Little Red Roses
The skin of her leathery face shown as pasty grey behind the blood red of her matte lips. The muscles around her mouth quaked as they formed a smile exposing teeth that seemed to horde together.
Aideetha, was not the loveliest, not the fairest, nor did she claim to be, never mind even attempting, not when grace-on-legs, Winter’s Red, strolled about Ithandale.
The trouble that came with being the fairest was something not worth its weight, although remedying it was worth its weight and then some in golden coins.
Aideetha watched Winter’s Red as she moved, noticed the eyes of men turning to follow the sway of her full hips while their heads remained looking forward. It would be trouble for the man whose wife caught him trailing Winter’s Red with his gaze. And many had found that trouble, having been knocked temporarily blind by knuckled fists to each of their eyes.
The women of Ithandale were not to be trifled with.
No, Aideetha was not such a beauty, but she was thorough and precise, holding a beauty and a bite all her own, just like little red roses.
She took one last plug from her apple, leaving jagged marks where her teeth had sunken into its flesh, and tossed the remains in a patch of snow. Adjusting the hood of her cape on her head, she proceeded to follow the swaying hips of Winter’s Red down the lane and deep into the woods.
Dusk was fast approaching and with it its shadows, grand for Aideetha to lurk within. The absence of daylight would not be such an issue for her, not with a full moon in bloom that eve, and Winter’s Red donning a crimson cape that looked like blood against the pure white snow.
The imagery was poetic, or was it prophetic. Aideetha nearly howled with laughter.
Deeper into the woods they went deeper, deeper, and deeper still until none else could be seen, and no one could hear the scream or the howl as Winter’s Red drew her last breath and lay frozen as the earth beneath her.
Aideetha shifted beneath her cloak and waited, waited until she smelled her scent long before she saw her, her voice like wind chimes, deceivingly sweet. “Now I am the fairest of them all.” The youthful face framed with raven black hair whispered with far to much glee as she stared down upon her dead rival.
“Indeed,” Aideetha answered. “You are fairer than the whitest of snow.”
Icy blue eyes met that of the wolf that Aideetha had remained. She would change again shortly. She was far prettier as a wolf. Looking at the young woman whose skin was white as snow she extended her thick fury neck. “My payment.”
“My payment as promised for making you the fairest of them all in the land of Ithandale.” She stretched her neck further.
The young woman began to laugh. “You have not made me the fairest. I am the fairest! I owe you nothing.”
With a swipe as quick as lightening Aideeth laid the girl upon her back. Sniffing around her cooling frame she found what she was looking for. Without a second thought for the two who laid pretty amid snow and ice, she pranced away, paied in full, as the fairest of them all lay in pools of speckled blood like little red roses against the snow.
This was a very dark tale, one in which I have married several different fairy tales. For what it is worth, I hope you liked it. I find it curious that I have written about another werewolf. To read a previous, and yet completely unrelated tale, titled Quake click HERE.