Saturday, February 01, 2014

Flash Fiction: A Recipe for Heartbreak

A Recipe for Heartbreak.

It's a small measure of hate. Half a shake of rosemary for all the years he strung you along. An ounce of his blood, a nice drop of wine from a organic place. Preservatives will mess with the spell-work.

Feel free to drink some of that wine while you're letting the start of the potion simmer.

Next comes the ingredients you'll actually have to go to the apothecary for. I recommend going before you drink the wine that's not going into the potion. Going after you've drunk it can land you in a jail cell, and all your hard work of the night before will be burnt away. If you're lucky, your anti fire charms are all strong and have been recently refreshed by a specialist practitioner.

Start again. The dragon tears will be the most expensive. Feel free to curse the fact that you didn't buy them before you had to post bail for your drunk and disorderly charge.

Start again. Maybe measure and line up your ingredients. Then, if you didn't get enough blood for a second shot, go out and find some more.

He did, after all, call you a crazy bitch, so feel free to go all out. From experience, I can recommend a good nose bleed to assist in collection. Act like you didn't mean it after you cast the spell, hold a tissue to his nose.

Burning the blood and collecting it's essence works just as well as the fresh stuff.

So start again. An ounce of blood, some preservative free wine. Let it bubble away until all the alcohol has faded, and then add the dragon tears. One drop for every time he said he loved you. If you can't remember how many times he lied, half a cup should do. Put half a cup in just to make sure. Next - apricot juice. Three slices of ginger - peal it with a spoon, you get more ginger, and you're less likely to cut yourself given how much alcohol you will have drunk by then.

Believe me. You'll regret it if you try and peal it with a knife. You blood in the potion will just cause swearing, and more drunken tears. Maybe a cracked tile in the kitchen from where you fling the pot at the wall. Maybe a burnt table top from where the potion washed out over the dirt ridden bench.

You probably haven't cleaned for a while by this stage. Or maybe you're one of those women who cleans to avoid things. Maybe you're a man with the same problem. Huh. I hadn't actually thought about that before now, but either way, be careful not to use a knife. You'll regret cutting yourself.

That man has already caused you enough pain without you adding to it. Believe me, I know.

Stir the potion once clockwise, twice counter clockwise. Recite the day you met, the day you first had sex, the day you fell in love. Burn the images of those days in your brain.

Let it simmer. Cry. It's okay to cry. Only you, the organic wine, and the potion will remember this.

Once you can smell the ginger, snap open three pods of cardamom, and chuck them in. Leave it after this - just turn it off, step back, and leave it to cool. Drink a hangover tonic while you wait for this. There'll be one in the basket by the door. Along with some chocolate, the bracelet your father made for you when he found out I was pregnant.

When you are sober, child, go back to the potion. Now you prick your finger. Add a drop of blood. Just one. Step back, pour the whole thing into a Tupperware container, and say these words:

"I mourn thee, and what could have been, here."

Then every day you wake up feeling like you've been ripped out from the inside, every day you wake up thinking of him, every day you wake up wishing you'd never met him, add a single drop of blood. Your pledge will bind you - whatever hate or grief you feel in your day will be stored away until you open up that Tupperware container.

It will lessen over time. It will get easier. And on the day the potion turns clear, take it, and offer it to him to drink.

This is not an unknown potion. He will know that you are healed. The whole world will know that he has betrayed you, because this only works when you are betrayed. They will also know that you are stronger than his betrayal. Take a flask, hand it to him in a public place, and walk away. Go home. Pour your own cup of the potion. Light a sandalwood candle. Take your friend up on their offer for a massage parlour's gift certificate. Drink your potion.

And live, my child. This is how I survived my one true love betraying me. It only works if that love is a man, these things are unfortunately gender specific (Your sex, however, will not matter. Odd that it works that way.)

If you turn out to be the type to fall in love with women though, I can not help, son or daughter of mine. You'll have to ask your father about that one. He had a similar potion to this that he used on me. Right after I handed this one to him.


Rebecca Douglass said...

Really nicely written. The tone is perfect.

Sian said...

Rebecca - I'm glad you enjoyed it :) Thanks for commenting

Anonymous said...

"You'll have to ask your father about that one. He had a similar potion to this that he used on me. Right after I handed this one to him."

I love that twist at the end.

Sian said...

@thereallydivinemissm - I was quite fond of it too. I feel I could have been subtler about it, but I wasn't sure how to get it across otherwise...

Thanks for reading though :)

AJ Bauers said...

Great job - I love how this started off with the humor, slowly became straight, and then ended on a serious tone. Thank you for sharing!

Sian said...

@AJ Bauers - my pleasure, thank you for reading :)

Anonymous said...

Just wanted to add my voice to the appreciation. The tone of this is so nice - the second person is very soothing. And, like the others mentioned, the twist ending is just stellar :)

Great read!

Sian said...

@jenniferkweston - I think second person can work quite well either when it's explicit(as in a letter or something to a specific "you"), or when it's barely noticeable (those pieces where you get about three quarters of the way through then go - hey, this is different some how, hand on...) Everything in between just sort of misses the mark, imo.

I'm glad you liked it. :)