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Forever Silence

by Noelle


The dress was her grandmother’s. She knew the second she pulled it from the box; the smell of lilacs filled her nostrils and stirred her heart. She would never get to enjoy the true source of the smell, only in spirts of memories and false hopes.

As delicately as if it were made of glass, she pulled the dress from the box. It was purple, the same hue of the lilacs her grandmother spread across everything she wore. The girl held it against her bare, pale skin and raised her head to look in the mirror. Breath caught in her throat from the beauty. The color contrasted the skin she had never been able to color and the endless black her scalp produced.

She was beautiful.

She caught a glimpse of her mother in the mirror. My dear Emilee, do get dressed. We mustn't dawdle. The prince has arrived to escort you.

Emilee forced a smile onto her face and nodded, the response her mother wanted. It was practiced, as always. There wasn’t a moment of her royal life that she worshiped. It was rushed, fake. The food was dry, she never had a playmate. With her condition there were only a few who would ever invite her. There was a better life elsewhere.

She chanced a look out the large window that overlooked the village. The people could barely be seen from the high distance the castle sat, but the endless rows of wooden houses and colorful trees reminded her of what could be. Her heart beat faster against the boned cage, desperate for a moment, even just a breath, of freedom.

A heavy palm struck her head. Rubbing the spot, she turned again to face her mother.

Aren’t you listening? She laughed. Of course you’re not. Filthy child. You’re wasting my time. Look at me, I’m not even presentable. Emilee did look. The pressed rose colored dress and tight up do her mother wore sure showed otherwise. If you aren’t dressed by the time I return you will be attending the party as you are now. Surely that won’t help your case with any of the princes. A cold smile snaked across her lips before she turned on a heel and disappeared into the corridor.

Emilee locked her jaw as she stepped into the dress. No tears would dare fall, nor wails from deep within. Her mother was a coward. She never knew how to treat Emilee and she never would. So she resolved to terrible measures and terrible deeds. Emilee wouldn’t ever give it an ounce of recognition. Showing your soul to the devil only builds the temptation.

It took only moments for the dress to be smoothed and her hair to be primped. She bowed her head slightly to her servants as thanks, something her mother would never approve of. It just wasn’t the way. She took one last longing gaze in the mirror. Tears welled in her eyes. The dress fit her perfectly, even though the measurements were her grandmother’s. She breathed again and again, taking in the scent she had missed so dearly since her grandmother left. Nothing was real, but it was all there in front of her now.

She soon convinced herself to do her entertaining for the night and stepped out into the hallway. Just as her mother had said, there was the prince – tall, proper. He had been trained well by his father. Those brown eyes of his rested on her face, no place other. What a gentleman, she thought wistfully. Now if only he would stay one for the night. He would be the first.

A simple smile appeared as he took her hand to kiss it. Prince Ferrel. My dear Emilee, it is an honor to finally make your acquaintance. You are so lovely this night. The occasion surely can’t be my presence.

Emilee took in the way his hair caressed his scalp and neck, the way his blue vest clung to his strong chest, the way his trousers fit him perfectly. He was a sight. She wondered what her mother had to tell him to get him here.

It was then that Ferrel’s lips lost their joy and tightened. The air left Emilee’s body and she trained her gaze on the floor. This was the moment when everything was ruined, when the night would end for her yet just begin for a man to take advantage. Nothing was to change no matter the grace the prince had shown.

She felt his hand move across her forehead and behind her ear. She shuddered at the touch, out of disgust and reasons she couldn’t control. A scolding was in order for her indecisiveness. There couldn’t be any weakness she could show him.

So when he gently nudged her chin for her eyes to meet his, she showed him a defiance he had likely never seen. If it bothered him, he didn’t show it.

Please excuse the intrusion, he said sorrowfully. I only meant to fix that strand of hair. I have to admit though, I might’ve only made it worse. Men aren’t good at fixing ladies’s hair you know. A small light shined in his eyes and his stomach shook. In a single movement, Emilee reached out to grab his hand. He stopped the second she did.

She shook her head and spoke as best she could. No. Don’t stop. I want to hear you.

The perplexed look on Ferrel’s face proved her actions wrong, but it was soon replaced by that smile she had first seen. Then his hands moved.

Emilee closed her eyes, focusing on the slight vibrations of his skin. His laugh was soft and trained, proper like a prince’s should be. But it wasn’t like the rest. There was more joy than pride. He wasn't a prince first.

Perhaps, for once, she had overestimated.


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16 Reviews


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Sun Oct 14, 2018 4:08 pm
thedevinhiggins wrote a review...



Hello!

First of all, this story is wonderfully written. It flows well, and the pacing is great! I also love the characterization, and the imagery is so vivid and beautiful!

However, the ending left me a little confused. It just doesn't seem at all finished. I mean, if you're writing another part to it, then I understand, but if not, it just seems like there should be more to the story, you know? Like what happens after the dance and/or after the event. Overall, I just think this idea could be expanded on and made into a full story.

Anyway, I love this story in the way that it's written so harmoniously and beautifully! I just think the story itself could be longer.

Keep writing, please!




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Thu Oct 11, 2018 3:20 am
Iggy wrote a review...



Hey friend! :)

I read this a few days ago and I was meaning to leave a review but I got busy, so now here I am. Let's get started.

Breath caught in her throat from the beauty.


I feel that "air" would be more appropriate than "breath" here, just because it sounds funny written like this.

I found some spots that were missing a comma, so I suggest reading through and adding them in where you deem fit, if you want to. Other than that, I didn't find any other grammatical mistakes worth mentioning.

In all honestly, the ending left me a bit confused and unsatisfied. I might've not been reading this the way you intended it to be read, or I may have misunderstood some things, but I'm unsure of some things. For example, what's going on with the prince? I think it may have been the way you wrote this -- elusive and mysterious. Not that that's a bad thing! It just leaves me wondering about some things that I feel weren't very clear. I can't tell if the prince is a good guy or not? First, Emilee likes him, then his demeanor changes? And then she doesn't want him to touch her but then wants him to? I was a bit confused by that. It might just be me, but I thought it was worth mentioning.

Other than that, your narration is lovely and I enjoyed reading this. I think that your descriptions were beautiful and that you did a good job with writing this story. I loved reading this and seeing things from Emilee's perspective, and I like that we got to learn so much about her from just this one short story. Lovely work. :)

I hope this review helps a bit. xx




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Mon Oct 08, 2018 2:56 pm
manilla wrote a review...



Hi, Manilla here for a review. Let's get right into it, shall we?

--

The prose is so simple but so beautiful in this piece, and that was what drew me to it. You convey your meaning well through the lack of words. I have no nitpicks for this piece at all.

So it seems that a princess, who doesn't want to see a prince and despises being royalty, sees good in him. But I will pose this question - How does the title relate to the plot of the story? Is Emilee forever silent until this moment, unable to speak her mind? Or is this eternal silence always hanging around because she's royalty? Another small question - Would this story be classified as romance?

I also like the way the dialogue is presented to the reader in italics instead of the normal quotation marks. It gives a quiet, shushed feel to the scene, like everything is happening inside of Emilee's head.

Last set of questions - How does Emilee's thoughts and feelings throughout the story all connect to one another? How does the (potent) symbolism you present in the beginning of the story come to the end? You present such seemingly critical details that are only washed away in the end, but once again, that could be your purpose, like the lilac dress that was her grandmother's. There's also a well-written change from the pessimistic side of Emilee to when the Prince arrives, and she shoves those thoughts away. Then dust turns to gold.

That's all from me.
-Manilla out

(Feel free to disregard any comment you deem unhelpful or rude. That was not my intention.)




Noelle says...


Thanks for the review!

I have a question. There's something physically wrong with the princess. Do you know what it is? I think I put enough clues in, but I'm not sure.




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Who's the more foolish, the fool, or the fool who follows him?
— Obi-Wan Kenobi