Monday, October 18, 2010


The second story in Snow's Dark Music is not quite a horror story.

Very much, a Queen is getting ready to celebrate her diamond jubilee, but through the pomp and everything, a strange little girl catches her eye. Oddly enough, the girl follows her around. The Queen is perplexed as to why the child is unattended, but makes up her mind that she will be friendly to the girl, should she ever come in direct contact with her.

As the Queen goes to her bedroom to rest for the evening ceremonies, she sees the girl run into the bedroom. Intending to let the girl have a pleasant time before sending her home, she says not a word. As the doors close, one of the maids in waiting hears pleasant, rippling laughter.

As the evening festivities begin, the queen does not emerge from her room.
... the Queen's ladies in waiting opened the door of the chamber, and entered. They walked a few steps into the room, and then stood frozen. The Queen sat in a great chair by a window. She was very quiet. A smile lay on her lips. She was not sleeping. She was dead. The afternoon sunlight fell in a slanting ray across the room to a wall opposite where it bathed with a golden flood of luminance the portrait of a little girl with a halo of aureate hair—a tiny little sprite of a girl, whose youth and vivacity the artist had caught so successfully that the little figure seemed about to go dancing and skipping out of the frame. It was a picture of the Queen painted a few weeks after her coronation when she was a child 5 years old.

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