disclaimer: This whole thing is based off Ovid's telling of Daphne and Apollo. The nymph girl is mine. You won't learn her name until chapter 3. Warning; I have an incompetent amount of knowledge of mythology (I mean, I read the Oddysey, I'm reading Ovid, but that's about it), so if I don't know something, I'm learning it as I go. If I mess something up, don't hesitate to tell me so I can fix it.

Chapter 1- Laure

The wood nymph walked wearily in her mystical domain, the forest. She sighed as her soft eyes looked up at the glittering leaves above her.

It was this laurel tree that always made her sigh. This particular tree once was a free nymph as she, but the so-called "gods" above had interfered with that fate. It was a symbol for her, a symbol that screamed that none of the gods were worthy of praise. Her heart was bitter and torn and saddened by the sight of this one tree.

The nymph rested her hand upon the bark of the tree. She could still sense the strong spirit that inhabited its wood.

"Oh, Daphne," the nymph sighed.

The tree seemed to be reaching down to her with its leaves, but only succeeded in providing more shade. A few leaves fell lightly down.

"My friend," she began, and picked up a leaf on the ground that shone with unnatural beauty. She remembered how pretty her friend had been, how she had been the envy of the other forest nymphs before her unlucky transformation. "I know how the gods have wronged you. I also know that Apollo will be here soon, so I shall not stay."

At the sound of Apollo's name, the tree shook violently, and several perfect leaves fell down to the ground. She was sure it was Daphne shuddering, but then again, she was a tree. It could have been an animal in her branches, or the wind.

"I had to tell you of my final decision. I will not serve them. Those so-called omnipotent gods are not gods at all. They've wronged you. Who are they, to interfere with our otherwise blissful lives? Who are they, that they can waltz right in and try to steal our love, or manipulate our minds? And who are the Fates, the indifferent, cold Fates, that they may choose our path of life? No. I will serve no god, so long as they are these. If I could, I would disown my divinity, just so I would not have to be one of these that I hate."

The laurel tree was uncomfortably still, but of course, the tree was a tree, and no longer her nymph friend. The young nymph sighed, looking up at the tree, knowing what Daphne would say to what she just stated.

"Don't fret for me, my friend; I know what I'm getting myself into. I know my path, and it is not with the other gods. It can't be. I know our friends all desire to be virgins as you did, yet I can find no joy in that. I can also find no joy in men or love. I'm somewhere in between, Daphne, and it's a very lonely, confusing place."

A few leaves fell from the tree, and floated to the ground as though angels carried them all the way to the forest floor.

"Sometimes I can't tell if you're still human inside or not," the nymph said, sighing. A small strand of dark brown hair fell before her eyes, which she pushed back quickly. She had lost her headband yesterday, and ever since wondered how she would get along without it.

She suddenly heard the sound of creaking and horses, and saw that the forest was getting brighter.

"Prepare yourself; Apollo approaches."

The tree shuddered again, and the nymph fled the tree to the river, not wishing to have the same fate as Daphne. Yet, once she was far in the distance, she could not help but look back at the laurel tree with saddened eyes. She held the lone laurel leaf she had picked up in her white, but well-used hand.

"I won't forget you, my friend."


laure: laurel tree.