So, I guess I got bit by the 350 word flash fiction bug and decided to create two more pieces. Don’t know what to do with them, so I believe I’ll share. Enjoy.
It was a simple thing, not even fancy, but if Margaret hadn’t seen it first hand, she would not have believed it. Mirela, the gypsy girl that caught the eyes of all the boys in town, told her it was a special hand mirror. She was always so sweet and cute, bright and smiling. She said it was the mirror that made it so. When Margaret pressed, Mirela finally relented and showed her, looking into it to reveal her reflection.
Margaret gasped. Mirela was even lovelier in that gleaming circle. The girl told her that it reflected you and gave you the chance to live a better life for it. She said she was once ugly, but the mirror changed all of that. Margaret pleaded to try it. If it did this for the gypsy then it must make her positively divine. But Mirela explained the mirror could only have one owner at a time and would not work for another.
And so it was that Margaret brought the girl to her family estate and struck her down with a stone from the garden. No one would miss a gypsy. As Mirela lay bleeding and dazed, Margaret picked up the mirror.
“You…don’t understand…” Mirela tried.
“You said I will live a better life, that it will make me even more beautiful.”
“Only…” Mirela’s words were beginning to trail away, not fast enough, Margaret thought. “Only…if you…understand…”
Margaret struck her again, shutting her up at last. She primped her golden locks, smoothed her pretty white dress, and raised the mirror.
“What is this?” she cried, but the dead do not respond. “I’m…I’m…no!”
She dashed the mirror to the cobbles, her shriek becoming a growl, then the roar of something out of nightmare. Her dress ripped, her golden curls fell away, bones shifted and popped. As silver shards reflected what Margaret had become, what she always was, the beast lumbered into the evening, roaring its lament into the sky, cursed with the shattering of the mirror to live as the horrid monster she truly was for eternity.
The Self-Replenishing Potion – or, the half-truths of advertising
“Only one silver and you, yes you, can transform into a faerie with this handy-dandy, self-replenishing magical potion!”
Kevin turned from where he watched glittering wings through a hole in the wagon that read, free faerie show, eyebrow raised. What he could do with a potion like that! He was already an excellent pickpocket, if he did say so himself. If he was one of those lithe creatures—a few of them were buxom too, and cavorting, giving him other thoughts!—there was nothing he could not get his hands on. Still, he was skeptical.
“You say it’s self-replenishing?” he asked, slipping his hand into a full purse he had stolen from the peddler earlier. Worst case, he’d pay for the snake oil from the swindler’s own pouch and still get away with a tidy sum when nothing happened. “If I take more can I change back?”
“Of course!” The peddler grinned.
“And just one silver?” The man nodded.
He handed over a silver coin, the peddler replacing it with a tiny bottle. “Satisfaction guaranteed.”
“You won’t mind if I try it now,” Kevin said, “just to make sure it works.”
The man shook his head, his smile ingratiating. Kevin uncorked the bottle, tipping it back. It was sweet, acrid, with a metallic tang he couldn’t quite—
Light glimmered around him and a flash blinded him. He rubbed his eyes, recovering too late to avoid the cage that clamped down over him. He tried the bottle, hoping to grow large, but it was empty.
“You said it was self-replenishing!” Kevin squeaked in a tiny voice, wings buzzing.
“I did indeed.” The peddler smirked. “And it is. For me. See, all I need to make it is a little powdered silver and faerie blood. And as a bonus, I get all the batter-fried faerie I can eat!”
The Peddler laughed as he locked Kevin’s cage in the wagon with the others.
“You didn’t think to grab his keys when you were stealing his money, did ya?” a faerie asked. Kevin sulked, lamenting his fate.