March 2, 2024

 Today, I saw an icy, dead eye staring at me. It was ice blue and covered in frost. This entity, I knew, had come looking for me. Her icy appearance was an indication of being from the Land of Souls. Indeed, as I looked around, I realized I was back in that realm and this being before me appeared to be a horse. It was ghostly pale, blue-white, and its intestines were hanging out of its belly. Around it were ghostly scavengers, coyotes and ravens. The scavengers were ringed about a scene of carnage. The snow was covered in red blood, the only color besides white and blue in this realm.


Curious, I stepped forward to examine this circle of blood. Somehow, I knew that my own soul’s blood was required before anything could happen so I casually opened a small vein on my arm and let my blood drip out. It joined the blood of the others strewn across the ground.


Blackness arose around me then and, when it dissipated, I was standing in another realm that mirrored the one I had just left. This one was both darker and more colorful than the previous. The trees around me were completely black but before me was a summer glad illuminated by the golden light of dancing fireflies. I walked forward, entering the glad.


There was a creature in the glade with the fireflies. She appeared like a demonic hag with a pinched face and enormous fangs. Her body was ghostly blue-white like the colors of the Land of Souls. This indicated to me that she occupied at a least two realms, this one and the one I had just been in.


I stepped forward and her eyes lit up at the sight of me. Well, more precisely, her eyes lit up at the sight of my still dripping blood. She licked her lips and I invited her to drink from my blood. She did far more than that, though, commencing to devour my entire body or at least flaying the skin from it so that she could drink from the torrent of blood that gushed out.


Curiously, this experience didn’t move me. I wasn’t afraid and didn’t resist her. I know it sounds gruesome and I suppose it is but the reality is the Pearl Body cannot be harmed, it only changes form. So my body became first a pulpy mess but soon the power of the Black and the Red combined to transform my body into something far more powerful. Because of being devoured by the creature, I could now access the realm of the soul I’d been called to retrieve.


A vast black chasm opened before me and I reached inside, fishing around with my hand, to find the woman’s soul. At last, my fingers found hers and I drew her out of the chasm. She collapsed at my feet and I knelt down to help her up. Leaning against me for support, I led her out of this realm and back to the Land of Souls where her horse and the scavengers were waiting.


We didn’t linger after returning but instead I helped her across the boundary of blackness. We stumbled through, emerging at the Crossroads where the Woman in White was awaiting us. The horse and the scavengers followed behind us, losing their ghostly forms and becoming enfleshed. The woman, too, changed. Her body was no longer whitish blue. Her skin looked fully human and she wore clothing. Her clothes had been ripped apart at the belly and her skin was a rich tan. I don’t know for sure I suspect she was indigenous. Perhaps the entire experience was shaped by some indigenous lore that I’m ignorant of?


The Woman in White appeared indigenous as well, taking the form of a mature woman. She extended her hand and took the younger woman’s, leading her down the path and away from the Crossroads. The horse and carrion-eaters followed them and soon they had disappeared from view.


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