"You have only a hundred years left."
Baba Yaga lifted her gaze to the god Perun, who sat in her favorite chair in front of the window, his fat belly straining the golden belt at his thick waist. "I don't even care," she told him.
Perun frowned, shocked by her response. "How can you not care, Baba? You will die soon if you do not stop offering boons to these human cattle."
She turned away, staring through the window. The trees beyond the sparkling glass were green, vibrant with life, and birds sang high in their branches. "I hunger for love." The admission was like bile in her throat, burning her with its truth.
The god scoffed. "You must come to Pirin. I will throw a party under the sacred tree for you. You can mate with one of my princes and live forever among the trees."
Baba Yaga closed her eyes, despair sliding through her. "I wish to find true love, not a pale mating based on expediency."
"You reach for the stars when a bright light will serve, Baba." Perun stood, striding toward her. He placed his hands on her shoulders and kissed the top of her head. "Come. It saddens me to see you thusly. Let us return to Pirin and I will make you smile."
Baba shook her head. "If I cannot find true love I would rather die."
Perun sighed. "Very well. I wish you well on your search. Though I hold out little hope for your success. What mortal man would wish to tie himself to one such as you?"
With his well meant but cruel words, the Slavic god speared Baba Yaga through the heart, deepening her despair to a nearly incapacitating state. "I will find my true love, God of War. Do not doubt me," she murmured.
As Perun transformed into the Eagle and flew from Baba's lonely cabin in the woods, she sighed, praying her words would not be sprayed like acid back in her face.
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