by Amy Aderman
The bean nighe is never wrong. She sits by a stream, washing the clothes of those soon to die. The water runs red with blood but the stains never fade. If you are bold, she will answer three questions but she will ask three in return; only true words must fall from your lips.
I went walking the night before my wedding and saw her green-clad figure crouched by the stream. "Will I have a happy wedding?" I called out, approaching.
She didn't look up from her work. "Yes. Why did you choose this man?"
"I wish to leave my father's house." I paused, thinking. "My youngest brother has been ill. Are you taking him away?"
"The boy will recover before your wedding night." The fabric she held slapped against the water's surface. "Why did you not weep when your first husband-to-be died?"