#MLMM — Casa Vicens

casa vicens

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Mindlovemisery’s Menagerie asked us to pick a word from each of the categories and write a story about them. I did not pick these words; they picked themselves and wrote the story:

Secretary, Bitter Lime, Bergamott, Helix, Photograph

One of the perks of being Director of a large library system is that Jenny was offered myriad opportunities for conferences, trainings, etc. As the district her system was found in was one of the wealthier, there was some room in the budget for these sometimes valuable, but usually exotic or otherwise entertaining excursions. As her practical organizational prowess had saved the district many thousands of dollars and from ever having to do any cuts in staff and programming, Jenny was denied little she asked for in her position.

When Jenny opened the mailed brochure for the Spanish excursion to Barcelona’s Biblioteca de Catalunya, and that participants would be lodged at the Gaudi-designed private home of Casa Vicens, her heart pounded yes-yes-yes. From the moment her administrative assistant made the registration and plane reservations, the air of excitement and anticipation was thick.

Jenny was greeted at the airport by Benicio, a dignified looking driver, tall, in his 50’s, silver-haired, in a custom-tailored suit, who loaded her luggage into the trunk of the classic, but mint condition Volvo. The conference didn’t begin until the morning, so Benicio drove her straight to the Casa.

As they approached the driveway, she was at once struck by the heavy iron gate, which was intricately wrought into a shark-jawed dragon whose gaping mouth was full of bitter lime colored roses. As the Volvo glided past the gate, Jenny’s nostrils were assailed by the heavy scent of bergamott, lime, and roses. She inhaled the mesmerizing aroma as if she were fighting for air, immediately feeling drowsy.

Benicio unloaded her bags and she followed him as he carried them up the most magnificent winding steps she’d ever seen. Alternating blocks of pink granite and black marble formed an ascending expanding helix, where the smaller circles at the base added disorientation to her drowsiness. Although she should have been wow-ed at the entrance hall, she was focused on her equilibrium and alertness. The ever-attentive Benicio suggested he take her directly to her room to freshen up, to which she quickly assented.

Her room was on the third floor, where the later-installed, but hidden, elevator lifted them. As they walked down the hallway, which seemed to undulate like the ribcage of some great beast, Jenny noticed the row of photographs arranged near the door they were approaching. The center photograph, framed with a wood Jenny could not identify, was of a woman with the most extraordinary eyes she had ever seen. The black and white photograph could not have done them justice, but the intensity of them, and the fact that they were staring directly at her, was unnerving. As she walked under the photo to go into the room, she looked up and could have sworn the woman was watching her enter.

Benicio placed the suitcases near the ornately carved secretary, which was in the corner near the heavily draped window. He stated that this was Senora Vicen’s bedroom when the house was originally built. Indicating that dinner was at six (two hours away), he bowed and left while pulling the door shut.

Jenny walked over to her bags and again was assailed by the heavy scent of bergamott, lime, and roses. Looking from side to side, she saw no flowers; however, upon the secretary was a small painting of the same woman that was in the photo in the hall. The painting was in bright colors, and the woman had the most captivating smile. She was smiling at Jenny. Jenny was sure of it.

Again she felt groggy and decided to take a brief nap. Setting her phone alarm for an hour later, she fell back onto the bed, fully clothed, and fell instantly asleep.

Her eyes had barely closed when she felt gentle fingers tracing up and down her right arm. She heard a soft female voice singing a tune she could not place but sounded so familiar. Lips soon brushed her cheek and she opened her eyes. It was Senora Vicens! She was so much lovelier alive than any photo or painting could be. She was dressed in bitter lime chiffon . Her eyes were a stark blue porcelain and her hair was mahogany, against the palest skin Jenny had ever seen.

She took Jenny’s hand and lead her to the window, then opened it onto the balcony. As they walked out on the balcony, Jenny felt a sharp push from behind. She tumbled over the marble railing, falling….

Jenny woke up with a scream lodged in her throat. Slapping her face over and over to wake up, she saw that the alarm had failed to waken her and it was 20 minutes until dinner. She quickly freshened up and made it just in time to be seated in the magnificent dining hall of Casa Vicens.

She was seated next to an older lady, a relative of the family, who thankfully spoke English. The Senora told Jenny some of the history of Casa Vicens, which spurred Jenny to ask what she knew about the Primera Senora Vicens. The older woman got a strange look on her face and said, she met an unfortunate end in 1898, the mystery of which had never been solved. The house staff went out front one morning and found Senora Vicens laying lifeless under her third floor bedroom window.

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26 Comments Add yours

  1. Jules says:

    It is in those vivid dreams we get clues to others lives…
    I’m not sure if I would have gone straight back home after dinner or asked for a different room at least ๐Ÿ˜‰

    And enjoyable read. Thank you.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      I know what you mean. Glad you enjoyed the story.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. Oh I loved it Lisa! ๐Ÿ™‚ Dreams can be really scary, cant they?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      For Jenny they were. I think Senora Vicens was trying to communicate what really happened to her….

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Oh absolutely she was! Cant wait foer the next installment ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 2 people

        1. msjadeli says:

          Dang girlfriend, conference is over and she is back home at her library. Maybe she’ll go on some other interesting trainings and I can tell the tales…

          Liked by 2 people

          1. You should!!! LOL ๐Ÿคฃ

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Sadje says:

    Oooh, this is a bit scary but wonderful.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      Glad you were scared but not too scared ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Sadje says:

        No, intriguing story.

        Liked by 1 person

  4. That was an intriguing story, great job Li.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you. I wanted to write a story involving Barcelona and Gaudi ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      1. It was kind of a follow up to your architecture post from the other day.

        Liked by 1 person

        1. msjadeli says:

          the more i write about it the more real it will become for me to go there…

          Liked by 1 person

  5. pvcann says:

    Brilliant – nicely paced and with such intrigue

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      Thank you very much for the feedback.

      Liked by 1 person

  6. aguycalledbloke says:

    Hey Li, l have just nominated you for The Liebster Award ๐Ÿ™‚

    https://aguycalledbloke.blog/2019/01/07/liebster-award-nomination-12/

    Liked by 1 person

      1. aguycalledbloke says:

        Pleasure Li ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

  7. iScriblr says:

    Ooooo.. Loved this!โค

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      It basically wrote itself. Another one of those stories that needed to be told ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      1. iScriblr says:

        You did pure justice! ๐Ÿ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

        1. msjadeli says:

          Thank you, Richa!

          Liked by 1 person

  8. tedstrutz says:

    Fun spooky story, loved your descriptions. Now I need to smell some Bergamott.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. msjadeli says:

      Glad to hear you enjoyed it. Bergamott was one of the choices I was given by MLMM. Don’t forget the lime, they go together ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Like

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