"That was not just right." Blondie Lockes said as she boarded her carriage home. "In fact, it was the furthest thing from it." It was the day after Legacy Day. The time of reflection and planning. Normally Blondie would pack her Mirror Pad to see if she could get any juicy gossip for her show. Perhaps a new romance had sprung, or maybe a new development was on its way…but this year, the name on everyone's tongue was Raven Queen.
Blondie had never thought of Raven that throughout the school year. Everyone knew her story, destinies to poison Apple White, and then defeated back into the darkness by true love. The perfect ending. Just right.
But now, that ending was not certain. The story had become distorted, the clear vision marred by choice.
"It's not right."
Blondie felt her chest tighten as she scrolled through her friends MyChapter pages. There were statuses of anger, pride, confusion and any other emotion you could type down onto a blog page.
Raven Queen and the Rebels.
Blondie knew her story, she knew her role, she knew the consequences for deviation. Balance was everything. Familiarity the only source of stability.
"Was Raven Queen really that evil? To wreck everything everyone had worked for?"
Blondie looked outside to the changing scenery. Everything was so…contorted. The green trees which needed a touch more red to signify fall. The brisk wind that needed more chill to suit the season. The tart smell of pies that almost seemed burnt.
Nothing was right anymore, it was as if the whole world had abdicated its own place, searching for something else. Why was the world trying to spite her? Why was everything trying to rebel? Why was everything…trying to leave her?
"This isn't right."
The carriage stopped at her cottage, a small place at the end of the road. The ride was too short, nearly two minutes too short. She shook her head.
"This is getting to be too much."
She hopped off and slowly made her way back home. At least now she could be home. At least now she could be protected. In her own home she was safe from the rebel world. The trees who refused to brown, the wind that refused autumn's influence, and the pies that smelled of burnt crust. She was in her own home…where everything was just right.
Except, her home was the one place where everything was always wrong.
"Daddy," she called out as she walked through her door. She looked around her home. The couch was lined up against the coffee table, placing the legs at equal distance from the front door. Just right.
The book shelves were place just near the window so it would glow in the natural light. Just right.
The rugs were aligned perfectly with the halls, so as to line up in the center and lead the eye to the last door of the hallway. Just right.
And yet, Blondie knew everything was wrong. She walked into the kitchen to see her father over the stove.
"Blondie," he said. "Welcome home my darling."
She could almost hear him smiling as he stirred the pot. She looked over to the table. With plates and glasses set all over its top. On for him, one for her, and one for…
Blondie's heart stopped for a moment. They always kept forgetting.
"Hello Daddy." Blondie sat down in her own chair, the one that was just her size and not a foot too tall or too wide. Just right.
She looked over to the empty chair, the extra place her father always made, but no one ever sat in.
Blondie had never known her mother. Her father always told her that a year after she was born, her mother left them both, stealing into the night, and never to be seen again. As she grew older, Blondie's father told her stories of her mother. A woman with gold hair, fickle taste, and a warm laugh.
Stories, the only relics Blondie had of a woman she never knew. When she got older, the story of her mother changed. The questions asked morphed from one form to another. Who was she? Where did she go? When will she be back? Why did she leave?
"Why did she leave?"
But stories were the only thing Blondie had. Every night she had her father read her the story of her mother and the three bears, and every night she went to bed with the same thoughts in her mind.
Just right. It had to be just right.
Was that why she left?
Did she leave because the porridge was too hot?
When Blondie turned two she learned to blow on her porridge until the steam grew tame. Just right.
Did she leave because the curtains weren't straight?
When Blondie turned five, she arranged the curtains until the sun peeked through them. Just right.
Did she leave because the floors weren't clean?
When Blondie turned ten she mopped and scrubbed the floors until they shined like a tiara.
If everything was just right…then she'd come back. That's how the story worked…wasn't it?
"Blondie, it is so wonderful to have you home." Her father's smile was so warm, like a sunrise in the spring. Just right.
But now, nothing was just right. Everything was…wrong. Raven ripped her own page out of the book. There would be no happily ever after anymore.
Everything was just…wrong.
"Now she'll never come back…"
"What was that dear?" Mr. Lockes asked his daughter.
Blondie looked up from her stew. "N-nothing Daddy."
Thanks to Raven, the entire world had become wrong, and no matter how many bookshelves she realigned, or how many carpets she straightened, nothing would be right again…
She looked over to the empty chair, and the empty plate that sat in front of it. She felt her mouth scowl, and her teeth clench.
No… she shook her head. Blondie could not allow that. How long had she gazed at that empty seat? How long had she sifted through her mother's story, hoping to gain a small glimpse of her? She would not allow Raven to take away her one chance…
"It will be right again."
She would make sure of it.