The Wizard

– Be careful, when come back, – she has said, putting on, – my father tell, that the wizard goes at hand. The dogs therefore badly howl.
– People tell that before to die the wizard searches somebody, whom to transmit his force.
– Yea, and woe is to the one whom he meets.
– Why woe? Only this time he does not take, but gives. And it is completely not bad to be a wizard. If you want to eat, you can eat everybody And if you want the woman, – Goyko has looked at Ivanka, – you can come to her in the mask of her friend, and she will give the all by herself.
– You frighten me, Goyko. You speak like Radko. He also promised me once to come in your guise.
– Really? ? he?s wrapped up, and to horror of Ivanka, he start to vary. The nose?s hunched up, the hair and eye have darkened, and the misshapen scar has appeared on a cheek. Through few seconds Radko himself stay opposite her.
– So you have found the wizard?.. – she could not believe her eyes, – And you think, that you has taken possession of me?! You had had only body...
Ivanka has made cross over him, but Radko only has laughed.
– You too much listen your father – priest1. The crosses don?t act on us. And about a body, let so. I have taken, that I wanted... That I too much time wanted. And that he had... For a beautiful muzzle.
– You understand nothing, – Ivanka wanted to object, but didn?t know how, – I would go for him at the world's end. And even at the world beyond.
– I can to arrange it, – Radko has experienced, as a coma of a wrath begin to mount in his already inhuman heart.
The noise of approaching crowd has interrupted their dispute. Radko has looked out. It seemed, the half of the village went to their shed. Somebody with a torch, somebody armed by a pitchfork, somebody ? by a spade, somebody with the dog. Dogs are plaintive whine.
– Damnation, – swear Radko, as it seemed to Ivanka, too quietly, – It seems, I am tracked down. And there is real Goyko...
It was true, at the front of crowds there was her darling, whom one small childe informed, that he with Ivanka already had gone to deserted forge.
The crowd surrounded a shed, and Radko, again changing the mask, has rushed directly to the center.

*
When the people have parted, having opened to the lunar face the lacerate body of Goyko, Ivanka has gone out from the shed. By a hazed look she has led round the crowd, while her view was rested on a body, lying on a ground. She knows, that they have killed not right man. But the people don?t listen her.
– She was with the wizard. And he has converted her to a witch, – suddenly has cried the priest appearing from nowhere – They should be burnt together! She is not my daughter any more!
The crowd has picked up call–up, and soon shed has flared, having hidden in the fire the dead man and the live woman. And when her last cry has died down in night, the pale old man has approached to a burning down shed. In this man countrymen hardly have recognized his priest. He looked completely different than a minute ago, and he repeated: ?Where is my daughter? ? But the silence was the answer. The terrible guess has struck the people like a lightning. Throwing a pitchfork and torches, they in horror have run away from this ill–starred shed, who – attempting to bead, who – simply having enclosed a head by hands.
Radko has caught itself on the reflection, that he does not feel to them neither pity, nor hatred. He simply comes back home.
(1996)

Abutrab Aliverdijev