Robin was walking through the woods in the midnight hour in late September. Even though she was rushing, she didn’t know what it was that was calling her so intently and made her leave the crowd to follow the whispers of the forest. It has been just under an hour that she wandered off and she now didn’t know where she was, but she only knew where she was going, or at least she believed she knew.
She came across a pile of branches and trees entropically stacked on top of each other, and as she came close, she realised that these branches were not aimlessly placed there. They were hiding a cabin. Small, dark and mysterious.
The whispers grew louder and as they grew and grew, coming to a deafening frequency, the door of the cabin opened and the noise halted. A lady peered through the crack of the door. The witch in the woods. Everyone in the village was scared of her, called her names and kept their distance, except when they were in great need of her.
The witch in the woods walked away from the door, leaving it open, as if inviting Robin to enter into her haven. An assortment of herbs hanging from the ceiling as if the forest was alive in her cabin. A cauldron by the fire, a small bed by the wall, a small table with two chairs, and a cabinet. That’s all the witch’s cabin had.
“You looked for me” the witch said, breaking the silence filled with tension.
“Did I? I don’t know why I am here.”
“Then why don’t you let me be? Do you want medicine?”
“A babe you want to kill?”
“Then what?!” The witch said agitated, losing her patience. “Did you come here to insult me then? Because when civilians don’t need anything from a witch they insult her. They seek her one day and the next they spit in her face.”
“I don’t know why I am here. I was with the crowd, celebrating the last harvest of the year when I heard a whisper from the trees, asking me to follow them. I should probably go.” Robin said feeling confused
“Is it the first time you hear the whispers?”
“It happened before, but I ignored them.”
“My name is Raven”, the witch said giving up her name as if she was giving a fragile jewell to a stranger.
The witch walked towards her cabinet, pulled the first drawer and produced a black velvet pouch back, beautifully embroidered on the edges with black threads, forming floral patterns.
She puts her hand in the bag and took a stack of cards and fanned them on the table.
“You are here, because you were called by the spirits of the forest” she said putting her hand up to halt what Robin was about to say. “You will listen to me as you listened to the whispers of the forests, for I am speaking in their regard. They have a message for you and I must deliver it.
“You are not here by accident. Something more powerful, bigger than your control made you follow the whispers. You couldn’t control it, and you didn’t want to control. Your legs started walking without listening to you. You have the gift, and you were led here to learn how to use it.
“These are my most important tool, and it is the first tool you will master, for a witch who doesn’t master divination, will never reach her truest potential. Herbal medicine, spells and rituals are a part of the work, but when the witch can’t divine, she can’t learn to tap into the humming that dwells under her skin.”
“I think I know what you mean” Robin interrupted before managing to stop the words leaving her mouth, but continued nonetheless. “Sometimes I hear a voice speaking to me. It’s not loud, and it doesn’t speak in words or sentences, but it speaks.”
“And do you listen to that voice.”
“Most of the times, I don’t know what it’s trying to tell me.”
“Your divine potential is trying to reach you, but you ignore it. Unknowingly so, but you ignore it nonetheless. Listen to it, even when you don’t know what it says, follow its calling and you will receive the answers.” She pointed to the cards spread on the table. “Pick a card.”
Robin reached for the middle card when she received a slap on the hand by Raven.
“Not like that! Don’t just choose one for the sake of choosing. Listen to the voice and let it guide your hand.”
Robin took what the witch just told her and hovered over the cards. She hovered slowly from left to right, until her hand abruptly took itself to the right side of the fan. Her palm felt a cold sensation over those cards and a humming under her skin grew. She picked up the card.
A woman was illustrated on the card sitting on a throne with the crescent moon hovering over her head. Two pillars, one at each of her sides, one white and one black, and a wise expression dressed her facial features.
“What does it tell you?” The witch urged “But don’t just guess, listen to the voice. You don’t need to tell me, just listen to what it tells you… That’s it” Raven watching Robin intently, seeing her focus change, knowing that she entered a state where she was receiving messages from an intangible realm.
“This is your first lesson. Come back tomorrow around midday, when the sun is reigning in the sky. We will keep with your studies on listening to the voice, with or without the cards. For the cards are the witch’s tool, but her power is her intuition and what it tells her.”