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The Luring Melody

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The Luring Melody

 

Lotor was lured into the forest by something unknown in his gut, urging him to stray from his path and venture into the purple mist.

 

He’d heard stories of this place, that men [and the occasional woman] who ventured into the mysterious woods never returned. That fact kept playing on repeat in his mind with every single step he took off the path. It was an inhospitable place, and filled those who walked through it with fear. Only shadows could be seen through the purple mist, shadows of beautifully horrifying things. If he did not know this was a forest, he would have suspected that Hell itself was found here.

 

Dead grass and other forest decay crunched under his feet with every step he took. But as much as his head screamed at him to stop, to turn around and leave this place, his feet wouldn’t get the memo. And even if he did turn back, he had a feeling his heart would stop him and set him on the forbidden path again.

 

For whatever reason, he felt a pull, but towards what he did not know. But a pull nonetheless. He was a curious man, he could admit that, and he was curious to see where the singing was coming from.

 

As soon as he realized someone was singing, he paused. He hadn’t noticed that until just then, but, someone was singing, a beautiful enchanting ode that inspired yet frightened him. It was faint when he entered the forest, but it grew in volume with every step he took further into the mist.

 

Lotor kept pushing forwards, looking for the source of the voice. It seemed to be coming from all around him, as if from the purple mist itself. He couldn’t see far in front of him, perhaps only a few feet. What he could see was dense shrubbery and moss, hindering his sight of the forest floor.

 

Perhaps that was for the best.

 

After a while, the mist started to thin ahead of him, turning from purple to lilac, and finally, the voice appeared to be getting louder. With renewed energy, he launched over a fallen tree, and was met with a wondrous sight.

 

A woman stood in the middle of a clearing with her back to him, singing as though she had no idea he was there. The mist was thinnest around her, where light shone in through the trees above, and it gave her almost a pinky-golden halo. Her white hair shone like starlight, and the long flowy dress she wore looked almost like mist itself.

 

Lotor couldn’t bring air into his lungs at the sight of her. She was beautiful, divine, ethereal.

 

Suddenly, she turned to face him, her song coming to an abrupt halt as she realized she wasn’t alone. And if Lotor was struck by her beauty from behind, all of the air crashed back into his lungs by her eyes alone when their gazes met across the meadow.

 

Blue, as bright as sapphires, were encased by full black eyelashes. They had a slight hint of pink in the light, which struck him nearly breathless again when he noticed. Beautiful brown skin and wonderfully painted lips completed her beauty, and Lotor was again struck by how beautiful she was. Her pretty mouth opened slightly in shock, before she smiled at him.

 

When she smiled, his feet started moving again, taking him into the clearing to get closer to her. He wasn’t even aware of it until they stood just a few feet apart.

 

“Hello, traveler,” she spoke, her voice reminding him of soft dew on a juniberry’s petal. “Why don’t you rest here? I’ll sing a song, just for you.” She proffered her hand out for him.

 

Lotor couldn’t have suggested a better idea. With a smile, he nodded and took her hand, letting her lead him wherever she wished to.

 

She guided them to the other side of the clearing, where a large tree stood tall and proud. Carved into the trunk was a decent-sized hole filled with blankets and pillows, perfect for two people to sit. She settled down first, and when she looked up at him with her big blue eyes, Lotor knew he was helpless to resist anything she wanted of him.

 

“Sit with me?” she asked.

 

“Of course, my dear.” He sat down beside her, careful to keep their hands linked. His other hand he used to caress the back of hers, not wanting to tear his eyes from hers for even a second. He could get lost in them and lose himself as a happy man.

 

Then, she started to sing. She sang of how lonely she’d been until he stumbled upon her, how long her nights and days were, singing with nobody to hear her voice. But now that he was here, if he’d stay with her for a while, just for a moment, she’d never forget him.

 

As her song trailed off, she leaned in, her eyes slipping closed as she pressed her violet lips to his.

 

Lotor couldn’t help but kiss back. The way her warm lips moved against his made his insides melt. He was helpless against her. Her hand in his tightened slightly, seeking comfort, so he gave it gladly. His free hand, he trailed up to cup her cheek, letting his thumb run over the blush there.

 

With a small gasp, he pulled back slightly, surprised to find that his eyes had closed while they kissed. Hers were still closed as well, but they fluttered open slowly once they parted. “You’re beautiful,” he whispered reverently, his thumb trailing down to the seal of her lips. “So beautiful, my dear. But, alas, I do not know your name.”

 

Her blue eyes widened at the statement. “My name?” She asked, sounding surprised. “You wish to know my name?”

 

“Of course.”

 

She looked away, out to the clearing like she was trying to decide something. “Nobody’s ever asked me that before,” she admitted quietly.

 

He was surprised by that answer. “Do you come across many people here?”

 

Her lips plumped out slightly as she pursed them, before answering with a noncommittal hum.

 

“Well,” Lotor said, “they’re missing out on such a valuable piece of information. Who wouldn’t want to know your name, my dear? I’m sure it’s a beautiful name fit for such a beautiful young woman.”

 

At that, she turned back towards him again, her eyes shining brighter than any star. “My name… Is Allura.”

 

“Allura,” Lotor said reverently, letting the name roll off of his tongue. “Allura. I was right; a beautiful name for a beautiful woman.”

 

Allura smiled brightly at that, and giggled sweetly. “Thank you, kind sir. And, your name?”

 

“Lotor.”

 

“Lotor.” Allura repeated, looking him up and down as she said it. “A handsome name. It suits you.”

 

“Why, thank you.”

 

She ran a purple-coloured nail lightly down his front, watching how it caught each ripple of cloth on the way. “There’s power in a name, you know.” She twisted their linked hands so Lotor’s was on top. “Nobody alive knows mine.”

 

Lotor smiled at her, and let his hand fall down to rest against her neck. “But, I do.”

 

“You’re right,” she lifted her gaze to his again, pinning him with her blue stare, “you do.”

 

Warning bells went off in his head at that, but when she smiled that sweet smile at him, all his worries disappeared.

 

“Tell me,” she began, and brought her free hand up to cup his cheek, mirroring what he did to her only moments ago. “If I asked you to stay a little longer… Would you?”

 

Lotor nodded fervently. “Yes, of course.”

 

“And… If I asked you to stay forever, would you?”

 

Forever. That sounded like a dream come true. “I’d love to.” He swiftly agreed. “But… Nobody lives forever.”

 

She giggled at that, as if he said the silliest thing in the world. Perhaps he did. “This is the purple forest,” she explained, gesturing outwards to the rest of the wood outside of their little world in the tree with a sweep of her hand. “My dear, anything is possible.”