The Dance

by Valley Fey/Pinprick
originally published at 12:46PM on Friday, April 18, 2008

We were quickly drawn into an entryway, we were told to dance. They gave us longer, gauzy veils to cover all but our eyes. Our hair was released, spiraling down our backs in ways unaccustomed to us. A lion trotted by, turning its monstrous head to stare at us with wise green eyes. He was trapped here, too.

We were ushered in, one by one, still chained. I was third in the row of five. Peony and Rose entered before me, and Lily and Ivy behind. When I was shoved into the room, I stood blinking in the doorway. Tiny green tiles paved the way before me, with swirls of blue and silver throughout. Larger blocks of marble at the sides of the room made up a floor covered by people in the simple and elaborate, loose-fitting garb of nobility.

A woman with a golden headdress, woven in to her sun-colored hair, caught my eye. I began to dance for her. Small waterfalls rolled down sections of one wall, the other held huge mirrors. I couldn’t bear to look at that wall, to see what I’d become.

Before me lay the throne.