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Cleanse your soul (standard:horror, 2634 words)
Author: Lev821Added: Oct 07 2022Views/Reads: 74/36Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
If you ever get a spiritual cleansing, never upset the shaman.

He really tried his best, but it was impossible. He just could not get
interested in the talks and lectures at the ‘Agricultural innovations 
for sustainable economic landscapes' conference, but afterwards there 
was drinks and a buffet, deep in Mexico City in one of its most 
upmarket hotels which was attached to the centre, so that was okay, but 
his wife loved it. She lapped the whole event up, and he was secretly 
glad that in a few hours time, he would board a plane back to England. 

The conference was over, people gave their speeches, their
presentations, and it was the first time Sheila Gretchen had been asked 
to give a talk. In the brochure her speech was titled: ‘Improved 
control-release pesticide formulations on Napier grass', and it seemed 
to have went well. A good turnout of 200 plus delegates, committee 
members and fellow professionals all seemed to lap it up. Some even 
stood and clapped at the end. 

She could have talked for a lot longer than the alotted one hour, her
husband in the front row trying his best to look interested in 
pesticides, organophosphates and iprodione. 

They both worked at a Basefield University, Sheila in Environmental
sciences and Mike, 41 in accounting. He looked like an accountant, or a 
history teacher. Short, squat, wore black mostly with a black 
moustache. So their paths barely crossed during work hours, and after 
11 years of marriage, they would soon welcome the patter of tiny feet, 
as Sheila, at 37, stocky build, taller than Mike with long wispy hair 
that no hairdresser could do much with, had found herself pregnant. 

Her thoughts had instantly gone to abortion, and panic, but soon the
idea took hold, and they decided to keep it, warming to the idea. 

So after five months her pregnant belly could not be hidden. There was
plenty of times she was congratulated, but she became rather paranoid 
about what she could and could not eat. What she could and could not 
do, but everything seemed fine. Next week there was an antenatal 
appointment, and all such appointments so far had been good. 

She and her husband had three hours before they would get a taxi to head
for the airport, and would say their goodbyes to some of the other 
conference attendees, put their luggage in the vehicle and head back to 

Until then, they were tourists, not travelling too far from the hotel.
They found themselves in the main square, Zocalo, which was a hub of 
activity, bordered with government buildings draped with the Mexican 
flag, a place where events and festivities were commonplace. Today 
seemed normal though, but there was still plenty going on. The air was 
punctuated by talking, the sound of shell-horns, and drumming. 

“Three hours”, said Sheila, looking at her watch, “before we head to the

“Yes,” said Mike, “I've enjoyed it”. Except the conference, he thought. 

So they wandered around a while, and saw many shamans spiritually
cleansing tourists. They were dressed for the occasion, with elaborate 
headdresses, jewellery and decorative garments. 

They would blow incense, rub them with rosemary leaves, blow shell-horns
as part of the cleansing. Then would be paid by donation. Pay nothing, 
or pay something. 

There was one beneath the shade of a tree with a queue of people ready
to step forward to have their soul cleaned. A cardboard sign propped up 
next to a little wicker bowl read in English: ‘Cleanse your soul'. 

Sheila shook her head at the queue. 

“Look at them,” she said. “Gullible fools ready to part with their

“Maybe they're just doing the tourist thing”, said Mike. “They might not
actually believe in it”. 

“I wouldn't give my money to a shark”, she said, “these are con-men,

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