Pssst! Hey you. Come here. Comeherecomeherecomehere.
Have you heard the rumors? They say that the Princess-
Yeah Snow White, they say that ever since her father died that she's...
Not right. Not right in the head.
They say she talks to animals.
Have you ever heard of such a thing?
Shhhhh! Shhhhhshhhhshhh. Here she comes!
The foot of my gown flutters against my legs and the sound of my heels reverberate off these castle's walls as I stride by a couple of serving girls.
They duck their head in what they consider to be a decent enough bow. Someone should have taught them better, but I suppose someone probably did; however, they've gotten lazy.
They've gotten complacent in their time under the King. Someone should remind them.
Someone should have them bent at the knee until they remember how they are supposed to act if royalty graces their presence. Someone will have to do just that.
However, they start to scuttle away as if they have been dismissed. As if I hadn't heard their whispers all the way down the hall. So it's already started.
The rumors about the princess are spreading around this place like wildfire. It would be easier to squash the rumors if they weren't true, if that damned girl didn't keep spouting nonsense.
It would be a lot easier if she just kept her mouth shut instead of me going around and having to snuff out each little rumor as it starts, just like snuffing out a candle.
At this rate I would run out of servants. Snuffing them all out one by one as soon as their lips start feeling loose.
I commit those girl's faces to my memory. They would learn soon. Everyone would learn, no, remember soon who is in charge. Who they answer to. Who is their Queen.
But not tonight. Tonight I am tired, I think as I enter my room. Sleep will come swiftly tonight and for that I am grateful. However, not before I talk with my advisor.
"Magic Mirror on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?" I ask the mirror every night.
I don't know why I still do this, I know the answer, it's the same every night but I take joy in hearing the answer said out loud.
It's nice to know at least someone respects who they are talking to.
And why should I not revel in the fact that I am the fairest in all of my Kingdom? I am the Queen, and should the queen not be the fairest of all her subjects?
Why, it would be shameful if she were not.
At least those were my thoughts before the mirror spoke. At first, I was sure I misheard the words, so I asked again.
The second time the words were clear and precise, but that didn't stop me from asking a third and fourth time.
"My Queen," The Magic Mirror always started, the first time it answered the question I was sure that this was the completed reply, but he was not done, "Snow White is the fairest one of all".
I asked again a fifth and even a sixth time and each time I heard the mirror's answer I became more angry.
However, that didn't stop me from asking a seventh and eighth time,
letting my anger build up in me until I was inches away from the face in the mirror and asking the question through gritted teeth.
It didn't matter though, no matter how loud or how close I was or even how angry I was, and even though the mirror's face was a grimace of fear it never gave me the answer that I wanted.
Despite what I told myself earlier tonight I couldn't get what the Magic Mirror had said out of my mind that night.
Snow White? Really? I told myself to put it out of my mind and to get some sleep. Tomorrow would be different, the answer would be different.
Tomorrow I would, once again, be the fairest of them all and no one would ever speak of this day. But my sleep was restless from the voice of the Magic Mirror saying Snow White again and again.
Snow White is the fairest one of all.
Snow White is the fairest.
Fairest one of all.
Hey! There you are!
Have you heard?
Yeah! It's true, the Princess came running in sometime in the early morning.
It was still dark out, for heaven's sake.
Did you hear what she was telling people when she came in?
You always miss the best parts.
She was crazy.
She was telling anyone that would listen, that she had been gone for weeks!
Yeah that's what she said, weeks.
And that it was because the Queen,
Uh huh, the Queen,
Sent a hunter to carve her heart out!
That's what I said!
Who would want a human heart anyway?
But that's not all.
Then she says when she was running from the hunter, she ran into the forest and there were evil trees.
As soon as the light shone through my windows I threw away my bed covers. Try as I might I couldn't stop my heart from beating just a little faster than usual.
I sat on the edge of my bed, waiting, for what I am not sure; maybe I was waiting for my world to right itself or maybe I was just waiting for the sleep to clear from my mind.
No, no longer would I wait for things to make themselves right, and no longer would I wait for my answer. Queens do not wait.
Queens certainly do not accept an unacceptable answer, and I wouldn't either. With that determination in my mind I stalked over to the Magic Mirror.
As much as I might want to, I would not run, Queens did not run. I certainly would not run because of the thought that Snow White, of all people, was allegedly the fairest of them all.
"Magic Mirror on the wall, who is the fairest one of all?"
The Mirror did not answer. For a minute I thought that maybe I was in front of the wrong mirror. All that I could see in the mirror was my own reflection.
For a moment, just a moment, I felt nervous. Afraid that this mirror had lost its magic and that I had lost my touch. Afraid that Snow White really was the fairest one all.
A queen is not afraid. A queen is never afraid.
I wouldn't let it happen. Not Snow White. Snow White is not the fairest one of all. If the Magic Mirror says so again, then there are always things that can be done about that.
"Magic Mirror on the wall, I ask again, who is the fairest of them all?"
I did what I could to mask a sigh of relief that escaped from my lips as the Magic Mirror swirled into existence. I waited but still it said nothing.
In that moment I wanted to shatter the Magic Mirror and then stare into its tiny shards and ask my question once more. But I would not.
"Magic Mirror," I made sure to punctuate my words so that I got the mirror's full attention. "Who is the fairest one of all?"
I stared intently into the mirror's face, waiting for the answer that I desired. Today would be different. Today I would be the fairest of them all. I am the fairest.
I am the fairest of them all.
"Snow White is the fairest one of all."
Did you hear that they put the princess on bedrest?
Yeah after the incident with the evil trees she started muttering about little men that lived in the woods.
Um, I think she said there were like seven of them or something?
She says that she lived with them for weeks.
She wasn't even gone for a full day.
But she swears up and down that she lived with those little men for weeks.
She says that they sang songs,
And they were miners or something.
Yeah I don't know.
Because I was there! That's how I know!
I was too!
Who do you think found her like that?
Yeah, it was me.