The Bubbling Pen


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Message to Readers

Inspired by Beauty and the Beast <3

Tale As Old As Time

January 3, 2019


The painting hung dangling, as if cast upon the edge of a precipice, from a solitary hook.

Adorning three jagged slashes, it seemed to call for attention, almost begging for an audience. Framed by a voluptuously regal frame, its figure asked nothing more of the wallpaper behind it, seeming to bask in the glow of its position centre-stage. But the room itself seemed unimpressed, like a contingent of old ladies wanting to return to their knitting needles. The chaise longue in particular lay heaving in boredom: some scraps of its fabric flapping lazily with the breeze, wafting in through the open window; its four intricately carved feet curling like lions' paws after a bloody meal; each neck roll cushion swimming in its own pointlessly white stuffing... There was nothing more to be confirmed than that the room itself was a mess.

An indifferent, forgotten mess.

Not a soul moved as a rat made its way out from under the mantlepiece, unperturbed by the obnoxiously staring furniture. In a peculiar way, they were like family; the rodent and the resplendent chattel. Every night, they awaited the Hour of the Wind, much like a flock of school children waiting idly for a magic show. They would snuggle tight (as tight as inanimate objects possibly could) and listened to the tales carried by their beastly friend outside, as it whistled and whipped through the sunless eventide. Each nook and cranny of the room would edge closer to the portrait, waiting for the grande finale, as the wind dragged a breathful of unfortunate moonbeams into the room, throwing eerie images upon the painting itself. Perhaps it was due their lethargically monotonous lives in the distanced castle and their disinterested company (or their lack thereof), that made this nightly show so greatly anticipated. And treasured. But all of the room’s occupants would spew a simultaneous breath of relief and distaste as the sun clambered to its throne again every morning. It was customary for each life-embedded being to then turn their heads towards the rose that perched upon the mantel, as soon as the first sickly rays filtered in through the windows that would forever lie agape. And, reversing their clockwork movements once more - as quickly as they could to avoid watching a petal fall - they would once again resume their stationary positions, facing the dejected painting on the wall.

But everyday, the tenants of the castle found it more and more difficult to turn with haste and they knew that inevitably, the day would come when they would no longer have the spirit to turn back to the portrait of their humbled master.

And perhaps it was a good thing, then, that the curse would leave them staring forever at the stalk of a rose: floating tauntingly above a ring of cadaverous petals, singing the eternal song of death itself.


Inspired by Beauty and the Beast, particularly the scene where Belle enters the West Wing, passing the Beast's torn painting and the living but frozen furniture.


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  • The Bubbling Pen

    Aww thanks! :)

    over 1 year ago
  • majestically awkward manatee

    Wow!! This is beautifully written! I love it! Great work! I’m glad you mentioned this to me in the comments of my six word story :D

    over 1 year ago