Killed by a Rose
Twisted from Beauty and the Beast
Once again, the Beast was surprised to see the gangly, greasy thick strands of dark brown fur that covered his entire body in the mirror. He let out a low grumble, the breath from his nose causing the blood-red rose in his large hands to flutter, the one that the inferior villager’s daughter had attempted to steal. The one that if every one of the 17 crimson petals fell … he will remain as this repulsive beast. A wave of panic washed over him as he scrambled to see if any petals had fallen. He let out a weak sigh of relief when he saw the rose was intact.
He had no use for the girl in his current state. Current state. Like he actually had a chance of getting someone to say she loved him. He shook his head. It was easy for him as a charming, charismatic prince. But now he had no chance. It would never happen. He was too … ugly.
He walked weakly to the shined glass case, a drop of sweat trickling down his forehead. Fourteen petals were scattered in the case. Like fallen droplets of blood. A shiver went down his spine. Would he actually prefer to live like this? He had three petals left. Three petals to figure out a way. Or three petals to stay as a beast.
A crash from the hallway broke him away from his daze. He ran outside as quickly as his heavy beastly self could take him.
The shattered shards of broken vase lay scattered on the ground along with the flowers. The girl stood afraid with her hands to her mouth, her tears threatening to escape as her eyes shifted to the Beast.
At this moment, the Beast felt a sudden need to run away from himself. No one could bear to even look at him.
He couldn’t help himself as he cried out; his howl could be heard from miles away as he clawed at himself, droplets of blood falling onto the palace floor. Why did he have to be like this? Why him? And the girl just stood, too afraid to do anything. Too afraid of getting hurt. And the beast hated her more than ever. He hated her substandard village dress. He hated the smear of dirt that lay permanently on her face. He hated
of her being.
The Beast stretched his hand out and straightened the fork three seats away from him. He pulled at the bow tie around his neck, the tightness suffocating him. The multiple layers of clothing and fur sent beads of sweat trickling down every possible area on his body. He waited tensely for her to enter. He hoped that she had listened to what he said.
She was hardly recognisable as she shyly walked into the room with the golden dress falling in waves around her, embedded with red roses—to remind him of his plan. The sleeves lay lazily on her shoulders. Her hair was styled to perfection and she even had the courtesy to apply makeup on her face. Something she indubitably needed. She gave a small smile, which looked half thankful and half apologetic.
He smirked internally. If he were a prince, he would have appreciated her looks; however, he was not. And she was the only way that he could reclaim his throne. And his human form.
Every click from every step she took made him cringe; however, he sat straight; closed his eyes; and counted how many more aggravating seconds it would take for her to reach her seat and sit down.
His eyes opened when the clicking stopped and screeching of the chair sounded. He should have pulled out the chair for her. He huffed in frustration. He picked up a glass and the bottle of red wine, initiating to pour her a glass. His elbow hit a small vase he had used to decorate the table and the water inside poured out onto the carefully laid new tablecloth and drizzled onto her dress.
A small sound erupted from his mouth. “I’m sorry,” he said to himself. For losing his only chance. When he had only two petals left. She would never like him now.
“It’s okay,” a small girly voice said. His head snapped up to her. How could she bear to stand in front of him and not help him change to human form again? His hands started shaking from the boiling anger inside him, the wine threatening to spill out of the glass.
The girl lifted the vase and fixed the flowers inside it. She then tentatively took the glass and the wine bottle out of his hands, her eyes looking into his the whole time. She gently poured the rest of the glass and handed it to him.
He took it. Maybe he didn’t miss his chance. She poured herself a glass and sat back down, smiling at him. He tried his best to smile back. An awkward silence fell over them.
“What’s your name?” she said, trying to start conversation.
He thought for a second before saying, “Just call me Beast.” She nodded, like she was waiting for him to say something.
“My name’s Belle.” When he didn’t give a sign of any speech, she said, “So … what do you enjoy doing?”
He just glanced at her before going back to eating his food.
“I enjoy reading books,” she said slowly. He looked up at her again. This time pausing in his actions. “I don’t know how to read,” he said quietly. Her face brightened up. “I can teach you!” she said happily. The Beast looked surprised. No one had ever looked at his lack of knowledge of reading in such a nonjudgmental way.
He nodded. She scrambled out of the room and ran to her room to grab a book. And when she came back, she sat in the seat directly beside him. Her arm brushed against his and he snatched it away, like it burned him.
She didn’t notice. She just continued in her happy-go-lucky posture and helped him with the book. After a few minutes, she stopped and abruptly closed the book. “Your heart doesn’t seem to be in it. Let’s go for a walk around the palace.” She smiled and stood up.
He hated how she was so comfortable in the palace. In his palace. But he stood up anyway and went with her. They roamed around the halls silently, the stupid smile never leaving her face. That smile … Anger boiled inside of him. How could she bear to show him her happiness when he was stuck as a beast? Didn’t she feel guilty?
When they arrived at the ballroom she swayed her hips and twirled around, landing with one hand on his shoulder, and the other in his hand. He had a sudden feeling of disgust. However, he swallowed it up and kept her small hand in his. “Let’s dance,” she said.
He scoffed, but he put his hands reluctantly near her waist and moved with her, all the while keeping his hands a few millimetres away from her.
Suddenly, she tripped and fell forward, her body pressing onto his. He pushed her so hard that she fell onto the floor. He rubbed his hands on his clothes desperately, growling angrily. Like he was trying to get dirt off.
She stood up, tears falling from her face, as she ran out of the room hurriedly not wanting to be around him. And the Beast realised what he had done, and fell onto his knees, his head buried in his hands.
He heard her scream while he was strolling in the gardens. Panic flared through him. He looked down at his hair-covered arms and knew that if he didn’t find her, he would never live again.
Where was she?
A growl sounded through the flower beds. And then he was off. Running as fast as he could through the bushes, hoping that the savage wolves had not eaten her.
There were five, jumping on her and ripping at her clothes.
“Belle!” he cried, while jumping at the grey furry creatures that guarded his home.
He clawed their necks and legs off. Tearing them apart. Even after they were dead, he kept clawing at them until his arm started aching, furious that they were the reason that he may not ever be human again. Suddenly, he remembered Belle.
He ran to where the bundle of purple cloth lay. He gently lifted her head onto his lap in hopes that she would open her eyes. He brushed his hand over her hair, pleading with his eyes that she not be dead.
Her eyes fluttered open and she looked at him, her eyes watering.
And when she spoke, her words had been hardly a whisper. And if the Beast’s head was not bent so close to hers, he would have missed it.
“I love you.”
I love you.
He stood up so suddenly that her head crashed onto the ground. She groaned.
Pain pierced through him. He collapsed. It felt like his insides were burning. An unbearable stinging spread across his body. He clenched his teeth together and shut his eyes tightly. And slowly, like he was floating on water, he fell. Down down down, into the darkness.
When his eyes finally opened, he found himself lain beside the village girl. He lifted his hands and gazed at them longingly. A slow curdling laugh erupted from his chest. It continued until his stomach hurt.
“Beast?” The word made him stop abruptly. He stood up and looked at Belle with remorse and disgust.
“Don’t ever speak to me ever again.” He picked up her purple cloak and spread it on top of her, covering her from head to toe. He held his head high, a smirk plastered on his face as pride flowed through him. He didn’t need her anymore.
And then he walked back toward his castle, ready to reclaim the throne that once belonged to him.
Belle had never thought that anything of this sort would ever happen to her. She never thought that she would be the one, the quiet village girl who had never done anything to catch the attention of anything. As she stood on the platform looking into her worried father’s eyes, she remembered something that he had told her.
“Some stories end with glitter and rainbows, while others turn to shadows.”
She had always wondered how her story would end. And looking into those tear-filled chocolate eyes that she had inherited, she smiled sadly.
A drop of blood fell from the scar that the wolves had created.
At least all her misery would finally end. And when the guard tied a rope around her neck, a single tear fell from her darkened eyes. And while she gazed at Prince Adam’s prideful face that felt no guilt about his actions, she realised just how much damage a single cursed rose could do to so many people.