An exquisite perfume wafted down the river and through the alleyways. It was a sweet scent, calming and mellow, like a song with a soft tone and a pretty melody, but it was compelling and Ava found herself following the scent to what she presumed was its source.
She soon found herself in an unfamiliar, old part of town where the roads crumbled beneath her and the walls left traces of age and abandonment on the sleeves of her arms. No-one was around, but the sun smiled warmly on her face and lit the decrepit alleyways with a pure light. Everything was beige, as if mummified by a volcano, but the light illuminated everything, giving the air a magical quality as it glistened before Ava’s eyes.
The scent never got stronger, yet she was sure that she was getting closer. There was a tug under her rib cage every time she looked over her shoulder, like an impatient child.
“Come to me, come to me, come to me,” it coaxed her heart and she obeyed happily, feet never wavering even as her eyes dawdled in wonder. Her eyes were as large as whole oceans and ******** with similar amounts of life as the water they so resembled.
The sun had turned the streets a dusky pink before Ava stopped. She found herself in front of a small gate. It didn’t have a lock or latch and was made of a long daisy chain. A dainty hand skimmed a finger along a petal and the chain unravelled, a path forming and leading to a house. The house itself was rather normal, if more well-kept than Ava had become used to seeing, but it was also nothing like ever house she had ever seen.
If Hansel and Gretel’s witch had a house made of gingerbread and sweets, then Ava supposed she too must have met her own witch, for the entire house never touched the floor, but was rather held up by twisting vines. The roof was overgrown with ivy- the poisonous kind- and forget-me-nots, but upon closer inspection one would find no bricks beneath the blanket of plants, and although the walls were simply rock, roses twisted down them and water turned the windows into waterfalls. Pink smoke swirled out of the chimney, and as Ava ambled down the path, she could see into the house, for there was no door.
No, the front of the house did not feature a door, but rather a rose-tinged glow, behind which a figure could be seen, nothing more than a silhouette. In the person’s hand, was what Ava assumed was a rose, but could not have been any ordinary rose because one second it was there, and the next Ava was holding it in her hand.
“Did you find what you were looking for?” asked the silhouette, hands now empty.
“I wasn’t looking for anything,” murmured Ava, unable to wrench her attention away from the rose. A glimpse of white peeked out from between her lips as they turned up at the ends, cheeks aching from the unfamiliar movement.
Content, the silhouette retreated back into the house.