Misfortune

A form of retell of Cinderella.
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4. 04.

Lily exhaled in relief as she found her knife and smiled before bringing herself back up into a straight stance. The prince had seen the flash of blonde appear against the length of the trees trunk; the same blonde hair he had not stopped seeing since last night.

"I know you are there." The prince made himself ready as he knew she was smart. She had to be smart to get away with stealing from the royal family. Lily held her breath and mover her hair to cover most of her face, once again, as well as adjust her mask and grip on the knife. It was not everyday she got caught.

Today and yesterday just are not in my favour. She peered herself from behind the tree slowly, looking around, knowing her best defence and attack of her surroundings.

"You again." Lily's head found itself lying its gaze on the prince, looking him over, unable to register where she had apparently seen him before. "You know, I have been dying to meet you." He waved his sword in the air, drawing circles as he neared her. "It is not everyday I am intrigued by a female, you know."

Lily looked him over, trying to distinguish his features, but found it hard to recognise him until her eyes landed on his. When she realised who it was, a giggle released itself through pushing her lips apart before she could register what was happening, leaving the prince looking lost, but enjoying the sound. She sounds so much better than Princess Alexia.

"My apologies," Lily tried sobering up from her laughter to pronounce the words. "For having such an awful name." She coughed and covered it with a fisted hand. "But I must congratulate the young prince on surviving so long with the name." Another laugh spilt through her lips but was able to cut it short. "But I must ask, how did you acquire the name, Wilbert?" Her cheeks were hurting from the smile on her face as she tried controlling her laughter.

The prince had not focused on the words she had said, he was too interested in listening to her laugh and watching her smile, and the way his name sounded from her lips.

"Will, are you alright?" Lily had not realised they were not alone, but remained where she had, whilst cutting off her laughter completely.

"No, please do not stop laughing, even if at my expense." The prince walked closer to her, struck sharply by her beauty, ignoring his friend calling him.

"I-I-I must go." Lily stuttered as she could almost feel the prince's skin on her own, through her clothes. "Your friend is after you." She bowed and ran quickly away from the prince who just stood, bewildered as he watched her retreat from him, once again.

"Will, who was it?" Connor placed a hand on the prince's shoulder, the girl now completely out of his sight.

Lily had not dared looking back over her shoulder where the prince remained standing as she escaped. You are so stupid, she screamed at herself in her mind as she made her way back to the mansion, back to safety.

"I do not know the name that belongs to her, but she is the one I must marry." There was a slight pause between the two men. "Who lives on the other side of this forest?"

"The Williams' household, I believe are the only ones who are living in that way. Why do you ask, Will?" Connors face scrunched up, showing his confusion at the princes' sudden interest.

"We must visit there, before the ball. I wish to walk into the ball with her on my arm."

Lily walked into the mansion quietly, creeping up to her room to get changed so Clarice did not realise she left.

"As you say, Will. We shall drop by within the two hours that home themselves before the ball is due to start, so you can find out if the girl lives there and get ."

Lily's mind would not release her of the punishment of seeing the prince's face permanently as she got changed and raced to the kitchen once she heard the clock chiming thirteen times. It was time for lunch.

"Lily, I want leak soup." Shelby declared the second Lily stood in her sight.

"I want chicken, Lily. Do mine first!" Margaret demanded as Lily placed the chopping board onto the table before searching for the vegetables she would require.

"Tomato for me Lily!" Betty pitched in, all of them demanding but not helping in any way, other than not standing in the way. They watched as Lily searched the room for what was required.

"Lily, hurry up!" Shelby demanded. It took her a few minutes, along with three different pots, to create the soups she had known how to do without any sight. Whilst they ate, she cleared the pots up, as well as the knives and the chopping board.

"Girls, are you done with your lunch? It is time for you to start getting ready. The ball is at seventeen strikes of the bell." Clarice chimed down the stairs to the kitchen.

"Coming mother." Margaret, Betty and Shelby chimed back in the same happy tone. Lily cleared up the dishes and wiped them quickly in the remaining bowl of water before rushing up behind them, readying herself to get the three of them ready in their gowns for the ball.

By the time the three girls filled their dresses, they almost made it impossible for Lily to move around to sort their hair out. Just as she finished Betty's hair, after redoing it three times, claiming it was too much like her sisters', Clarice appeared in the doorway.

"Wonderful work, Lily. Will you be joining us tonight? The pearls you supplied us with yesterday allowed me to send for a bigger coach than usual. And it would be such a shame to waste the space."

Would I be joining tonight? Lily had not give it much thought since returning home. Would I be able to keep up appearances and show I do not know the prince? Lily's mind worked over time creating scenarios and possible problems.

"Yes, Clarice. I would love to join you four." She smiled as Clarice presented three masks to her daughters. It was a masquerade ball. Lily's nerves had now calmed once realising she could be comfortable behind her mask.

"Splendid. We leave when the clock next chimes." The four of them left the room, leaving Lily to herself, getting ready for the ball herself with her dress. Once it was being filled by her body, she looked in the mirror. The black dress fit nicely and went well with her black slip on shoes she owned already.

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