Writing is a socially acceptable form of schizophrenia - E.L. Doctorow

Thursday, June 10, 2010

The Red Rose

I wrote "The Red Rose" for one of my literary courses this semester. Something I whipped up at the last minute, which is the case for most of my assignments. This one was a lot more fun to write though since it was creative writing and not academic. We had to write a short story based from a fairy tale and I did my favourite Beauty and the Beast. It also has elements of the gothic and uncanny in their, which you will easily spot out. So, here it is....

I slammed the front door in my Mother’s face. This was a new low for her; drunk at seven in the morning. “Beauty,” she screeched. I couldn’t stay there—with her—anymore.

I walked down the crumbling sidewalk, away from my home.....

I found myself not heading for school, but to the other side of town, where the houses spelled old wealth. My feet had a habit of bringing me towards there, though I always firmly stayed away due to my Mother’s warnings. For the first time in my life I would disobey her.

My feet brought me to a dead end. Before me stood a massive pair of wrought iron gates, beginning to peel with decay. Peering through the gate I saw such a sight! A magnificence of roses decorated the garden; reds, yellows, pinks. The sun beating down gave the roses a slight glow. I had to see one up close. Everything else was lost to me, including the old gothic structure behind the beds of roses. Gargoyles stood at each end of the four metre gates. They were meant to scare me, but how could I be scared when such beauty lived inside.

Pushing on the gates I managed to nudge some movement out of them and create a space just big enough for my small frame to fit through. Upon entering the garden I was immediately drawn to the centre where a circular bed of red roses stood. In haste I made my way over to the roses.

Once I arrived at the bed of roses my hand went—of its own accord—to touch one. The petals felt so soft and smooth in my fingertips. I couldn’t resist leaving without this masterpiece. I picked the rose.

“Grrr how dare you disturb my garden. I give you such pleasure and you repay me by destroying it.” I startled at the grizzly voice. After dropping the rose I spun around and saw a beast step out of the shadows of the arching gothic structure.

“I...I...I’m sorry,” I managed to stammer out.

His body was covered in a thick brown fur. His mouth was turned into a growl, bearing all sharp teeth. I got a shock of knowing as his eyes pierced mine, but it was immediately forgotten on his next growl of annoyance. “You will repay me for your destruction. For that one rose you will grow me ten more in its place.”

“But, I don’t know how to grow roses as beautiful as these.”

“I’ll teach you,” the beast said his mood softening.

I agreed to the beast’s request. It was only fair since I had ruined something that I had no right in ruining. He told me that I should come promptly to his mansion every morning to begin my repayment to him, otherwise there would be consequences. I was in no position to fight the beast before me, but I did ask about school. Which he responded to thus, “As most of the morning is already gone it seems you will not miss the tedium that is school.” My response was a glad one for I did not like the low rate school I attended near my home. It was full of delinquents. I then left the beast with the firm notion that I must see him the next morning.

The next day I found my feet once again brought me easily and swiftly to the beast’s mansion. Though his looks were not something of fairy tales, I knew I would get used to them as I saw him more. I did as the first week went by. The beast had a kind nature, helping, patient. I was not an easy student, but he never gave up on me and his roses.

Everyday he offered me lunch, which I gratefully took in the garden with him. After lunch, like clockwork, everyday, he asked for my hand in marriage. The first time I was shocked, however like his beastly looks I got used to his question, which I firmly rejected.

One day he allowed me inside his mansion. Near the front door stood a table with photos of what looked like to be a young family. I asked the beast who the pictures where of and he replied, “My heart”. I took a closer look and on expectation found the little girl in the pictures looked exactly like me. I was baffled by the uncanny resemblance. I never remembered my father...


  1. The imagery was very pretty and I enjoyed reading it!

    I used to love Beauty and the Beast but it's been years since I've seen it...

  2. Great story, Bec, but I just wanted to point out one tiny error you might have made...When you wrote, "Though his looks WHERE not something of fairy tales, I knew I would get used to them as I saw him more." It should be "were" not "where," I believe.

    The story sounded great and could probably be expanded into more than just a short story. Do you have any plans on making this a longer piece?

    Lastly, I would just like to thank you personally for becoming a follower on my blog! :)

  3. Thanks, Amanda and Vatche for your comments on my story.

    I fixed that mistake you picked up Vatche. Thanks for pointing that out :)

    In my mind I had this set as a longer story and I could expand it a lot more. But, I've got another story right now running around in my head that I'm thinking of starting this holidays when I get the time. So, if I do end up expanding it I don't think it will be for some time.

    And thanks for following me too Vatche :)

  4. Great story. beautiful imagery. Loved it!

  5. Whenever you get back, I have an award for you at my blog! Come see! :D

    (look for The Versatile Blogger Award label on the right)