Thursday 6 August 2015

Thursday Tasters: Pandora 25

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The three made their way back to the Fortress, bringing it to them. It was very easy to find, when you were invited. Pandora was relieved she didn't find the corpses as well. Once there, planning began.
Pandora was sent into the garden, to trim back the verdant vegetation. It hadn't been tended regularly the entire time she had been there, but both her mother and Tabitha had agreed that a tidy exterior would be most welcoming to a princess who didn't know why she was trapped with a witch. Occasionally she used her magic to aid in the task, but for the most part it was labour-intensive. When she had finished the first day, she stumbled toward the bath, eager to wash off all the soil.
It was obvious when she entered that neither her mother nor Tabitha had needed to bathe. Pandora wrinkled her nose at the fouled towels and gritty grey water left in the tub. Grey-brown. She pulled the stopper and the water flowed into a channel that sloped down through the fortress, rinsing out the whole system of gutters.
As much as she wanted to simply refill it, the tub needed cleaning, or it wouldn't be effective. Using the ruined towels, she scrubbed away at the crusty ring left behind. Only as she knelt did she realize who would have left the tub in this state. Certainly neither Pandora nor Tabitha would leave it undrained and unclean. The prince must have washed here. She wished his bruises were still fresh and paining him that very minute. Her fury made her scrub harder and the ring was gone in no time.
A bucket sat under the spigot that drew water from the underground well. Pandora smiled, thinking about the nasty prince having to take a cold bath. She heated the water in the bucket prior to pouring it in the tub. She repeated the process for several bucket-loads and finally climbed in.
The water was too reflective. She saw her twisted hair, still brown, with leaves and twigs throughout. Sighing she raked her fingers through, slowly teasing them out. When she looked down next, she saw the prince again. He was with another woman, and his beauty was once again undeniable, even though dark blue and green blotches dotted his back and side. Pandora took some small pleasure in that.