She was beautiful. She was exotic. And she was absolutely evil.
Frollo had always prided himself on being an exemplary priest. His favourite moments were when he walked amongst the pews and saw the sinners draw back in fear and shame. He would look them in the face while they received communion and see the terror in their eyes.
Yet Esmeralda, with one wave of her silk scarf, had made him lose all composure. In her presence, he was once again a boy, tormented by desires of the flesh. She made him feel things he didn't remember he could feel. He wanted to touch the satin of her skin, smell the jasmine in her hair, be utterly lost in her deep ebony eyes.
He first saw her in the square from high in his tower. She was the most beautiful creature he had ever seen. Her dress swayed around her like a tulip in the breeze. She danced, and her delicate lips parted as she laughed. There were children dancing, and she joined in as if she was one of them. Her long black hair framed her face and her shoulders, and fell down to her hips. It blew in the summer wind. She was so carefree, so childlike. He fell in love with her that day.
She was in his dreams, sprawled across his meagre bed in his dark chamber, arms outstretched wide, trembling for his touch. His chin fell back and he laughed quietly. He had never thought that after so many years of faith, he would break now.
He kneeled before Mary and cried aloud. He pleaded for her forgiveness, because he was going to do the unthinkable. Mary looked back at him in disgust. He looked her square in her marble eyes, and turned away.
It doesn't matter, he thought. I have to do this or else I'll never think clearly again.
She was in the dungeons, waiting to be hanged. He smiled once more. She was helpless. She would do anything to find her freedom. Peasants like her don`t like to be caged.
He found her sitting in a corner of the cold cell. Her chocolate skin was revealed from under her rags. She looked up at Frollo with fear and contempt. Her eyes were like those of a tigress who had been cornered.
He made his offer. She spat at his feet.
He became angrier than he had ever been. Who did she think she was? He offered her life, and she threw it back in it face. He lifted her by her gray rags and held her neck with one hand. He could feel her breath growing rapid under his touch. Her endless eyes rolled back in her head as she gasped for breath. He dropped her suddenly and she collapsed onto the floor, her mouth wide open trying to breathe again. She didn't look up when he stepped out and locked her in once more.
He touched his rosary in silent prayer. She would die. The witch would die.