Rapunzel the Vain

I strained my eyes in order to see the microscopic split ends on my golden hair, horrified, I immediately grabbed a pair of scissors, cutting it off with great caution, so as not to be noticeable among the other perfect locks of my hair. It had now grown down to my waist and I treated it with great care, brushing it one hundred time twice a day and washing it with only the purest waters. I also made sure my two daughters, Elizabeth and Sophia had beautifully fine hair, yet neither were as wonderful as mine.

“Mommy, can I brush your hair?” Elizabeth, or Ellie as my husband and I called her, pleaded to me. She looked so much like me it was uncanny, the same rosy cheeks and light skin, with of course the beautiful gold locks. I smiled but slowly shook my head, secretly I couldn’t stand my children…they always wanted to touch my hair with their sticky little fingers and when I wouldn’t let them they would throw fits until my husband would come to calm them down. If I had to choose however, Ellie would be my favorite, for she had been the one to inherit my hair while her sister Sophia, got my husband’s ugly brown hair that would never stay put in any style. “You never let me!” Ellie opened her mouth to begin a tantrum, I thought nothing of it at first but then she grabbed a lock of my hair and yanked, that’s when I snapped, I reached out my arm and in one fluid movement I slapped my daughter hard across the face. Taken back by what I had just done, she sat there in silence holding her red cheek, I felt rage course through my veins as I leaned closer to my daughter and spoke in just a whisper,

“Ellie, you are ten years old, you should know better than to be doing this kind of stuff, and I swear, if you touch my hair one more time or tell anyone of this incident, I will do worse to you than just a slap! Now go to your room!” Ellie’s eyes were wide with fear as she got up and scampered out of the room.  I rubbed my scalp delicately soothing the pain the wretched girl had caused.

Three years had passed since that day, Ellie never went near me, yet I noticed she would watch me when I neglected to pay attention to anything but my lovely hair. Her sister, Sophia, I never worried about, for her father always took her out practicing archery and a few other things that if I really cared, I would say were not a maidens job.

The smell of rain was strong in the thick air, I parted my attention away from my hair for a few seconds to face my husband as he walked into the room, his expression harsh,

“Rapunzel, an army from our enemy kingdom has declared war, I must fight in battle.”  His voice was rough and for the first time I realized his eyes were red…from crying I guessed. I shrugged,

“Okay.” I simply said. He seemed to be frustrated with me,

“Yet we need another soldier, and only one in the kingdom volunteered, but has a price. Our Kingdom is not rich, would you be willing to give some jewelry or some of your gold? Rapunzel, I want you to have everything you desire, but we will lose our kingdom if we do not have the same amount of soldiers.” He was staring at my golden hair brush on the table, I felt anger bubble inside me, the one thing I loved…I had no jewelry, he knew that, I grinded my teeth about ready to go off when a though came to me,

“Take Sophia.” His eyes widened at these words and his jaw opened but no words came out, he was speechless, “Think about it honey, you’ve been training her…she’s perfect.” His shock turned to rage,

“You are so selfish! You would send our own daughter out to war all because you don’t want to give up a hairbrush? I cannot believe you! She’s only sixteen!” He came towards me, I backed up a little in fright,

“I’ll do it.” Both of our heads snapped over to the doorway where she stood, Sophia. She had heard the whole conversation and had a determined look on her face. “Mother’s right, you have been training me father, I’m good, if me fighting means to save the kingdom…I will do it, even if I die in battle.”

“NO! YOU WILL NOT! You are only a girl and I will not lose my daughter! Your mother will give up her golden brush, if we win the war, you can get another Rapunzel!” My husband’s voice boomed and his eyes seemed to pierce my heart, yet I kept a solid face, only thinking about my own needs, my brush. Besides, I had two daughters…what was the difference of just having one? I never REALLY liked Sophia or Ellie actually, but at least Ellie had my beauty.

After a few hours of this, it became clear that Sophia was going no matter what my husband said, even Ellie wept at her sister’s feet, pleading she not go, but Sophia was determined. Once the hour came that they left, my husband leaned close into my ear before mounting his horse,

“If anything happens to Sophia in this war, I will take it out on you! And once I return, I will have you exiled from the castle, you are a wretched woman with a cold heart who loves nothing but her hair.” With that he rode off side by side with Sophia. The words my husband spoke to me should have gave me some regret, yet they did not, in fact the very next morning I arose early and had a palace carriage bring me to a sorceress that I had known from when I had sought out help killing the king who ordered an attack on our kingdom from another land, yet this time I wasn’t here to help my husband, I was here to kill him.

As I stepped into the familiar wooden house, a sweet smell overcame me as the sorceress stepped out from behind a door. She gave me an evil smile with her dazzling white teeth, she was dressed in a long flowing, royal purple dress that hugged her body perfectly. Her raven black, frizzy hair was loose and flowing in a breeze that did not exist.

“Ah Rapunzel, I knew I would be getting a visit from you. So what are you here for this time?” She walked over to a couch and patted the spot next to her. I sat down, feeling her gaze on me I looked to the ground,

“My husband, he has threatened to exile me from the land when he gets back from war…I cannot let that happen.” She reached out and grabbed my hands, then she stroked my hair with her long fingernails scraping my scalp, I shivered, it irritated me yet I dared not flinch.

“I see, and I have had a look into fait to see if he will die on his own accord, yet alas he will not, but it seems as if the one he rides with shall.”

“What is your price?” I asked, hoping it would be something I could afford. The sorceress snickered,

“Don’t worry, it will be paid soon.” These words made me edgy, yet she had said not to worry about it…so I would not.

Not long after I had returned to the castle, news came that the king had died in battle and Princess Sophia had lived and was to return by morning. Once Ellie had heard about her father’s death she wept all evening, I had to shut myself in my own room to drown out her cries. Picking up the gold brush that meant more to me than my own kingdom, I ran it through the golden locks I loved even more.

Over the weeks I would spare a few seconds of my time to notice my daughters seemed to be gone most of the time, and even when they were in the castle they seemed to keep to each other’s company, never coming to evening meals. I shrugged it aside and just focused on me. Deep inside I began to feel lonely, my husband was dead and my daughters had nothing to do with my life, yet I held my head up high and never gave in. Today had been particularly tiring and I was quite exhausted by the time night came, feeling the soft mattress underneath my sore body felt wonderful and before I knew it, I had drifted off into a deep sleep.

Soft snipping sounds haunted my dreams…snip…snip it was the dreaded sound of hair being cut, I knew it because of that terrible day when the old enchantress had chopped off my beautiful long hair…it still gave me shivers. Snip. The enchantress’ face morphed into the young sorceress,

“Don’t worry, it will be paid soon.” Continuous laughter as the words replayed, echoing through a dimly lit room. Then her face illuminated from the darkness…her expression solid, yet she said nothing, her mouth turned up into a smirk as she refrained from telling me something. Snip. Something important, what she didn’t tell me that day…what the price was? Snip. The words echoed again. SNIP. I jumped up my eyes widening at the realization that the sound was real, turning my head in the darkness I could just make out the outline of Sophia’s soft white nightgown, a single flame suddenly appeared, the first thing I saw was Ellie standing next to Sophia, scissors in one sisters hand, the lit candle in the other’s. That’s when the horror of what was happening hit me. I instinctively reached for my golden locks feeling only the jagged edges of hair that remained. Standing abruptly I pushed my daughters out-of-the-way running towards a mirror not pausing to see the expressions on their faces, I peered at my reflection in shock, they had cut my hair. It wasn’t even past my ears, it was choppy and horrid. Pieces of my once beautiful hair still stuck to my nightgown and when I turned to look at the bed the rest lay around the floor. My eyes locked on my daughters, pure hatred bubbled inside me and my face became hot,

“We know about that sorceress and what you asked her to do to father. You have never cared about anything but your stupid hair, so now we take away what you love most since you took away what we loved.” Sophia’s glare held mine as she spoke, I followed her hand as she laid down the scissors on a little table.

“You never did love us did you? I remember that day when I was only a child…you hit me.”  Ellie’s expression matched Sophia’s, yet I wasn’t thinking about their words, my only focus was those scissors, all I could feel was complete hatred towards them. I moved in closer, softening my expression I came up to Sophia, extending my arms out as if to embrace her she looked at me questioningly, and with my patients being little with these ungrateful little brats, I quickly swept up the scissors aiming for Sophia’s chest I pushed the scissors forwards in a blinding anger, my hair…my beautiful hair! More anger coursed through my veins as Sophia jumped out-of-the-way and I stabbed the wall, quickly pulling them out I closed in on Ellie unaware of Sophia until she hit my hand causing the scissors to go skittering across the floor. I should have known better…Sophia had been trained in war, I wouldn’t be able to take her. A wave of hatred came back to me as I remembered what they had done to me, NO! THEY WOULD NOT GET AWAY WITH THIS! I ran towards Ellie in pursuit, luring Sophia towards me, then, in one single blow, I grabbed a vase, smashing it into her head, she dropped to the floor unconscious, retrieving the scissors I attempted to finish her off when Ellie tackled me. I rolled over, I was on top and had the scissors directly over her heart, a blunt pain went into my stomach as she kneed me, and grabbing the scissors she threw them across the floor. Ellie threw a punch at my face that hit me square in the jaw yet I would not let that slow me down, I clasped my hands around her neck, choking her. Her face grew purple and she kept trying to get up, though I had her hands and feet pinned with my body, just as her eyes began to shut and triumph overwhelmed me, a terrible sharp pain began between my shoulder blades. The burning was beyond any pain I had ever felt, a terrible cracking sound came from my ribs as Sophia kicked me off her sister, kneeling down beside me I could make out the objects in her hands, in one she sprinkled my cut hair all over my body and with the other she held the bloody scissors with which she again, to ensure my death, inserted into my heart, and with one last thought I realized what the price had been the sorceress had been speaking of. My life.

“Rapunzel’s attempted murder on her daughters after they cut off her popular blonde hair was tragic. Her eldest daughter, Ellie, one year older than Sophia, was in severe care after her mother tried to strangle her to death, from which Sophia, who had been bashed over the head by Rapunzel with a vase, finished off their mother with the very same scissors they sheared off her locks. Both sister’s live and now rule the kingdom, but will be scarred forever with their past”

-Grimm’s News

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