posted on Jun, 14 2016 @ 09:06 PM
The young Princess stared out the window at the impending nightfall. The shadows being cast by the trees caused their trunks and branches to appear to
be stretching toward the castle like arms and fingers ominously reaching for her. Her stomach began to twist into knots when she heard the
Nightingale’s faint song in the distance. The dull ache that always starts in her neck began to slowly creep its way upward and wrap its clenching
fingers around her head, seemingly digging the tips into her eye sockets. These were the usual precursors to the nightmare that had become her reality
nearly every night.
The Princess sighed deeply. She will be defeated again. The darkness was coming and being powerless to stop it the Princess would, once more, succumb
to the pain and anguish that had become part of her meager existence. Soon, Mother would be along with hot tea that she would be unable to drink and
fluffing pillows that would bring no comfort to the Princess’s throbbing head. Mother would help her into bed as the dizziness came and tuck the
covers around her tightly. Her gentle kiss to the forehead almost, just briefly, seemed to ease the sneaking torture.
The young Princess heard the creak of the top step and the gentle tiptoeing of her Mother coming down the hall.
As Mother had done so many nights before, after the tea and pillows, she would take her place in the chair by the window watching over her child.
After lighting a small candle and opening a book to pass the time she would begin to steel herself to face the darkness by her child’s side and try,
helplessly, to defend her from the Evil wickedness that would surely come as it had so many nights before. The Princess could sense the Hag gaining
strength and knew when she was nearing. Sparkles and zig zags of light began to flit across the darkening room. Shadow people appeared to be skulking
in the corners foretelling of their Witch Queen's arrival. The Princess squeezed her eyes tightly shut and turned away from the window pulling the
heavy quilt tightly up and around her neck. She felt comforted in knowing her Mother was but footsteps away even though the evil woman, who was
imminently approaching, had no fear of anyone.
The Princess tried to take her mind away to a place of soft light and soothing colors. She desperately needed that place of love and protection.
Perhaps, this time, sleep would come and slow the impetus for the torment that she was facing. She subdued her breathing and intently concentrated on
the feeling of her lungs expanding and contracting. The slow and methodical pattern eventually eased the Princess off to half sleep.
Suddenly, just after entering the borderlands, the Princess awoke with a start. She heard the rustling of the Hag’s dress and knew she had made her
way into the room. The tingling of fear began at the bottom of her feet and slowly slithered its way up her body. She felt paralyzed and the blood
pulsing in her ears was getting louder and louder. She shook her head from side to side and whispered “no”. Mother, hearing this, slammed her
book shut and came towards the edge of the bed. “She’s here, isn’t she?” Mother asked. The Princess nodded and opened her eyes wide staring at
the ceiling awaiting the awful face that would soon appear on the other side of her. She slipped her hand from under the covers and reached out.
Mother seized her hand and clenched it tightly while falling to her knees looking around the dimly lit room for signs of the intruder that would never
make itself known to Mother.
The Princess gasped as she felt the slight pressure of something crawling up onto the bed with her. Upon hearing the Princess draw in a sharp breath,
Mother held her daughter’s hand tighter and pressed it to her pounding chest. The Princess’s eyes darted in the direction of the presence crawling
toward her even as she felt paralyzed with terror. There was the old Hag, on all fours, like an animal leaning toward the Princess’s face. She
appeared small, but had an old withered face. She seemed like a child who had aged but never grew in the physical sense. The Hag bared her teeth and
licked her lips. Then the whispering began as it usually did. The incoherent utterances spewing from between her cracked and shriveled lips. The
Princess was continually unable to make out the murmurs except for one word. As the vile creature leaned in closer to the Princess, the scream that
hopelessly needed release became lodged deep in her throat. Her muscles drawn tightly with horror and panic were too useless to follow the command
from her brain to get up and get away from this place quickly.
Mother leaned across the Princess and faced the presence that was invisible to her. She firmly and sternly said “Get away from my child you evil and
gruesome wretch and go back to the Hell where you came from. I will not let you steal her soul!” Mother covered the child with her own body in an
attempt to shield the young one from the wickedness. The Hag, nearly touching the Princess’s face now, bellowed a laugh that Mother couldn’t hear
yet the Princess felt the hot, wet breath against her ear. The creature, still mumbling the evil promises and threats, finally, was close enough to
scream the only word the Princess could ever recognize.
At that moment, the spell seemed to be broken. The scream that had been stuffed down inside the Princess came exploding out and she thrust the covers,
which had become burdensome to her, away and kicking them out from her body that was, now, soaked with sweat. She leapt into the waiting arms of her
Mother. The Princess felt the tears cascading from her Mother’s face and sensed the angst inside her Mother’s heart. The entity was gone again for
now. She always vanishes nearly as quickly as she comes. Mother rocked the princess like a baby and stroked her hair holding her tightly. The
agonizing pain that had encompassed the Princess’s being had taken a reprieve, temporarily, after the dreaded encounter with the evil witch. After
some time had passed and longing for sleep nudged her, the Princess slid off of her Mother’s lap and back into the solace of her featherbed. Mother
fluffed the pillows and tucked the covers in tightly around her child. Mother’s gentle kiss to the Princess’s forehead almost, just briefly,
seemed to ease the sneaking torture.
Mother walked over to the window and took her place in the chair beside it. She opened a book to pass the time and steel herself to face the night by
her child’s side and try, helplessly, to defend her child from the Evil wickedness that would surely come as it had so many nights before.