Misfortune

A form of retell of Cinderella.
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1. 01.

She stood behind a tree, waiting patiently for the carriage to appear. The royal carriage was due to come through the forest and she had the step sisters appetite to feed. They had not possessed much. A mansion with the basics. And then a few more bits on the side. But they came from Lily's job. Her job that was their only source of income.

Just as Clarice had predicted, the golden yellow carriage had made its way up the forest trail, towards her hiding position, in the direction of the tree.

"Mother, I do not wish to get married." The prince explained to his mother, who had, once again, proposed the idea of him marrying. He had lost count as to how many times she had done so. However, this time had been different.

"We are not getting any younger, my boy. We wish to retire and we need you to do so. If you don't find a bride within the next few days, I shall set you up with Princess Alexia." His mother had always brought up the topic of marriage, but not of forcing the prince to marry else they would get one arranged for him. He had pulled a face at the thought of marrying Princess Alexia. Just the mention of her name brought chills to his spine. He could just hear the high pitched giggling as he said something, that had not been funny at all.

"Oh mother, have mercy!" He cried and begged as he tried to imagine his life tied down to her. He simply could not. Not the life he wanted anyway.

"Then attend the ball tomorrow night. And dance with every young lady that lives in this kingdom and choose the one you wish to have as a bride." He could tell by his mothers tone that it was not up for discussion, so he complied, bowing his head and sighed, wondering about what a horrid night it would be.

The coach neared her as she got into her stance, her knife in hand, her black tethered outfit sticking to her as she made sure her hair was down, covering as much of her face as she could, accompanying the mask her father had given her before dying a few years before. Her palms were sweaty. This had been her first time robbing from the royals.

Come on, Lily, you can do this. It is just another coach. She shook her head before smiling, slowing down her heart before climbing up the tree, the blades handle held in her teeth, and sat hidden on the branch, readying herself to fall into routine and landing on the roof of the carriage.

The thud caught the attentions of the Queen and Prince as they had found silence between them. They both looked at each other. The princes hand reached to his left, expecting his sword to be sitting, ready for him to use, but it was not. He groaned, annoyed at his weakness of letting his mother have him leave it at home in the castle, rather than have it on his person.

Lily balanced herself as the carriage drivers halted the white creatures pulling the metal. She listened for the foot steps that belonged to the man who was to check what happened, but nothing did. This caused curiosity run through her veins. She went to turn around, but did not fancy wasting time. Instead, she slipped down the rear end of the carriage, straight to the small amount of luggage they had brought from the palace as they headed to the castle.

Royals and their fondness for owning more than one home. Lily rolled her eyes before picking up the chest, head snapping in all directions, making sure it was not a trap.

"Who is it, son?" The Queen whispered, not an ounce of fear presence.

"I do not know, mother. We are both facing forward." His mother slapped his head.

"Do not be smart with me, son. Not now." He rubbed his head before turning around slowly and moving the curtain slightly with one finger, creating enough room for him to look through. His eyes went wide at the scene he caught. There had stood a girl with bright blonde hair surrounding her face, a black outfit that would be expected to be worn by a huntsman, a black mask and a matching pair of black gloves, with a blade resting calmly between her teeth.

"It's a girl. In black. Complete black. She's robbing us." The words found their own way out of the princes mouth without him even realising they had. Lily held the chest, ready to turn away and disappear in the forest, as she had so many times before, but she felt something stopping her. She looked around, inspecting around her at all angles, before noticing the curtain of the carriage had moved. She could clearly make out an eye. And it was staring at her. She looked at the eye with her own, almost frightened as to who owned the eye. She could tell it had been a male who had caught the glimpse of her at work.

The prince looked into the girls eye that stared back at his own, curious as to why she had been stealing, from the royal family no less. But once their eyes met, there was an invisible thread holding their gazes, not allowing them to pull away.

"I will be right back, Mother." He ignored any words his mother could have possibly formed to stop him, and exited the carriage.

The second his eye left the gap in the curtain, Lily ran straight into the forest, not looking back, feeling that she had been freed from the spell the eye had held over her, and leaving the prince bewildered and alone with his curiosity. He watched as she retreated, not allowing his eyes to peel away until she had no longer been in viewing distance.

"Wilbert, get back in this carriage this second!" His mother called loudly. He cringed as his given name was used loud enough for anybody to hear in the area, even the girl retreating from the spot he stood in.

Why could she not call me Bart or Will like most other people do? He retreated back to the carriage, but not before stealing one more glance at the direction the girl who had stolen from his family, wondering about her as they returned back to the Castle.

Lily had his herself in the dark of the forest, allowing herself time to give her lips permission to open and the laughter to poor out. Wilbert. She cried out in her mind as she doubled over. What sort of name is that for a prince? She allowed all the laughter to spill out as she held the handle of her knife in her hand, before slipping it back into its pouch and picking the chest from off the floor and returning home with the laughter still bubbling in the pit of her stomach.

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