All The World's a Stage Pt 1

9.4K 431 20

Ophelia stood in front of a mirror and had no other choice but to laugh. It felt strange to her, the rumbling that started in her belly and travelled up her chest to burst out of her lips. She felt so weak in her body and yet this laugh had a full and hearty quality to it that she had personally lacked for far too long. Then again, it had been QUITE some time since she’d had a reason to laugh like this. Ophelia was going to the Fall Ball. In costume, to help put in motion a dastardly plan to help her niece out. In a very dramatic move, Grace and Ophelia had spent the better part of the week assembling a costume in a hurry for Ophelia to wear. In fact, they were so busy that Opi had actually forgotten that tonight she had planned to kill herself with Nate as witness. And now Ophelia stood in the mirror with a smile on her face and laughter echoing in the room, all due to a slap in the face and a costume of Ursula from The Little Mermaid.

“Now that’s what I like to hear.” Grace said from the door way, a smile stretching across her face as she looked at her aunt’s costume. Ophelia was too skinny to be the large octopus from the Disney movie, so instead they went with a slinkier look. A tight, almost liquid looking silk dress that had black ribbon and wire tentacles trailing in a train behind, with one linked to her wrist so it ghosted in the air, echoing the movements of her arm. Her pale hair was pulled up and the stylized makeup crafted on her features. Grace had her own version of the Ariel costume on. A mermaid style green skirt and a purple bandeau top that left her abdomen bare. Ophelia could see her niece in that awkward stage between wanting to flaunt her slender form and being embarrassed to have so much skin revealed. The girl’s natural red hair had made her costume choice super easy.

“Yes well, I have to admit that this was not what I had in mind for today. But I think this is by far more preferable.” Ophelia admitted with a satisfied tone.

“I cannot wait to see how Colby looks in the Flounder costume!” Grace was laughing and Ophelia had to smile softly as well. She desperately wanted to see how he looked as well.

It felt strange to be caught up in this, to steal a seaman’s term, fish net of scheming. Grace and Ophelia were planning on forcing Nathaniel to turn up for the night, capitalizing on his owning Colby a favour. And his protective urge to be there for both women. It would all but guarantee the younger man’s attendance. It had necessitated filling Colby in on some details, and the man seemed mighty smug about the whole endeavour. Nathaniel would probably be quite vex with them for exposing his interests in Grace to the man, but Ophelia only felt it fair since he had in turn exposed her secrets to Grace.

“I can hear the gears in your brain grinding. Stop thinking so much! This is going to be a great night. Now smile and let’s go downstairs. It takes me forever and a day in this kind of skirt. Unless I trip, then it’s an awfully quick descent.” Grace joked, having to take mincing steps in the tight skirt.

“At least you don’t have to worry about accidentally knocking people over with your backside.” Ophelia pointed out as she had to maneuver the staircase with her tentacles and train.

“You seem to forget Auntie O, that I have a fantastic ability to do random gravity checks on the floor, against walls, tables, people….” Grace joked as she carefully crept down the stairs.

“Point conceded.” Ophelia retorted as the doorbell rang. This would be it then. This would be Colby at the door. And despite her calm and composed exterior, Ophelia couldn’t help but feel the girlish flutter in her abdomen of excitement and anticipation. She really was too old and sick for this kind of romantic silliness and yet her body seemed to determined to respond to that small part of her that still wistfully hoped.

Ophelia held herself back, partly to conserve her energy for this would be a long evening with her so weak, but also partly because she wasn’t entirely sure how she would respond to Colby’s attire. The costume had originally been Nathaniel’s; a tuxedo in the colours of Flounder the Fish with his hair dyed that strangely electric blue. It had been altered to fit Colby like it was made for him, and the shade of blue he donned in his hair was oddly attractive, making his pale eyes look icy in comparison.

Aces Wild (House of Cards Series 4)Read this story for FREE!