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I have to admit that I went through a love of the Cinderella-folktale in August last year and wrote quite a few stories… So I decided to spruce one up (you can read the original version here) and enter it into the awesome Cinderella-project that Anne J Anguilar-Van der Merwe and Theresa Barker had invited us all to participate in. Remember: the deadline is the end of the month!

If you want to know more about the project, click on either link above. The Twitter hashtag is #CinderellaMythmakers (awesome, right?). And click on the following links if you want to read Anne’s story, City of Magic, and Theresa’s story Little Rich Girl – both are amazing takes on the folktale. And if you’d like to read all of the entries thus far, go here.

black and white film proper

 

Lights

By Ronel Janse van Vuuren

 

Cindy dreamed in black and white; it was the only way to get through a day on the colourful carousel. In her dreams, the world was in perfect contrast. A black-and-white chicken could actually be two if the light fell just right.

She woke up with a start when the black cat that haunted her dreams suddenly got green eyes.

The twilight room was free from felines. She looked up at the wall covered with photos she’d taken: all of them in black and white. There was a time when the photos had been her prison. Now they were her salvation.

Through the lens of her camera, illusions shattered and truth was revealed.

Her cell phone lit up. It was another message from him. Cindy wiped her eyes and sighed. The light from the desk lamp caught the photo she’d taken of her suave husband and the socialite at the ball she was unable to attend the previous evening. Her feet throbbed as anger coursed through her.

Cindy forced her tired arms to push her away from the workstation. She turned off the light switch and the room fell into complete darkness as she manoeuvred her wheelchair down the corridor. The wood floor creaked beneath the wheels, each new scrape causing tears to burn the back of her throat.

One day when I’m fully healed, I’ll refuse to wear high heels ever again, she thought as she passed the closet filled with her clothes from another life. And I’ll stay away from cats, the thought came as she again saw the shadow of one slinking past in the glow of the city’s lights. The combination was what had gotten her into this mess in the first place.

She could see her old haunts lit up from her window so high above the metropolis. Cindy could imagine her friends laughing and talking as they attended a party or fundraiser, dressed to the nines, night after night.

Another message came through in muted light on her cell phone. Another apology from her husband.

She should have chosen candour over charisma.

 

baw shoe

 

I hope you liked what happened after the happily-ever-after – some believe Cinderella drove the Prince mad with her obsessive cleaning of the castle, but perhaps he’s the one who didn’t turn out so great. And what’s it like to really be married to Prince Charming?

So, what do you think? Did you like it? Would you change something about it? Did you like the allusion to her socialite-life before the accident?

I thought this would be a great way to show that a story doesn’t have to be long – like Just Deserts – to be effective. And that it doesn’t always have to have a happy-ever-after… I always appreciate feedback, so leave your thoughts in the comments.

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