Every witch must be hunted. That was what the Sheriff always said. And so, it was no surprise to see him saddled onto a witch horse with his armor on and a sword under his arm.
A witch horse is a horse which has been raised in a fairy ring. When it is old enough, it is allowed out, and as soon as it steps onto fresh non-magical soil, it's mane turns sandy colored and it's eyes turn water blue. It is christened with the ability to canter fast at breathtaking speed and a strong jaw, finally, topped with a nose. One that can sniff out witches.
The Sheriff was gazing ahead, a grim expression on his face, when suddenly the witch horse lifted it's head from grazing and gave an alarmed snort.
"She has smelled the witch men!" he called over his shoulder as he shook the reins. His horse leaped into action, breaking into a throaty whinny and kicking up it's hind legs. He then sped into the leafy forest.Foam bubbled from it's mouth and it's eyes rolled, showing the white bits, as he avoided a tree and leaped over a log.
The Sheriff stared determinedly ahead and soon realized why the witch horse was so scared. An extremely ugly witch was shuffling ahead. She had a bent back and was dragging a leg behind her. She was waving her hands, and trees at once untangled themselves from their roots and jumped aside for her.
"Too bad witches can't do magic on themselves, she could make herself faster." thought the Sheriff as he bent forwards so he was neck to neck with his horse. About three steps behind the witch, she spun around.The Sheriff squeezed his eyes shut. Another thing about witch horses, they could look a witch in the eye without melting.
Now, when a witch sees anything that might be a threat to her, she casts a spell, but a witch horse, can become oblivious to the spell and rip her grotesque head off if the rider whispers the magical word at the right time. The Sheriff could hear the witch muttering a spell at unbelievable speed, and as soon as he felt the breeze of her hand as she waved it to conduct the spell, everything seemed to happen in slow motion.
He whispered the magic word and felt the horse's body jerk forwards. Then he heard the promising crunch of the horse's teeth bite down on the head, and opened his eyes.The witch's body lay in a curled heap on the floor , while her head remained very much alive, her tongue lolling out and her eyes spinning.
The Sheriff barked orders to his men to take and burn the body using the tamtam berry and the tail of a sewer rat mixed with fire. He then took his sword and speared the head.
"This is a nasty piece of work." he announced, holding it up. The witch gnashed her teeth and rolled her eyes. "We'll need more then a tamtam berry and a rat tail." he muttered. He quickly called his men back.
"This is the worst, most evil witch I've ever seen, my men. We simply have to use something more powerful. The thing is, I don't know what to use. I don't have any recipes that would be allowed here." he told them sternly.
"So then, what should we do Sheriff?" a young scrap of a man named TomtTubuck asked fearfully. "After a few minutes, she'll regain her voice, and put spells on each and every one of us."
The thing is with witches is that when you bite off their head, some of them stay alive. If that happens, you simply throw the head in the fire alongside the body, but in this case, since they didn't have a fire yet, they would waste their precious minutes. You need minutes, because if the witch regains her voice, which she will i around 3 minutes, she will put a spell on you, then pull her body from the flames and stick her head back on. Rather nasty business I can assure you.
The Sheriff nodded "I know TomtTubuck, but the more powerful spells needs something we cannot give." He took a cage from his witch horse's back and rammed the snarled, still speechless head in.
"What?" asked TomtTubuck, and was joined by choruses of "Yes, tell us." or "Go on Sheriff." from the other men. The Sheriff sighed sadly, then walked over to his loyal witch horse and gently patted her, then he quietly said "A witch horse leg."
There was silence, except for the strangled whispers of words uttered by the witch and the snorts from the witch horses.
"But,... We have the only witch horses in the world, Sheriff. They're very rare. Besides, they've won many a battle for us. We can't just..." another man began, then trailed off.
The Sheriff swallowed hard. Under so much pressure, he felt like he would pop. All at once, he gabbed the bars of the cage and sharply rattled them. "Just SHUT UP, SHUT UP!" The witch actually stopped her rasps for a moment, before trying to speak again, and with an intense feeling of dread from all the men, she said a word from a spell as clear as day. "Bibllebonk."
This had to sink into the witch also, so she had look of utter bewilderment, before a slow,,cracked smile spread across her face.Now she could put a spell on all of them. And they hadn't even singed her body yet! What luck!
"No, no, no!" the Sheriff cried desperately as the witch began to recite a spell calmly. Gulping, the Sheriff turned to look at his men. They all looked ashen faced. Two words away from the end of the spell, however, the Sheriff's witch horse leapt forwards, and knocked the cage so roughly to the ground that it broke open. He bent down and nabbed her tongue with his teeth, then ripped it from her mouth.
The witch roared and tried in vain to repeat the spell, but she couldn't pronounce the words properly without her tongue, so it was hopeless. All the men gave screams and whoops of relief, grabbing the horse and rubbing it vigorously, and giving it a flurry of pats.
"You can't harm anyone anymore." the Sheriff proudly told the outraged witch as he produced a carrot and passed it towards his horse
"Well done ZepZaw." he praised it proudly. The horse whinnied.