Enchantment

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Young Adult  |  House: Booksie Classic


Some things seem too good to be believed.

Submitted: November 28, 2017

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Submitted: November 28, 2017

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Enchantment

 

From the moment she set eyes on him, she wanted to be with none other. She had to find a way of making him want her. But how? He was so staggeringly handsome he attracted attention wherever he went while she, well, she was pretty plain.

 

But then his eyes met hers and it was just as if sparks flew between them. It did not seem possible to her, yet it seemed the attraction he had towards her was equally strong.

 

He gave her a rose. Just one, but it was perfect. It almost looked too good to be real. And such an unusual colour too. A red so dark it almost appeared black in places. The scent was heady, intoxicating. When she breathed it in it almost left her feeling drunk. She would go anywhere with him, do anything for him – all he had to do was ask.

 

And he did. He asked if she would go with him to his home; he would make her his bride in a special ceremony that could take place as soon as they arrived. She did not hesitate in answering him with a smile and a hand put in to his. She loved him and he loved her and nothing else mattered in the slightest.

 

Not once did she pause to think what she was doing. Not once did she question the kind of ceremony that could be arranged at a moment’s notice. Her life had gone from mundane to magical – why question the wonder!

 

He took her hand and led her along a path she had never even noticed before. That’s the problem with over-familiarity, she told herself. There are so many details you just do not bother to take in. And just look what a magical place she had been blind to. The colors were so vibrant, the birdsong so sweet. Too think, without him she would have remained oblivious to it all.

 

The house they arrived at wasn’t a castle or even a mansion. But with just the two of them, they had no need of a large home. The picture-book cottage was perfect, snug and cosy; perfect for a couple in love.

 

He made good with his promise of a wedding as soon as they arrived. Guests were waiting, so many of them, all as beautiful as he. She did not recognize even one of them but then she had never been that outgoing or social a person. Both the men and the women were tall and slim; not one would have looked out of place at any photo shoot. And their clothes were exquisite too. How could she be a bride when she was the most drab looking amongst them.

 

As though reading her thoughts one of the women approached and took her hand. She led her off towards the back of the house where hanging waiting was the most gorgeous dress she could ever have imagined. Lace upon lace upon silk, all decorated with tiny gems and jewels. No veil but instead she had an intricate crown of the tiniest cream, white and pink roses. Again, the scent was intoxicating; she felt like she was acting out some kind of dream.

 

A man appeared dressed in black. The ceremony was conducted in a language totally unfamiliar to her ears, but there seemed to be none of the traditional exchange of vows. He took her hand and instead of a ring, placed a bracelet around her wrist. Was it her imagination or did it tighten to a rather tight fit? Was she supposed to place one around his wrist? Nobody handed her a ring or bracelet or any thing else, so exchange did not seem to be a part of this wedding ritual.

 

Should she have taken notice, questioned the very ceremony? It was almost as though he was claiming ownership of her. Maybe she did question it, and maybe she did not care; there was not a single doubt in her mind that she belonged with him.

 

For days she did not leave the cottage, although he would leave her for a while sometimes. Not for long, never for enough time for her to feel the slightest twinge of loneliness. He provided everything she could possibly desire and more, why would she even think of going anywhere else.

 

Outside the door was a rosebush. It grew to one side of the steps, and it was covered thickly with those black and red blooms. It was never cold and the scent would waft through the open window, making it’s way through the entire house. It was a sultry smell, seductive, and so very addictive. Many times she would find herself, standing by the window or by the open door, breathing it in and basking in its magical effects.

 

There came a day when she had a desire to explore the garden. She opened the door as she had many times before, and stepped outside. She took another step and felt a pain, a tightening around her wrist. The bracelet was digging in so hard that tiny trickles of blood began to form around it’s edges. She shut the door and dashed inside to clean the blood away. As soon as she was back indoors with the door shut, the bracelet loosened sufficiently for her to tend to the tiny cuts.

 

For a few days, she played with it, the bracelet, trying to work it a bit looser, seeing if she could perhaps remove it. Whatever it was made from was strong, and did not give in to any of her efforts.

 

Once she asked him why he had given it to her while she had been required to give him nothing in return.

 

“Your company and beauty are all I could possibly desire. I have no use for such things.”

 

She wanted to say the same, to ask him if he would take it back, at least to have some adjustments made. He did not refuse because somehow the words never made it past her lips but were sealed inside until the very idea seemed to drift away.

 

He began to spend longer and longer periods of time away from the cottage, away from her. Had he grown tired of her already? And how long had it been since they were married? Time seemed to be an alien concept, to belong to another world. Perhaps if she went out and gathered some flowers to put indoors.....

 

Nonsense, she told herself, but the idea took seed and gradually she became convinced that that was just what she must do. Should she ask him first? No, better to let it be a surprise for him when he returned home.

 

She opened the door and again felt the tightening on her wrist, the bracelet once again digging so hard in to her flesh that it drew blood. She shut her mind to the discomfort, to the pain and took one step, then another.

 

A branch from the rose bush seemed to grow, to reach out, to stretch towards her. The thorns looked sharp, some of them barbed, and some of them shaped like some kind of vicious horn. These thoughts all went through her mind as it languidly reached towards her and caught her in it’s embrace.

 

So many pains seared through her skin as it was pierced time and time again, the thorns pressing ever deeper. Another branch reached out and gripped her legs, making her cry out in both agony and terror. The bracelet dug deeper, tightened so much she felt it would encircle her very bones before it stopped. Blood ran down her hand and dripped from her fingers and the roses seemed to be drinking it all in some kind of frenzied feast. She screamed and in the distance saw him, running to her rescue.

 

The scissors! She suddenly remembered she had brought some with her to clip some blooms. She took them in her other hand and snipped them on the roses. Where she cut in to the stems, it appeared to bleed. She snipped and snipped again only slowly becoming away of his shouts, his cries.

 

She looked towards him and it was as though he had been attacked by some invisible beast. He had ragged cuts appearing all other him, deep ones, crippling ones. He was not in any state to help her. She lashed out again and again with the scissors, the agony, the frenzy, deafening her to his increasingly frantic wails.

 

And then he dropped to the ground, fell in a heap. The rose bush let go, withdrawing it’s thorns, withering and dying in front of her eyes. Once she was free, she ran towards him, but something was happening.....he was disintegrating in front of her eyes. The bracelet slipped from her wrist unnoticed and she dropped to her knees beside him.

 

* * * * *

 

“She’s coming round,” a voice said. Who’s voice? Not one she recognized, certainly not his.

 

Footsteps making their way squeakily towards her. Someone gently separates her eye-lids, a tiny torch is shone in to each eye. A doctor, white-coated, stethoscope hanging around his neck; beside him a nurse in a pale blue uniform.

 

She tries to speak, licks her dry lips, whispers out, “Where am I?”

 

“Do you remember anything about what happened? About what made you do what you did?”

 

What is he talking about? What did she do? There was a man.....not just any man but one that was special. Wasn’t there? She can’t quite remember, but she did something, didn’t she. She killed him. Is she in prison? There are no bars on the door, no locks. A hospital, then.

 

She notices a pain in her wrist, her left one. She cannot raise her arm to look but if she moves her head slightly she can see the bandages. She didn’t do anything to herself, did she? It’s all too cloudy. She cannot really remember anything, not clearly, not that makes any kind of sense.

 

“Phone psych ward, tell them she’s ready to transfer.”

 

The doctor and the nurse turn to leave her and for some reason she can’t stop the tears from falling.


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