Beccah Posted October 3, 2018 Share Posted October 3, 2018 Artwork Courtesy of Shannon Stamey @October Illustrations. MAGICKAL MEANINGS OF INGREDIENTS: APPLE ~ Love, healing, fertility, good luck , happiness, immortality, fortelling spells. RASPBERRY ~ Love inducing, aids in pregnancy discomforts, protection. Stamina, vigor. CHOCOLATE/COCOA ~ Lightens emotions, evokes feelings of love. VANILLA ~ Aphrodisiac, inspires happiness, playfulness, sexual arousal, lust, vitalizing. SUGAR ~ Attracts love, luck, sweetness and riches. Lust inducing, wishes granted. AMBER ~ Fertility, creativity, love, luck, riches. This Halloween we’ve fired up our cauldron to present you with a monstrously delicious concoction...black and blue raspberry and two types of caramel-y apples drowning in deep dark fudgy chocolate and swirled with sticky clouds of blue cotton candy...sinking into a dark amber swamp. Beware those tricky sugary sweet treats and the gnarly old trees who might be trying to tempt you! FYI - Gravenstein is a type of Apple! You see the sign at the side of the road: HOLIDAY APPLE HARVEST, TURN HERE decorated with apples engraved with faces, some spooky, some smiling. You think it would be nice to go pick some apples on such a beautifully golden Autumn day. The orchard seems rather small compared to others you have seen but the crisp scent is enticing as you exit your car and walk to the entrance, framed by a wooden gate carved with various symbols, some familiar and some unknown. A kindly old man greets you, accepts the entrance fee, and hands you a basket. “All we ask is that you keep to the main area here,” he indicates, pointing at rows of trees. “Don’t go up the hill, please. But it’s all you can pick!” Moving through the rows there seem to be so many types of apples: dark red, bright green, sunny yellow and various shades in between. Plus some which seem to resemble pumpkins, a sort of orange-gold. Your basket is getting heavy and you stop at the end of one of the rows, looking up at the hill and the large and gnarled tree at the top of it. A woman comes to stand beside you and gives you a friendly smile. “Having fun?” she asks. You nod and then her gaze follows yours to that solitary tree. “This orchard is so old no one alive knows how long ago it was planted. But that tree does have a legend about it. It produces exactly one apple a year.” “Only one? How can that be?” you ask. “It was an experiment,” she replies, then makes some kind of gesture with her hand in the direction of the tree. It seems to respond, its’ branches waving. But that was impossible, right? “There’s a botanist in these parts, he wanted to create an apple no one could resist, the perfect flavor between sweet and tart, flesh that was crunchy but also creamy, and a skin so beautiful you couldn’t resist the temptation to take a big bite.” “So who is this botanist, have I heard of him?” “Dr. von Gravenstein? Perhaps. More infamous than famous, if you know what I mean. Most folks around here consider him to be quite mad.” “Did he do it? Create the perfect apple?” “Oh yes, he grafted numerous varieties to produce the tree you see there. But there were...drawbacks.” The tree does seem creepy, certainly, its’ limbs twisted into torturous positions - looking as though it had risen from some infernal depths rather than sprouted from a normal grafting. “Such as?” “You wouldn’t believe me. No one is allowed to go up that hill. But if they do, well…” “So what happens to the apple, if no one picks it? Does it just die?” “Oh it never dies. But it does get picked, eventually.” “But -” You’re not sure what to say to such a weird statement. The wind picks up, the sun is getting low in the sky, and the shadows become frightening, somehow. You shiver, and wish you had remembered your sweater. “- there’s no fence around it, or a warning sign, or anything!” “It won’t allow us to stop people from getting close if they really want to.” You stand there, mouth open, trying to understand. “Care for some of our local favorite?” the old man asks, suddenly beside you, holding out a plate ringed with slices of apple. You take one and bite into it. The flesh is crisp but also somehow creamy, the taste almost candy-sweet but with just a touch of tartness, a tingling sour edge. As you eat the slice of apple the wind gusts again and in that moment you can see the lone apple on the tree, swinging on its’ branch into a shaft of sunlight. It glitters, seemingly all colors, it sparkles and you feel your mouth water beyond your immediate enjoyment of the apple itself. “This apple is wonderful,” you comment after you have tasted and chewed and swallowed. “Was it also created by Dr. von Gravenstein?” They nod, with faint smiles. “In a manner of speaking,” the old man tells you. “One year we were lucky enough to find a half-eaten apple from that tree. It had rolled down the hill. We took the seeds and planted them and they grew...better. We can pick those apples just fine. The trees are just...trees.” “What happens when no one tries to pick that apple?” you ask. “Oh someone always does,” replies the woman. “But I’d hate to think of what would happen if they didn’t.” They each take slices of apple and chew them thoughtfully as you all stare at the tree, its’ form made even more ominous by the light of the setting sun. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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