It is the Beautiful Bird which gets Caged

There is a Chinese proverb which goes a little like…

Chinese Proverb - beautiful bird gets caged.

…this is where the story begins…

The sounds of the crowds drew her attention first. The excitement, the cheering, it could only mean one thing. The royal party was passing through. Cece pushed out the shop doorway to stand in the street where crowds now aligned each side. She was small framed and fit through the swarms of people to make her way to the front.

As the Royal train approached, she caught her breath, the beauty was beyond words. The musicians announced the approach. The Royal guard arrived first, their heads held high, their uniforms crisp and the horses held strictly in line. As each passed by the crowds pushed further and further forward.

The Royal carriage arrived next with the queen proudly waving from the window. The crowd leant further again. Cici found herself getting crushed, her breath drawing short, she gulped for air. As the carriage passed by the crowd finally gave way but on release Cici fell forward and collapsed to the ground, the rough surface shredding the skin of her arms. A sigh escaped from the crowd, and as Cici sat up cradling her aching arm, strong hands began helping her to her feet. To her astonishment, it was the prince.

“Are you okay?” concern filled his anguished gaze but Cici found her throat completely dry staring into his deep dark green eyes. After a few minutes, silence embarrassment filled her.

“Sorry, yes. Fine thank you.” Cici stammered. As she spoke a guard came towards them and Cici glanced up noticing the royal carriage ahead had also stopped. The queen was staring straight at Cici, her face a mask of fury.

“Sorry miss, we’ll need to move you. Lady Propensus is about to arrive.” Cici rushed to her feet, as the guard spoke. She nodded and made her way from the road back to the crowd. As she did, the prince grabbed her arm and whispered something in her ear. She wasn’t quite sure what it was and the prince walked away then effortlessly swung his body back onto the horse before she could ask him to repeat it, but it sounded like, “I hope to see more of you.” As he turned the horse to ride on, he gave one last wink to Cici, causing her to blush immensely.

As Cici turned to find her way back in amongst the crowd she felt eyes heavy upon her, uneasy she glanced around. Although most eyes, had now moved back to the prince a few gazed upon her, but it was the steely unmoving gaze of the queens stare that had caused the fearful feeling in Cici, turning her blood cold as she pushed her way through the crowd and back to the shop. It was only once inside she heard the queen bark the order for the carriage to move on.

 

Caged image by Sue Vincent.png

Caged photo courtesy of Sue Vincent

 

Several weeks passed and the town was full of excited whispers. No-one saw Cici pickpocket the prince, but the queen swore she had. All of that was forgotten in the frenzied excitement as the prince and his new bride rode down the street. The prince felt the guilt heavy in his stomach. The lady was no looker, not like the fallen beauty who had captured his heart a few weeks before, but the queen had assured him that was not to be his fate and taken care that it never could be. The secret of the innocent beauty was his burden to bear, the only way the queen would grant him his kingdom.



Originally written in response to Sue Vincents #Writephoto challenge – Caged!
Use the image to create a post on your own blog… poetry, prose, humour… by noon (GMT) Wednesday 17th August and link back to Sue’s post with a pingback. KL❤

The Truth is not Always Beautiful…

Helen peered through the ornate metal fence posts. Her mother had forbidden her to go near the old house.

It was strange, her mother told her. Her mother also said the old man that lived in it was strange too. Yet that didn’t stop Helen from staring. She thought the house was beautiful.

“Hi there”. The voice startled her and she strained to see where it was coming from. Glancing around she spotted through the fence an old stooped man behind the wall below the fence. His hands caked in mud had clearly been planting in the flower bed. Helen’s mind flashed with panic, she wasn’t meant to talk to strangers but he had seen her now, it would be rude to ignore him.

“Hi,” she said quietly and then removed her hands from thfence with rosese fence.

“Admiring my garden?” the old man said then gestured the flower beds. She nodded, not really sure what to say. She hadn’t, it had been the house she was admiring. Helen watched the old man intently, looking for the darkness that her mother believed he had. Yet all she saw was kindness, could her mother be wrong?

“Do you want to come inside?” he asked. Helen’s eyes grew wide, she knew she should say no, it was what her mother would want her to do, but the old man with the kind crinkled face couldn’t be anything to worry about could he? She nodded and he got to his feet, pointing towards the entrance gate and then began brushing off the dirt from his trousers.

“Helen!” Helen stopped dead in her tracks, then began to turn around slowly as the piercing shrill of her mother’s cry filled the air. As Helen turned she spotted her mother stood hands on her hips, her face red with both anger and exertion. Oh dear.

                “Never mind skulking, get over here now! I told you not to doddle home.” Helen took one last glance at the beautiful big house, the old man seemed to be gone. Ignoring her disappointment she traipsed towards her mother. Maybe the old man would let her look another day…


“The truth is not always beautiful, nor beautiful words the truth.”
― Lao Tzu, Tao Te Ching


Originally written in response to #WQWWC theme – Beautiful. The above quote seemed too fun not to play around with. What do you think? Did mother know best?

#Maydays Prompt – Something Stupid

“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and it may be necessary from time to time to give a stupid or misinformed beholder a black eye.”
― Jim Henson

Facepalm statue

For today’s #maydays prompt time for a bit of humour. We’ve all had that friend (or been that friend!) who has drunkenly declared someone (usually sober) to be the most gorgeous person they have ever seen. The situation may be cringeworthy, funny or even painful if they end up with a slap. It’s over to you may you remember/discover/imagine someone doing something stupid that they later realise wasn’t the best idea. Double points if you make us laugh!

Remember you can write a memory, short flash fiction, poetry or whatever may take your fancy and pingback here so that I can pop by and visit you. Don’t forget to TAG your prompt #maydays too.

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#Maydays Prompt – Beauty is in the hand of the penholder

“No matter how plain a woman may be, if truth and honesty are written across her face, she will be beautiful.”
― Eleanor Roosevelt

keep calm and love your body

For today’s #maydays prompt I want you to write about someone that is truly beautiful to you (or your character if you are doing fiction).

Remember you can write a memory, short flash fiction, poetry or whatever may take your fancy and pingback here so that I can pop by and visit you. Don’t forget to TAG your prompt #maydays too.

Maydays logo



Thanks to those who contributed to yesterday’s #Maydays prompt all about Girls, Girls, Girls:

Best Friends – ladyleemanila

#Maydays Prompt – Let’s hear it for the girls | Morpethroad

Maydays: Poem – Free Verse – “Delicate and Strong”  – Mandibelle16

Not For Girls | new2writing