The Beast That Yielded
Once upon a time, there was a man. He was a wonderful man. Full of kindness and love and everything that made the skies open up and let the sun shine on life even on the coldest and darkest of days. People who had The Eyes that allowed them to see people for who they really were could easily see he was a beautiful and magnificent man. The Man had these eyes as well. Unfortunately, he could not see his own self with them. He thought he was less than he actually was. He thought he was a monster. Little did he realize that the real monster there was the Beast.
While the Man lived in a nice little village surrounded by family and friends that loved him, far away there was a castle. A very dark palace, where the sun refused to shine and all surrounding wildlife was dead. The Beast would wake up every morning, cold and alone. She had no family nor friends. She hadn't had any in a very long time. Unlike in other stories, the furniture and silverware in her palace weren't alive. There was no mirror to let her see the world. She was utterly alone. Yes, there was a rose and a curse involved, but we'll get to that later. After all, you already know the basic story behind that. The Beast would rarely venture outside the castle walls. The outside world refused to accept her, so she never again tried to be accepted.
The only way the Beast connected herself with the outside world without danger was through her poems. After hours of practice and thousands of destroyed pencils, the Beast finally learned how to write on paper with her massive claws. She would create poems depicting her sadness and loneliness, stories as well; sometimes she would even draw art. She began doing this from a young age. But after years of seeing the piles of her creations grow and grow and collect dust, up to the point of growing mold, the Beast became sad again. Out of frustration, she threw the piles out the window from the highest tower. As she watched them fall, she looked up and saw the village. Many people would describe the village as the farthest thing from the Beast and her palace, but to her, it seemed so much closer. It seemed like a place where her dreams could come true. As she calmed herself, the Beast got a new piece of paper and created yet another poem. But this time, in a desperate attempt to connect with others, she folded it up into a paper plane and threw it out the window. She didn't watch it as it flew out the window. She was sure it crashed to the ground. She would do this almost every day. Create something new and let it sail out, never staying long enough to watch where it landed.
A year passed like this. Then two. Three. So long had passed that the Beast had lost count. It wasn't until one day, that she received something in return. As the Beast made her way up the tower, she heard a flutter of wings and the scrape of stone. When the Beast got to the room and looked out the window, she saw a pigeon flying away towards a tree not too far away. Looking down, she saw it left a letter on the window sill. As the Beast broke the wax seal, which simply had the letters BXD, and read its contexts, she almost wept. It was a letter from a villager. A poem had actually found its way there and the villager had read it. Wanting to read more, he followed the scattered trail until he found the palace. He looked up just in time to see another plane fly through the window. According to the letter, he spend days collecting all the planes and headed home, where he laid for hours reading them. He had heard the legends that claimed a ferocious beast roamed the castle halls, but wanted to know more. He could not travel the distance again, however, so he got his pigeon Kevin to send a letter. The Beast could not believe her eyes. To have someone want to know more about her and her creations. Excitingly, she grabbed a pencil and paper and began to write a letter in response, adding a small poem on the back, making sure she used the neatest handwriting she could. The pigeon was too scared to come closer to her, so she left the letter on the window sill and backed off. This time she did cry when she saw the pigeon fly off with it.
The next morning, the Beast burst with joy at seeing another letter on her window. The Man complimented her poem and thanked her for writing back. He had written his own and the Beast swore it was the best one in the world. He talked about himself and life in the village. Although the Beast never admitted it out loud, she felt envious of him. He had family that loved him so much and friends that cared. The Beast was happy though. She was happy for him. Years went by, and it was the best years of the Beast's life. She could not remember ever being so happy. She had thought she would be alone forever. Once in awhile the Man would not respond. At one point, it lasted almost a year. The Beast had almost given up hope. But when that letter arrived, so did her joy. Eventually, they send small self-portraits of themselves to each other. The Beast was deathly afraid of this. She was terrified he would leave her alone if he saw her. But his response almost stopped her heart because of the overwhelming happiness she felt. The Man complimented her. He told her she looked wonderful and beautiful. The Beast didn't believe him. Not for a long time. But eventually, she believed him. Now, every time she passed a mirror, she didn't flinch at her own reflection. She looked at herself and saw what the Man saw in her. After a long time, she told him about her curse. She had been a terrible, horrible dictator in a past life, and she was to pay for it in this one. But there was a way to save her. If she could find love, love that led to marriage and a happy future, her curse would be broken. But as she wrote this, she looked over her shoulder at the rose. It only had about five petals left. The Beast always believed she would die alone. Alone in this palace of darkness. But maybe, just maybe. she wouldn't. Not anymore. Yes, the Beast had fallen in love with the Man. She had never felt the kind of happiness she felt with him. When she sent the letter off and his response came, the Beast fell to her knees and wept. The letter only contained four words.
I Love You Too.
The Beast never felt so much joy in her entire miserable life. To have been able to find someone like him. He who was so much like her, but different in the best of ways. It was too good to be true.
And it was.
After writing to each other for so long, they had arranged for the Man to come visit her. He would stay at the palace for a week and the Beast knew it would be the absolute best week of her life. They had previously talked about marriage, and what a happy family they would have in the future. The Beast actually had a future to look forward too. Previous to their interaction, the Beast never saw anything when she looked into her future. Only her lonely and empty death. But now, she could clearly see herself and the Man. Together and happy. The Beast smiled at the thought. As she began cleaning the palace so it would be spotless, she heard the sound of dozens of birds taking flight. She went up the tower and looked out. Here and there, something appeared between the trees on the path leading to the village. It was several horses carrying a family. The men were shooting at the birds in order to catch dinner. As they stopped in a clearing for the night, the Beast was able to make out the members. The Beast wouldn't have thought much of it if it weren't for a certain female there. She reckoned the woman was about the Man's age. She was tall and slender, with gorgeous long hair and pale skin. Her eyes were big and dark, and she was beautiful. Something inside the Beast clicked, and she had a terrible feeling in her gut. The next day, the Man didn't send a letter. Nor did he the day after that. Or the day after that. On the fourth day, a letter finally arrived, and it was what the Beast feared the most.
The Man had met the Woman.
A month later, the Beast was lying on the floor, her head on the window sill in the highest tower. The sun was going down, and the last petal of the rose was about ready to fall. In the distance, she heard church bells ringing, and she knew who had gotten married. The Man had send her a letter a week ago. It stated how sorry he was, but that he knew she would find someone closer to her that would make her happy. The Beast had laughed at that. The Beast had considered the very same thing many times in the past. Leaving him so he could be with someone better. So he could be happy. She didn't need to see him to know what a wonderful man he was. She had tried her best to make him see himself the way everyone else did. Hopefully, the Woman would help with that. She had considered fighting. Her whole being had wanted to fight to keep him. She was a selfish beast after all. But, in the end, she cared about him far more than she did for herself. She knew there was no one she could blame but herself for the hurt she felt. As the last rings of the bells rang and the doves took to the sky, the Beast cried. She was not angry. She felt no envy nor hatred. She felt content. She knew the Man would be happy. She knew the Woman would give him the happily ever after he deserved. As the sun set and the bells could no longer be heard, the last petal finally fell.
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