“Just what do you think you’re doing, young lady?” the rabbit-haired man says over her head.
Damn. He’s caught her. Well let him watch as she squeezes the life out of…
Flamina sticks her hands in the goo in front of her, feeling the beating of wings in every bump of flesh as the lumpy mass squirms beneath her hands. Dark red oozes out between her fingers, crawling in waves of soft, thick petals over her skin. Reveling, she draws in closer and closer, until the bloody mess writhes and shakes, a dead rabbit prostrate and dripping, pooling wet sounds onto the packed floor tiles from her fingertips.
“If you want to kill me, shouldn’t you start with that one first?” he quips, reaching around her to grab the beating heart from her grasp. He points with it across the white of the hallway, toward another cloched object, a folded card, sitting quietly beneath the glass on the cool white chalk pedestal.
Her white hair tilts across her forehead, spreading out and around her vaguely heart-shaped face like a pure Arabian’s wild, creamy forelock. Her fingers scrape against the smoothed squares of his features, the bridge of his thick nose, the petulant quirking lips curved as the ribbons on presents. She wants to run away from him. Flaring her nostrils just as she has read in his great library a real horse would do, she pushes off his thin chest and, holding fast to his tweed lapels, she shoves at him, scratching and biting and fighting in a cloud of long nails and bearded skin and failed attempts at escaping.
“What’s the matter, little Flamme? Can’t keep hold of yourself?” he says suddenly when she opens her eyes again. Though still bearded, he is no longer standing beside her, instead, he is across the room slightly, his abrupt body quiet in white linen and sandals. In a softer voice, older and wiser and full of what he must consider an old man’s mischief, he says, “Have you found the black door yet, the one with the crack on it?”
His big hands open, like water pouring into a desert, and instead of his dead heart, there is a very live rabbit there, white furred and huddling, its dark, guileless eyes open and restless. Her lavender gaze lies flayed and ravished by this, for some reason, trembling before the coney’s scruffy scrunched up question of a countenance.
“Maybe I have! It matters not. I shall steal it, whatever you keep there!”
She imagines she looks quite fierce, determined. She is proud of herself. It is in the way she stands up to him.
Why then has she not moved to be closer to him, to show him her pride?
“Hahahaah! Hahahahahahahahah! Well, when you find it, come and get me. It’s not a door to be painted lightly. Although I imagine –she- would think otherwise. You two ought to get along, given time! Hahahaha!”
He walks away, but not before waving his arm at a space down the hall, just out of view.
And why does he laugh so? As though something of minor importance has suddenly become the grandest jest imaginable?