A Story by Penny Dreadful

Malicious exists as incorporeal at the most basic level; it is manifest as physical on the literal and active level. This malicious temptress, this She. She who has two faces: one smiles, a perfect complexion, straight white teeth, flawless in her composure; the second drapes her damp, dark hair over her scaly mottled skin, her teeth browning, her eyes bloodshot. Only one person ever glimpsed at the second face. 

She would take her pleasure in possessing the young lassies, taking them in the night while they slept; their backs bare and willing despite their ivory aplomb. The ones family saw as pristine, the ones they were proud to call their daughters, these were the ones She craved. They were always too kindly to assume harm from another, they always let pass into their rooms her breath, where it sat mulling for from weeks to months to years before the young plum would realise they did not hold the keys to the tractor any more. 

It never was some rare illness imported from foreign land in the back sacks of immigrants that caused her fall; nay, it was the foul soul disguised as divine that raped your daughter. The precious blossom sat high in her tower, the windows wide open so she could breathe in the freshness of the world, breathe in the scent of every knowledge and every land. Ah, bless her artless vista on humanity! She may have denied her innocence, the strong-headed lass, but such a dear can never see it for what it is until the time for retrospect. The obsession She had with the young love never seemed malicious until several years had passed; the honeymoon period was long gone and the cherub had withered into an husk, She growing more potent every moment that passed. 

What shall we name said damsel? Rosamund shall be her name; a picture of purity, innocence, love. Rosamund. 

Little Rosa, sat upon her quilts and cushions, had nothing but to better herself for her family. Be sure to listen to your lessons, said they. Be sure to perfect your comportment in the presence of others, said they. I shall, replied Rosamund. She was their ladder to high society and acceptance. An unavailing expedition, if you ask me, for all her mother would do is carp to the other puppeteer parents; human form at its lowest. 

But I digress now, I shan't keep you from your time. She would cling to Rosamund's existence like a gadfly to a filthy oxen. Settled in her pockets as she trotted to school, nestled in her hair as she mingled with peers by the river, by her side at the dinner table as she picked at her mother's dry roasted beef. She was eternal and omnipresent. Little did anyone know of her, though. Little did poor Rosamund know of her, though. My dear youngster was right where She wanted her. 

The gradual change in Rosamund made it nearly inconceivable for her family to notice anything peculiar. Her friends, eventually, would spot an inch or two of difference, her tutors showed concern, but never expressed to her parents, keeping it to themselves, being proper members of society; no one wants to be known as having spent too long a time observing a young lady. But this, sadly, is what She wanted. She knew the gentlemen wouldn't dare mention her pasty face and darkening eyes, and the ladies would certainly only make idle comments about her composure; "perhaps tie your hair in a different fashion, my love, it makes your face seem famished in this style," said they. 

It was at this point they left her to her own devices. Rosamund was at an age to fend for herself. Work. Study. Work. Study. Work. Work. Work. They had never planned for her to marry, she would never have made a good wife. Oh certainly she was an implacable maid, chef, and child-carer, but she lacked that certain edge that made a woman a good wife; that edge was now the blade She held in her hand. Rosamund would lay at night, listening to the squelching of Her feet as She moved across the floor towards her bed. 

The thud, the drip, the thud, the moan. The thick weight of Her as she reached Rosamund's bed was the greatest moment of terror. Thin spirals of sour breath circled around her arm, pulling the hairs up along the skin, dancing with them, playing with their minds. Frigid soldiers pinched her sides, quaking her body.  Gradually She stopped being separate from Rosamund, and they became as one. Her once genuine smile became a folly. 

Futile to attempt to help, I hear you cry. Leave the poor girl be, she hath suffered pleanty enough in her short life, she be on her way to a calmer place; if we just leave her in solitude with this creature of obsession she will be taken to rest. But her demise is not nigh! Do not stand by while she crashes. Do not leave her in the cold,  the ground upon which she lays is hard; an ideal planting space for Her roots. 

Come! Lift her! Heal her! The sepulchre is not yet sealed! 

© 2013 Penny Dreadful

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Added on August 29, 2013
Last Updated on August 29, 2013


Penny Dreadful
Penny Dreadful

Perth, Western Australia, Australia

I'm Lauren. Writing is my way of expressing all of my emotions, I don't really know how to do it physically without someone getting hurt. I am generally quite akward to be around. I like to keep to.. more..