Short Story Sunday: Beauty

“I only picked a rose. Just one rose, and now I must be his,” said Papa as he packed his bags.

“Wait, why, what? The beast we hear of in the forest wants you? For a flower? What a douche. Why were you there picking flowers?” Beauty was flustered by her Papa’s story.

“I wanted a flower for your sister Joy. It is her birthday and she has been so depressed since her baby was born,” said Papa.

Poor Joy had tried to be happy but she was tired and sad. Her husband was caring and tried to give her the joy she was named after.

Joy stood in the doorway, her baby in her arms. “It is my fault dear Papa. I will take your place.”

Beauty looked at her sister. Joy should have been named Beauty. She glowed with goodness and love. She was also beautiful beyond measure.

“No, it is my price to pay,” said Papa.

“Nonsense, I will go,” said Beauty.

“No, you will die. There is nobody in the castle of the Beast except the beast,” said Joy.

“Dear sister, do not worry about me. I’m already dead. Seriously, nobody around here likes me anyway. They all think I’m weird,” said Beauty.

“You are not weird,” said Papa.

Beauty laughed and hugged her Papa and her sister. She kissed the sweet baby, packed her bags, and left for the castle in the great forest.

In the middle of the night, Beauty, a pretty young woman with dark blonde hair, and big brown eyes arrived at the castle in the woods. She knocked on the door.

Nobody answered.

“Oh come on. Let me in. I came for my Papa. What do you want with an old man anyway. He just picked a rose for his daughter with postpartum depression. One rose. One freaking rose. You have thousands of roses in the garden here. What’s your problem?” Yelled Beauty.

The great door was opened by an unseen hand. Beauty entered. The place was beautiful but empty.

“Hello?”

She looked around and saw cameras in the corners of the room. Shit. I should have known this would be weird, she thought.

“I know you’re there. I see the cameras. You might as well come out. I will find you.”

Walking down the hallway she noticed that the eyes in the pictures followed her. The furniture shifted as if it was alive.

Then she heard a noice. A low growl. She tried the door in front of her. It was locked. Out of her hair she pulled a bobby pin and picked the lock.

Inside was a beast, a man who looked like the cross between a wolf and a lion, sitting in front of a bank of screens.

“You’re the Beast? What are you? A Werewolf or something?”

The Beast who was wearing a black AC/DC Tee shirt spoke. “I am not a Werewolf.”

“OK. So tell me. What are you?”

“Why are you here. I expected your Papa, or your sister Joy.”

“Joy is married and has two children. How do you know about Joy?”

“Joy is the most beautiful woman in the land. Everyone knows of Joy.”

“Whatever. I’m Beauty, the sister nobody ever sees. You know, Beast, or whatever your name is, this is really messed up. What are you? Some sort of weird geek who can’t get a girl. Do you have everyone because you’re different?”

Beast looked sad. “I am different. People fear me.”

“Welcome to the club Beast,” said Beauty.

“I am a prisoner of my own stupidity and selfishness.”

“Tell me about it.”

The beast held out his hand. “Let’s dance. There is a closet full of beautiful dresses. Go change.”

“I’m not going to be part of your weird fantasy. How’d you get here. You didn’t start out as a wolf man did you?”

“I was selfish. I was mean. I was everything a man should not be?”

“A politician.” said Beauty.

The Beast smiled, showing great white teeth. “No, not a politician. Anyway, to make a long story short, I was enchanted by a woman, a witch, I’d been dating. I’d been vain. I’d cheated on her. I lied to her in more than one way. She turned me into this.”

“I understand how bitter you are. Seriously, I went through something like that but then I accepted the fact that I was different. Just because you were a douch doesn’t mean you can’t change. It sounds to me like you have changed, at least a bit.”

“I have. Could you ever love me?”

“Seriously dude, I’m a Vampire. That’s why I left. I was glad to leave. I love my family and all but I don’t belong there. But I’m not sure I belong here either. The castle is nice and all but you know, this isn’t the Bachelor. I’m not waiting around for a rose from a guy I hardly know.”

“I get it. I’m sorry I was such a jerk. Tell your dad and sister that I’m sorry.”

And suddenly the room filled with magical sparks that didn’t burn and colored smoke, and when it cleared a good looking young man stood before Beauty.

“Wow, Beast. You’re hot. My only advice would be to stay cool. Be good. Keep your karma good.”

Beauty was suddenly hungry and sank her fangs into his arm. When she was done she kissed him, packed her bags, and left.

After a few minutes, she pulled over her car to the side of the road to send a text. “Papa. I’m ok. Don’t worry about the Beast. I’m taking off. Maybe to the beach. I’ll call you soon. xoxo.”

She didn’t know where the road leading out of the other side of the forest would lead, but she knew it couldn’t be as weird as where she had come from.

~ end

Tangled Tales

 

Thank you for reading this tangled tale. These stories are written on Sunday mornings while I drink my coffee, listen to the birds and my old calico cat purring. I never know what I will write about. Sometimes the stories I write are brilliant, sometimes not so much. If you write I encourage you to write every Sunday. It is sort of like going to church – a place where you can find your own inner whatever and find what is good, or funny, or just yours. I’m also listening to NPR. There is a great interview of Jack White talking about The Raconteurs. It has nothing to do with this story but it made me happy.

So read stories, write stories, listen to music, hug someone you love.

~ Juliette aka Vampire Maman

 

 

 

 

 

Vampire Diary: It Will Be Fun

Dear Diary,

I went to my mail box today. Unlike when I lived in my castle the mail box is in a wall of mail boxes built like a columbarium with a lot of little boxes all together with names on the, except mail is put there. It would not surprise me to find ashes, or even a skull in my box one day. That would be a pleasant change from so many advertisements.

The two cats, and the Jane the coyote pup with the soul of a Werewolf, followed me to the mail box. They ran around together then as I stopped the cats climbed a nearby tree, and Jane sat on my foot and leaned against my leg.

As I gathered up my mail, glad to see a packet of letters from Europe, my neighbor , a woman named Liz whom I am friendly with and drink wine with came to get her own mail.

“I am so glad you and Gillian are going to see Beauty and the Beast with us,” she said with a big smile.

I did not understand. What had my lover Gillian agreed to?

“I do not understand,” I said to Liz.

“You’re so cute Vlad. The movie. Gillian said you’d go with us. We’re getting a group together. It will be fun.” Then she scratched Jane between her shoulder blades. Jane licked Liz on the chin.

When I arrived back at my house, behind closed doors, I thought about what Liz had said. It will be fun.

I thought about a long time ago when I was a young man of seventeen years and someone said to me it will be fun.

In the court of my father was a Vampire called Lord Cuthbert. Cuthbert was not only large and handsome, but he was also vain and cruel.

One day he said, “Come with me Vlad. We will go to the woods for sport. It will be fun.

When we arrived in a dark spot in the woods Cuthbert took out his whip and started to beat me. Then he pushed me to the ground and held me there with his foot.

“You are too pretty to be a man. Maybe I should make you my bitch,” he said laughing and showing his fangs.

I was strong and young. I pushed him off of me, but he sliced open my arm with his knife. I stood in shock as he laughed in my face. Then he took my horse and left me in the woods.

“Next time Vlad, I will make you cry like a little girl,” he said as he rode off.

I said nothing to my father. Only my friend Randolpho knew what had happened.

The following week Cuthbert said to Randolpho, “Come to the woods with me. We will hunt wild boar. It will be fun.”

Randolpho went to the woods with Cuthbert. There Cuthbert beat Randolpho with a club, and stabbed him over and over with a knife. Then he took Randolpho’s clothing and left him naked to walk home.

The following day Cuthbert said to a Vampire girl called Sabine, “Come Beautiful Sabine, see the wild flowers with me. It will be fun.”

Cuthbert overpowered Sabine and violated her. He cut off a large chunk of her hair. He cut her face. He carved his name on her belly with his jewel handled knife, and threatened to kill her if she told anyone.

Sabine told Randolpho for he was her sweetheart.

The following day I said to Cuthbert, “Come to the woods with us near where the Wolf Folk live in their rough cottages. We will play a trick on them. It will be fun.”

Cuthbert was happy to go with us. He enjoyed nothing more than taunting and molesting Wolf Folk. We passed the village of the Wolf People, those who are part animal, and live as poor sad outcasts in their rough villages. They looked at us from the windows of their crude houses. They licked their lips with fear in their eyes.

“Look at you ugly filthy creatures,” yelled Cuthbert. “Go back in your dens before I put chains around your necks and pull you to Hell. But first I will take your women dog style.” Then he laughed a full belly laugh and showed his long sharp Vampire fangs. I was disgusted with him but said nothing.

To make this long story somewhat shorter I will finish up as not to get hand cramps. Outside of the Wolf Village I told Cuthbert to get off of his horse. When he did I struck him down with my sword. I cut off his right hand. He fell to his knees. Randolpho kicked Cuthbert down, then took out his knife and cut off Cuthberts manhood. As he lay screaming, the Wolf Folk gathered around. I sliced into Cuthbert’s flesh and threw it to the Wolf Folk who quickly ate it up. Bit by bit I flayed him, feeding the hungry half humans. Small Wolf Children ran up and begged for his nose, lips and ears. Cuthbert watched as he was devoured and begged us to stop.

“Sabine begged for you to stop and you laughed in her face, and made her suffer the worst humiliation. You disgust me. This is for Sabine,” I said as I cut off his nose and threw it to the laughing Wolf Children. Then Randolpho and I left. The sounds of Cuthbert screaming could be heard as the Wolf Folk ate him alive, and did not leave a single bone untouched. From a place behind the Wolf Folk Sabine watched and smiled.

Then Gillian came into the room and asked, “What are you thinking about. Vlad, the look on your face…”

I smiled. “Nothing darling. Liz told me that we were going to go see a movie. It will be fun.”

~ Vlad

 

Dear Diary,

Movie theaters fascinate me. There are times when I am unable to tell I am just sitting and watching. I am transported into another world.

This movie Beauty and the Beast is an old story. Like a girl falling in love with one of the Wolf Folk, only this man is enchanted by a wizard. He is a beast in a land of no other beasts. That is how some Vampires feel when they are out of sorts and wonder who could love them. Oh the prisons some put around themselves.

It was fun, but the theater was full of people so there was no chance to go to a back rows for snacks.

But the story was odd. I prefer the film Gillian and I saw last week. It was straight forward and to the point. It was about a man called Rick who owned a bar in a place where refugees met. The woman he loved and mysteriously lost showed up with a new husband who was a famous leader. Rick let her go despite the agony in his heart because it was for the good of all. I might not have been so noble. A kiss is not just a kiss. A bite is just not a bite. And all beautiful friendships have notable beginnings.

All of the women who went to view the movie with us said I reminded them of the Beast. I asked why. They said it was that we were both cute. I do not understand, but I smile without my fangs to be polite. I do not want them to ever consider me a beast. I thought of the Wolf Folk. I do not ask Gillian about it because she would only roll her eyes at me.

~ Vlad

 

Dear Diary,

Yesterday I had a dream about dancing with Gillian in a huge ballroom. She wore a yellow ball gown. I’d never seen her look so beautiful. We danced around the floor with eyes only on each other, then the chairs around the edge of the room started to move towards us. When they started to attack I woke.

Tonight I went out to more adult places to hunt. I had had enough of fairy tales and talking furniture. At one intersection there were bars, alleys, dark corners, and people wanting companionship, if only for a night.

When I arrived home, full from a successful night, the cats and Jane were waiting.

Gillian came out wearing something pretty, yellow, extremely small, lacy, and almost completely transparent.

She held out her hand and led me towards the stairs to the bedroom. “It will be fun,” she whispered.

“I have an idea for some games,” I said.

“Be my guest,” said Gillian, as she put her lips to mine in kiss that would enchant the coldest heart and deadest soul. Then she…oh yes she did.

And she was telling the truth. It was fun.

~ Vlad