Posted in Life and After, Twisted Tales

The Apple of Discord: The Hunter

Being the Queen’s favourite has its perks and the food at my home is an ode to the fact that I owe her everything I have. For years, I have hunted animals and humans alike.

This child has seen only seven seasons, that too while living in rags and mopping the castle floor. She is a princess who has been lower than a servant. Today, when I brought her to the forest, she was overjoyed. She’s singing to the birds as she plucks wildflowers for a garland. My daughter does the same.

Today, she says, is the best day of her life. I know better. Not sure what wrong she has done and why the queen is against her. But I am just a soldier, a tool to kill all those who displease the crown. The queen desires the little girl dead and her wish is my command. Yet, my hand shakes today as I clutch the hilt of my sword.

No way can I kill her but I cannot take her back and risk the queen’s wrath.

I pull out my sword with shaking hands and call her to look at me. She looks at me with scared doe-eyes and pleading silently. My sword lowers on its own, as if I’ve lost all my strength.

I yell, “Your mother wants you dead. Run away before I kill you!”

In my heart, I plead, “Run away before I give up and return you to the castle, to the step-mother who’d kill you anyway. Run away before I stop being a monster and become a traitor to the crown.”

I watch as she runs deep in the forest; glad I didn’t have to kill her; afraid she’d die alone. I hunt a boar and take his heart to the monster in the castle as a proof of Snowdrop’s death, hoping she won’t find out the truth before I move my family to another town.

I wonder why I ever thought she is beautiful.


Photo by Ricardo Cruz on Unsplash

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Author:

I am an Instructional Designer, avid reader, small-town woman and working mother with a fish-eye perspective. I have just published my first book, The Forest Bed and other short stories. If you like my stories on this blog, feel free to Like, Comment, Reblog and Share. You can reach me at shailygrwl@gmail.com or through my Facebook page facebook.com/shailyagrawalwrites/

12 thoughts on “The Apple of Discord: The Hunter

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