17: Magic and Shadows

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                                     (A/N: Sorry for the late upload! Thanks for understanding! :) )

                                                                  17: Magic and Shadows


"...One was called snow-white, and the other rose-red." (Snow-White and Rose-Red, Grimm Brothers)




        My mouth is dry and my throat is tight as I stare up at the girl. Her tanned face is drenched in moonlight. Her wide and curious ruby eyes study me as though I'm a new creature she's discovered.

         “H-Hello.” I force the word out of my parched mouth. Even the simplest of words cut sharp lines on the inside of my sensitive throat. “I'm, uh...I'm sorry.”

         The girl stoops down so that we are at the same eye level. Her dark hair spills over her shoulders in black, wavy rivers. A small and delicate hand reaches forward, stopping just short of touching my forehead.

           She speaks. “Why are you apologizing to me?” Her voice is not at all how I imagined it to be. Although her thoughtful eyes are wrapped in an intelligence beyond her seemingly young years, her face is soft and sweet, like an innocent child's. Her voice is like her face: kind, soft, and careful.

          “I w-was staring at you and your companions. I'm very sorry. That was rude of me,” I mumble while rubbing at the blisters forming on my feet.

         “That's alright,” the girl tells me with a kind smile. She holds out her hand. “Do you need help standing up?”

         “Y-Yes, please.”

         I hold out my hand, cursing it for shaking so. The girl grabs onto it and lifts me up with ease, nearly ripping my arm from it's socket. I grit my teeth together as I find my footing, hoping she doesn't notice the pained look on my face.

         She releases my hand, oblivious to the pain she's caused me. “Better?” she asks with a small smile.

         “Yes, better,” I say, returning the smile while nursing my sore arm. “Thank you very much.”

         The girl nods once, twice, thrice, before she crosses her arms over her chest. She tilts her head to one side before cocking it to the other. Her dark eyes flicker over my appearance, seeming to be scanning my soul. I lower my eyes, content to play with the folds of my mucky dress.

         Finally, the girl ends her brief evaluation of my appearance. “What's your name?” she questions.

         “Mor-Morgana,” I inform her. “I have no surname to give.”

         Her eyes blink rapidly, as if something's occurred to her.

       “Either have I,” she says, her voice low and mumbling. She taps her lips, as if she's just realized this herself. After a few moments of watching her ponder, I clear my throat. She snaps out of her thoughts and turns to look at me.

         “What's your first name, then?” I ask with a smile.

         “Oh, yes. I am Zenobia,” she replies with a curtsy.

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