this mountain-dweller | S.W.

a mountain-dweller that the people cannot decipher. a violent, power-hungry queen plotting a crafted, artistic death for her. [a snow white story]

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She was dark. In that part of the country, they didn't know why she was dark. She had a silent, watchful anticipation on her face at all times. She watched the moon, even as a child. Her legs kicking the low wall that she sat on and her head tilted up to the purple sky that flashed with forks of electricity that rocked the hills. She was born when the cherry blossoms were at their most violent in colour. Her mother died that day and a pall fell over the small room. 

She tended a small miniature tree in a pot. The other kids didn't go to her, she always refused so they left her to stare at the banking mist and the sense of chilly suffocation that were a feature of mountains. One day, her father found her at the edge of a precipice standing in her muted awe at her world. The wall was at the edge and when she looked down, her heart lifted from fear. It was a pitiless fall below to rocks shrouded in Death. She stood barefoot and stayed like a phantom. 

Sara, her only friend, stood behind her. "Kala come down, you'll fall," she said with her hands on her hips. Accidents at that height were not small. Accidents meant certain Death. Kala was not fearful though. She was immune in her mind. 

In the night, she played her violin. The sound was sucked into the air and tilted down the mountain like water percolating into a drain. 

**

The Queen's sweet face turned into a mask of ugly hate. Her mirror was broken. She tried once more. 

"Mirror mirror on the wall, tell me who is the fairest of them all?" she asked in a controlled, calm nervousness. The mirror grinned discreetly and seemed to shiver as if trying to give her bad news with a touch of sweetness on top. It coughed once. 

"My lady, though you are as beautiful as the landscapes that stretch the breadth of your vast kingdom, there is still one. She dwells in the mountain. She is as wonderful as dew on a blade of grass and as special as---"the mirror was cut short. It stopped and widened its eyes in offence. 

"Enough!" The Queen's eyes leaked fiery tears. "I will kill her."

The mirror cut in slowly. "My Lady, I'm afraid that cannot---" it was cut off once more as the Queen whirled around. 

"You'll help me....yes," she said with finality. The mirror sighed. 

"I am not a Death instrument....My Lady," it said stiffly. The Queen glared. 

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