Michael is the host of Tale Weaver. Michael says:
This week consider a fairy tale from the perspective of the evil step-mother, the wicked witch, the dark prince or any other bad/evil character you might be familiar with.
What might be their motivation, were they always the way they are depicted?
Do they have any redeeming qualities?
Go where the prompt leads you, have fun and don’t cast any spells that might backfire on you.
Link your tales using the linking tool below and limit your responses to 600 words max.
Long ago, my heart, bright red, beat with purity. As a small child, I was allowed to run freely near our village. Tripping lightly in sunshine and flower’s fields, the light my unwitting guide as I played the days long, oblivious to shadows lurking along the path, my young life was saturated with goodness. Those days, alas, are a quickly fading memory that soon will be long gone, as there is but a sliver of light left to shine upon me.
My mother, a laundress for the king, sometimes took me with her to help strip the royal beds of their linens, which then would be carted into the back courtyard, to the steaming tubs of water and lye that were used to boil the bedding clean. One horrific day, the tripod upon which a cauldron rested collapsed, and my poor dear mother was awash in boiling water and lye. Before my eyes, her skin washed away, as did her life.
As I had no other kin, the head of housekeeping took pity on me and set me up with a cot with the scullery maids. I was young, only 10 at the time, but I was strong. They learned to appreciate how many potatoes I could peel, and I never had to be told twice to gather the eggs from the hen house.
On one of my egg-gathering excursions, I caught the eye of the Captain of the Guard, who had a predilection for forbidden fruit. That night, as I slept on my small cot, I was awoken by him, saying I was needed out in the stables. Rubbing the sleep from my eyes, I was confused. At the same time, my senses were on alert, so I made sure to put my paring knife in my pocket as I got dressed.
When we got to the stables, nobody else was around. The Captain turned to me, and without a word, grabbed my arm and started pulling me to the area where the hay was stored. It wasn’t long before I was underneath him in the hay. My reflexes were quick and the wiry strength in my arm made puncturing his carotid artery easy. I was quickly covered with his blood and wriggled out from under him.
I crawled into the ice-cold water trough, clothes and all, and rinsed the blood off. Sneaking my way back inside the castle, I changed my clothes, quietly packed a sack full of food, then made my way out through the back ways and into the woods.
From that night forward, I have traveled the roads, doing what I need to survive. Stealing and killing mostly.