By Elle Gordon, TIWP Student
Once upon a time there was a girl with a smile on her face and a monster in her heart. The monster slowly ate away at her as she waved to the struggling people in her kingdom with her perfect pink nails. She could not hear their cries for help. She was told to tune them out, but the monster inside her could not. She was being driven to her etiquette class today as it was a big day. She was going to meet her prince.
When she got there they told her, “The first thing that has to go is that awful laugh of your’s!”
They tried to teach her to giggle but the monster always twisted it into a putrid cackle. For every rule they put in place, the monster became more restless inside her.
When the clock struck seven, every rich man in a thousand-mile radius came swarming in. She curtsied at them almost robotically.
A 20-year-old prince, twelfth in line, came up to her, wrapping his cold sharp hands around her corseted waist. “I think you need to spend a little more time in the kitchen rather than eating from it,” he said through a smirk.
The monster grew angry. It punched her heart until the wall broke. The monster had been freed. A look of panic spread across the princess’s perpetually-smiling face. She felt the monster gain speed, collecting power from her silence as it climbed up her throat. She closed her eyes and bit down with all her might. This monster inside her could not ruin this. Victory against the monster was the hidden pain of a bleeding tongue.
Though the monster did not win the battle, it could travel now. It racked through all the manila envelopes in her brain making a mess of her usually organized sealed-away thoughts. With every word the monster gained more power, more curiosity. It roamed her body, first as a restful lump in her throat, then as the un-cried tears in her eyes, and finally in the constant butterflies in her stomach, telling her something was wrong. She stayed alert, quietly monitoring the monster between small talk and head nods. While the monster didn’t like the quiet, it grew in the quiet.
In the castle there was a dark hallway full of empty rooms. All the lights were off but one. She tried not to notice, but the monster wouldn’t let her look away. The monster now knew every detail the princess spent a lifetime trying to forget. The monster knew how to take power and was set on doing it.
The monster’s eyes widened and made the princess take a step towards the room. The princess knew what was about to happen. As she got closer, she tried to scream “No! Stop! Don’t do this to me you monster! Leave me alone! If I go through that door it’ll be the end of me!”
As soon as she touched the door knob, she would lose her power, her body, her mind, all handed to the monster.
“Please stop!” the princess’s glossed lips moved as she plead to the monster but all that came out was air. Tears came into her eyes, though she could not cry. The world was slowly changing. Her life as she knew it being destroyed by the monster within.
She resisted, but eventually touched the handle, giving the monster full rein of her. The monster and her stepped into the room where all the kings were drinking,
“Gotta rais’m taxes,” one said. “I barely got enough to keep my chef making my dessert every night.”
The monster was in an uproar. The princess, having no strength to fight back said, “No, they’re struggling enough!”
She gave in to the monster. She gave in to using her voice.