Changing Faces - Part Eight


She was pawing through some of her mothers old forgotten things, just playing around and treasure hunting. Mere had stored most of her old childhood things in boxes and placed them in the attic for storage. These same boxes were vertible treasure troves of fun things to play with; best of all, Mere would never miss them.

Raven cautiously thrust her hand down into the large box; she didn't know what was in there, but she didn't want to get bitten or stung.

Her fingers grasped something lacey and delicate; too thick to be a tablecloth, and too thin to be a curtuin.

She lifted it out, sneezing at the upkick of dust. Pulling backwards, she managed to get most of the item from the box. It was a dress; it had once been white, but years and neglect had turned it a hazy yellow-gray color. Pearls adorned the chest area, and the section she had ahold of was train.

Raven recalled seeing a dress like this in some old paintings; not the same dress, of course, but dresses that it resembled. Eloise called them wedding dresses, and said they were only worn once.

Raven drug her fingers along the lace, grimacing as her rough palms caught in the fabric. It was once very beautiful, she could see that; Raven wondered why anyone would leave such a dress to languish in an attic. Oh well.

Raven picked up the dress to stuff it back in the box when she saw something. A glint, and mere catching of light, but it was enough to tell her that there was a mirror in that box.

Reaching past the thick folds of the dress, Raven picked up the mirror. It was surprisingly heavy, and its frame was ornate; more so then the other mirrors in the household.

(Whoever owned this must have been very vain) Raven mused, tracing her fingertips along its carved rim (to need such a fancy knick-knack.)

Raven turned the mirror over and looked into her own reflection : oval yellow eyes which seemed to burn with their own light, deep blue skin which had gotten darker as she aged. Her face had the delicate, refined structure of the fine ladies she was descended from, but its own unique touch. Her brillant red hair now hung past her waist.

All in all she thought she looked rather nice; certainly she was *unique*. She was by no means normal, but she allowed herself a moment of vainity in thinking that she was beautiful in her own right.

(Now look at me) she chastized herself (you'd think *I* was the vain one....)

Dismissing the thoughts from her head, she gave one last glance into the mirror.

Odd. Well, not really odd, but a bit different. Unlike other girls, bruises didn't show up on her skin. Raven tenderly touched a sore spot on her cheek where her mother had slapped her over something trivial.

She winced more from the memory than the pain, and placed the mirror in its box, on top of the wedding dress.

Her mother had never beaten her as hard as that day when she was four, but it did not take much to anger her. Mere often stayed in bed more now, and her eyes looked sunken in. Often, she would slap Raven if she was angry, or upset, or just in a foul mood.

Raven shook her head, banishing those thoughts as well from her mind, and placed the lid over the box. Standing up, she stretched, allowing the warm sunlight pouring in from the window to heat her belly. She inhled deeply, only to breathe in a little too much dust, and had to sneeze rather violently.

Raven was older now; her eighth birthday was not far away. She wondered if Eloise would bake her a cake this year-

Out of the corner of her eye, Raven saw movement in the bushes. She turned sharply on one heel, surprised. Walking over to the window, she crouched by the frame, careful to shield herself from view.

Yes, there were definetly people in the bushes below her window. If she craned her head far enough, she could see the head of a tow-haired boy, and part of the face of another.

Oh, dear....

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