecting her from the demon.

“Well, well, it appears I’ve underestimated you again.”

Danielle’s eyes glowed orange then red as she gathered all her power. She released it all at once at the young woman who stood unharmed as the flames carried the demon’s magic up the chimney.

“You asked if I thought you would be bound by the archaic rules but you didn’t let me answer.” Kara stepped out of the cleansing flames.

Danielle took a step back.

“This is not my mother’s home. This is my home and I am with child.”

Kara paused to see if her words were having their intended effect on the demon. They were. Danielle struggled to flee but found her feet frozen to the ground.

“You may be powerful demon, but the protectress of the hearth abides here and you, Danielle Avercoft, were not invited in.”

14 thoughts on “The Vanquishing

  1. They say the hearth is the heart of the home… and you illustrate this perfectly.

    I agree – this feels like a smaller window into a bigger piece. The role of daughter as protector, on two separate but interconnected levels

    Dialogue rich short stories are my favourite and you employ the dialogue well with the minimal use of direction to distract from the intensity of the power struggle building between the two women.

    I’d have liked to see an original take on the building of magic within… I remember from your NaNo piece you used colour to really excellent ends.

    What I think might be missing is the sensory nature of story – smell particularly… maybe the subtle smell of burning hair as the Kara gets closer to the fire (you mention the small hair singeing). I’m a big one for employing all five of the senses.

  2. Another fun piece. The spells are nice. As Jodi mentioned, could use more description, sure. But it’s good for flash, the strength lies within the dialogue and interaction here. And who doesn’t enjoy two women in a magic fight?

  3. Brilliant! Great story full of loads of symbolism and wonderful characters. This sort of thing is right up my street. I do hope there will be a continuation of the piece, I would love to read more. 🙂

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *