Decided to go ahead and drop the Writing Time title. Keeps things a little simpler. Writing Time will be reserved for other writing ventures, like the upcoming NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month) and novel updates.
A Mirror Broken Too Soon
By Nojh Livic
She held the dress to her body and looked down at it. It was a deep burgundy with the hemline falling to the floor and the neck line a bit lower than her usual style. It was perhaps the most expensive dress in the entire village and certainly a fine gift from her husband, who was the richest and most handsome man in town according to all. Yet as she drew herself to the mirror the woman who stood behind the dress was in neither excited nor pleased by what she beheld.
She sighed and set the dress on the hanger before she began undressing to prepare for the evening’s festivities. A glint of the firelight drew her attention to her hand mirror beside the bed. It was broken as it had been for over a year. The man who had given it to her said it would let her see back to the times they had shared. She had never gotten it to work after she had found it shattered in her pack. She shook her head and began to prepare.
It took her a while to get ready. They had no servants. Oh her husband had a man-servant but it would have been inappropriate for him to attend her even if he wasn’t a sniveling sycophant, at least to her husband. She glanced at her dresser and then the vanity. She imagined them coming to life, offering advice on a particular piece of jewelry wear or shade of blush to apply. Their voices were real enough in her head but she knew this to be a dream. It had taken several sessions with the doctor for her to realize this. Still her eyes wandered to the small tea-cup, slightly chipped, at the edge of her vanity desk. Again she shook her head and stood to dress.
It had been a long night. She had looking ravishing, as every man over the age of fifty felt safe telling her. Her husband had shown the appreciation of his gift by leading her through several dances to the rejoicing of the townsfolk, who fawned over them as if they were some royal couple. Save of course for the psuedo-widowed contingent, as she liked to think of them. Three sisters off in the corner who had nothing but eyes for her husband despite their own beauty and many invitations to dance.
It reminded her to feel lucky to have married him.
Yet when they danced, his bulging hairy muscles around her slender frame, she found herself wondering why they were no hairier or why he was not larger. They were silly thoughts. He was by far the largest man in town and often boasted about how much body hair he had. The latter was a habit she often wished he would grow out of. Still she smiled up at him and danced even as a small part of her felt some deep longing for something she could not remember.
After the dancing, he led the other men to the kegs for rounds of boisterous singing and drinking. She was left a lone, mostly. Other matrons of the town joined in their own style of dancing and gossiping. She tried to join in but she had little in common with the other women who were far older than her. They were her father’s age.
She had not seen her father in months. He had finally decided to move to the city after several months of living alone, even though she had visited him every day. The doctor had pronounced him of sound mind and so she was not worried for his health. She received letters from him weekly, explaining all the fine inventions he had managed to sell, and occasionally a package of books. She dearly loved them and read them when she found time, usually when her husband was away as he didn’t approve of her reading so much.
Her life was not provincial despite the town she lived in and yet she found herself stepping out onto the front porch of her home. She pulled the robe tighter against the cold and lifted her face to the full moon. Her husband was asleep inside and oblivious to the world after their intimacy. He did not need her as much these days and she realized she was glad. She loved it enough during the act, especially so when he was rough, but was never really conscious of her own desires.
There was a howl in the distance. A deep throaty song that was joined by several other howls. She shivered again and turned to go inside when a new howl froze her steps. It was guttural, more like a roar, and drowned out the other animal sounds. She turned her head back towards the darkness, her eyes wide. Her heart raced not with fear but with exhilaration and excitement. She took a few steps more to the edge of the porch, straining to hear the sound again, a hand lifting towards the darkness even as the other held her robe closed.
“Belle?” Her husband asked sleepily from behind her. She spun around, wrapping her arms around herself, feeling all the world like a little girl caught peeking in the adult section of the library. “What are you doing out here?”
“I thought I heard something…” she began but he had already stepped out , wrapped a huge arm around her, and was drawing her back inside. He murmured words as he led her back to bed that she did not hear, her thoughts, mind, and her heart, still outside side with the wolves and the beast.
Ten points if you can guess from what story this alternate timeline is based. It’s pretty easy, I think. I’ve had the songs from it going through my head all day. I suppose this is borderline fan fiction but the idea wouldn’t get out of my head. Hopefully this will deal with some of that.