I decided for this last pre-NaNoWriMo #WIPiTuP that I wanted to share a snippet from the "birthday scene" that kicked off the whole week long rewrite of "Skipping Down the Primrose Path: Book Three"- whole scenes removed or moved within the manuscript, others seriously rewritten, a net gain of 10662 words. During NaNoWriMo, I may be sharing from my Nano-novel- working title "Tabitha and Bina in Love." "Two erotic romance authors meet online, fall in love, and engage in a long distance relationship."
I plan on doing a special bit of fiction- related to Vala- on Halloween itself, or Winternights or Samhaine as it's thought of by the pagans in her family.
The heavy purple curtains pulled back to show a gaunt man dressed all in the black standing alone caught in a glaringly white spotlight.
"Welcome all to this rendition of Greek myths shown in their frightening splendor as retold by Michaela from Crete. Things will be a bit different tonight. You can no doubt hear the musical orchestra tuning their instruments, but we will also have a Greek chorus, a group of men standing of the side of the main action. Well we think they are all men." The man bowed low and then the curtains closed again.
"Oh!" Vala gasped. Wow! Maybe I can beg to go down on Greta at bedtime?
After a few more moments of musical swirls, there was an almost complete silence from the orchestra pit forward.
Then a lone high pitched note- maybe a flute?- broke the silence as the curtains opened on two scenes. A group of people in black robes holding ceramic faces, smiling faces, in front of their own to one side of the stage. On the other, two young girls danced among a bunch of paper flowers.
More instruments joined the flute as the chorus chanted. "The only daughter of a goddess alone with her handmaiden. Shouldn't she be better protected?"
A crash of cymbals rang out. The light on the girls went grey. A stunningly tall man draped in cobwebs of fabric appeared seemingly out of nowhere beside the girls.
"You will come with me, Persephone, and be a light in my darkened sphere of control!" the man ordered, almost sang.
The girl with the vibrant deep blonde hair cowered against the other girl. "Please, my mother expects me soon."
The man rose up in front of the black haired girl. "Tell fair Demeter that Persephone fell through a crack in the earth."
A sound like a gun shot rang out before smoke filled the stage. One half of the curtain fell leaving only the chorus on stage when the smoke cleared.
"Whatever will Demeter do when her sweet Persephone does not appear home." The chorus had changed back to the smiling masks. Then the curtain fell in front of them.
Vala relaxed against Iona.
Iona and Greta exchanged a smile.
A somber song started among a few parts of the orchestra just before the curtains pulled up to reveal a new scene.
The chorus chanted, "Persephone finds herself in the dank palace of Hades, the Lord of the Dead. No sustenance may pass her lips or the consequences will be grave."
"No! I will not eat your food!" The blonde turned away from a plate of delicacies held in front of her by a stooped, wretched man.
Another approached her from the opposite direction, a different assortment of foods on his plate.
"No! No!" She dragged the knuckles of her fists down her cheeks as if she cried.
"I have something you might like. The man who had demanded Persephone come with him came from behind her chair with one bright white seed on his palm. "Enjoy just this one pomegranate seed. It shall sustain you."
Persephone glanced up and tilted her head to look at the man. "I know I mustn't eat anything while I'm in this world of shades. Please don't make me."
"But you're so hungry," he taunted. "Just one seed can't hurt. Can it?"
Persephone's blood red lips parted. "But I shouldn't."
"For me?" He brought his hand close to her chin. "Let me hear you say please again."
"Please... I need to go back to the gods above."
The man tipped the seed into Persephone's open mouth. He pushed on her chin, forcing her mouth to close as the string instruments rose by themselves.
The chorus chanted, "Now Persephone has accepted food from Hades' own palm. She can never go home again."
Vala pressed her legs together, grateful for her long, covering dress. Greek myths shouldn't turn me on.
"I can see we'll have fun in the limo on the way home," Iona murmured.