Blood, Fire and Gems

10.05.2019

"But where is our Bonnie Prince today?" I posed a rhetorical question. "I am Bonnie Prince Charlie! You are Bonnie Prince Charlie! We are Bonnie Prince Charlie!" I exclaimed. The crowd of my followers cheered and applauded. I was so glad to see them gather here again, the modern supporters of the Jacobite cause. Their presence meant to me that even now, 200 years from that damned battle at Culloden moor, there were still many, who wished for a Scot on the throne and the independency granted by that. It meant that the cause might not be doomed, that all my efforts were meaningful for masses across the nation...

Still, what their presence at my rally certainly did not mean, was any promise of actual help to the cause. Despite seeming to be eager nationalists then, I was positive that in the moments after the rally, they would gladly return to their homes and families, and go on living the life they had before. And with Gillian Edgars dissapearing without a trace, they were likely to forgot about her completely, they would not bother looking for her. Actually, who would? Who would look for me exactly at the right place and time? I thought, as I raised my hand, shouting "Scotland!"

After the rally, everything went as usual - having photographs taken, handing out the pamphlets - until the lass turned up. As soon as I caught a glimpse of her, I knew that she was a new soul, as I had never seen her before. Surprisingly, she started to ask about King James IV., Queen Anne and the whole cause. She was unlike any other of my followers - they just took notes and applauded at the end of my speech every day, while she raised questions and investigated. I thought, or I hoped, that such people might be the first step towards a change. After all, I was just like her in terms of this... I pondered over the meeting a long time after I handed her a pamphlet about the next rally and bid her goodbye, seeing her leave with the Scottish lad that looked so strangely familiar...

An hour later, I had already set out on my way home to make the necessary arrangement. As I supposed, old Greggy was already half-dead missing me, so it was not difficult to persuade him to join me for a drive tonight. He would walk across half of the world for me, I was sure. The thought of the purpose why I needed him now crossed my mind. I did not find it pleasurable, still it had to be done. Blood is a necessary element.

Upon this, I remembered my notes. I looked for them, unsuccesfully. I did not mind, though, as I had memorised all the crucial facts. Also, there was no more research to be done - I knew the place with the standing stones very well, and harbored for any information I could obtain from Fiona, the caller. And, most importantly, I knew for sure that today was the eve of Beltane, a Fire feast celebrated since the ancient eras, and one of the certain times one can pass through the time portal at Craigh na Dun...

After visiting home, I went back to the National Institute of Scotland and delivered another speech. Unbeknownst to the people, it was my final goodbye to them. Once I achieved my goal, they would no longer know the world as they did before. Nor will they know any Gillian Edgars. I do not intend to return, regardless of the outcome of my efforts. Of course, I admitted the chance of a  failure, or getting killed somewhere in the chaos of history, but I kept telling myself to do my best in attempts to restore Charles Eduard Stuart, no matter what it took.

After the rally, I visited a local pub to get some refreshment before the whole ordeal. I was surprised to find the lass I had met earlier, alongside the same Scot. We chatted a bit together. As a farewell, feeling the urge to do so, I advised her to keep asking the hard questions.

Having already changed my clothes in order to fit into the 18th century and checked whether I have my bracelet with a few gems, I waited for Greg to appear in front of the Institute. I was sure he would come. He did. In order to avoid raising any suspicion, I kissed him affectionally, before I joined him in the car, the petrol and the matches hidden safely in a secret pocket of my skirt. At my suggestion, he turned the car and headed out of the city, towards the place called Craigh na Dun, as there is something I wanted to show him, or at least I told him so.

Having parked the car, we walked up the hill. The night had already fallen. There was not anyone to be seen in the darkness, I chose carefully the time when even the druids were not there, though it was the eve of Beltane...

When we reached the top of the hill with the stones, I examined them, but carefully avoided touching them, For a moment, I forgot about Greg completely, until he suddenly asked what exactly were we doing here. Not being able to tell him anything he would understand, I decided that the time has come.I picked a stone from the ground and hit Greg into the forehead, knocking him unconscious. He collapsed to the ground. I took out the bottle of petrol and doused him in it. Not that he would need it, I thought, he was probably soaked with alcohol already, but just to be sure...

All of a sudden, I thought I heard an unknown voice calling my name, but I put it to imagination. I took one of the matches and lit it, then I threw it at his body, lying in front of me, setting it alight.

Two human figures appeared from the darkness. It was the Scot I had stumbled upon a few times today, and the lass, whom he pushed back. If he tried to stop me, I would kill him instantly, but he did not attempt anything. He just stood there and stared at me, as I hurled myself to the cleft stone. In the last moment, I turned around and looked him in the face, lit with the blazing fire that consumed Greg's body, and met his eyes. Then I laid my palm on the menhir, and everything vanished into darkness.  

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