Mirror Mirror, Part Three Chapters One and Two

Fiction By Clare // 6/6/2011

Currently the only story I have more to post of is this one. Thoughts? Comments? Opinions?

This is all VERY long and needs to be broken up into smaller chapters, but that's what editing is for. Enjoy!

Part Three
Chapter One
Professor Anders Laurence Bartholomew Mason sat down in a mine, studying a miniscule diamond through a highly powerful lens, which, according to a rather reputable Spoonian ‘Catalogue of Ye Inventions’, could magnify an object up to five times, which is rather impressive.
“A dud,” he murmured in disappointment. “Clearly just some quartz. Shiny quartz, but quartz nonetheless.”
An enraged bellow broke him from his concentration.
“Whoever dropped a hammer on their foot, pipe down! You’ll live, I assure you!”
“Your idiot brother just clouted me with his boot!” the roaring reply came echoing through the mines.
Prof winced. “George, honestly…”
“Prof get down here!” a cheery voice piped up. “We may have hit something!”
“Shut up, Josh!” George bellowed. “It’s just some more shiny dirt!”
Y’achoo!”
“Bless you,” Prof called wearily.
“Thank you,”
“Don’t bless the oaf for sneezing!” George shouted. “Get over here and tell the oaf what’s what!”
“You can do that yourself, George,” came the tired voice from deep in the mine.
“Prof, they’re fighting!” wailed yet another voice.
“Mmmmm!”
Prof sighed. Clearly it couldn’t be ignored any longer. He stood and straightened his shirt with dignity. Then, he cupped his hands to his mouth and bellowed, “Shut up, stop fighting, and get back to work!”
He sat back down.
“Good heavens,” he muttered. “Armchair parenting your brothers. They really should just move back in with Mother if they insist on this idiocy,”
Prof was a dwarf. As were his six brothers, George, Josh, Casper, William, Timothy and Percy. As you can imagine, they were all short. The tallest dwarf was Timothy, at a whopping five feet even, missing World’s Tallest Dwarf by only two inches. The shortest dwarf was Percy, at 4’5.
They were all named Mason, after their father. Prof often marveled at their luck that he hadn’t been named Orpheus or Obadiah or Oswald or something else horrendous like that. Mason was a fairly normal last name.
They lived, all seven of them, in a cozy cottage on the very edge of the Ebony Forest.
Prof was 4’8. He was nearly 153 years old, which is just verging on senior citizenship for a dwarf. To understand this, just know that a dwarf has a hundred years on the life span of a human. Therefore, Prof, in human years, was only about 53. He had a beard he kept nice and short so it wouldn’t be chopped off or singed by acid in one of his experiments (again). All his hair, facial or otherwise, was mostly gray at that point, but still its true brown showed here and there. His face was tanned and leathery from such a long life working so hard, for everything Prof did, he did with his whole self. He had big ears, a big nose, as all dwarves do, and he wore small, thick, round bifocals, as he was rather nearsighted and farsighted. He’d gone to college for twenty years to become a Professor of Geology, but he’d studied just about everything he was interested in.
George, the second oldest, was 146. He’d aged into a spicy, bitter old pickle, due to tragic loss, deep heartache, and lifelong habit. He was 4’7 ½, and had a haggard, scraggly, stubbly face. He’d just never been able to grow a real beard, which peeved him. Many, many, many things peeved George Mason. He’d fought in a war (it’s rather unimportant which one…don’t worry, they were victorious), and had a slight limp from a battle injury.
Josh was 143. He was by far the jolliest, friendliest, most ridiculously optimistic dwarf that ever lived. He had a bushy beard, and was extremely fat. He often joked about losing weight like it was the funniest thing in the world. His stout height of 4’6 ¾ (yes, that is a height) made him look positively like a young St. Nicolas. He’d always been happy and sunny, which was a good thing, I guess. After George, his mother had considered being the first dwarf to have only two children, unable to endure even the idea of two impossible children.
Casper was 138. He was 4’7, loved fine cheese, and had a chronic sleep disorder. He barely slept at all at night, but he was constantly dozing during daylight hours. He might have invested his time in writing about the many experiments with dreams he’d experimented in, but he could never manage to stay awake long enough. This was rather a nuisance to his brothers, but after 75 years living together, they’d gotten used to it.
William had always dreamed of seeing the world. However, he was allergic to anything that pollinated, and all forms of dust and dander. This had squelched his dreams of going out and seeking his fortune, certainly, and at 132, he felt his life had significantly stalled out. Living with his six brothers and mining for the rest of his days hardly struck him as living, but every time he encountered plant life, his watering eyes and running nose reminded him why he was stuck. He wasn’t unhappy, though, just wistful, and spent all his spare time reading about the adventures he’d always wanted to have.
Timothy was, as mentioned, 5’. Tall for a dwarf, certainly. He was 122, and he was what you would call the nervous type. Everything worried him, from a small lump on his (or anyone’s) toe, to a few storm clouds to the south. He was tough, though…he could certainly hold his own, but he couldn’t handle any extreme courage or fortitude without being in bed for a week recovering from acute anxiety. He didn’t know any life besides living with his brothers, and had no realized goals or dreams. He was probably the only dwarf one could say was truly unhappy with his lot, only because he was afraid so frequently, happiness tended to elude him.
Percy was the baby, at 118. He’d been born abnormally small, and very sickly. No one had really believed he would live, save his mother, who loved him with all her heart. Through her persevering affection and nurturing, Percy lived, but didn’t come out of his unhealthy infancy unscathed. He had never, ever learned to speak. He made a few inarticulate noises, but mostly, he communicated with gestures and expressions. He was also a little…well, odd. He did very strange things. But he didn’t seem miserable or confused…he just tended to live in his own world, which, from his cheerful behavior, one could only assume was far more pleasant than the normal world. His brothers had accepted him as the family buffoon, and after so many years, managed to put up with him fairly easily.
All this information may seem tedious, but it will help you tell the dwarves apart for future reference.
Anyway, with the situation as it was after a very long, and very disappointing day, it was most welcome relief when the old clock Prof kept in his workplace in the mine struck five deep, chiming tones, echoing through the mines.
As was their custom, all work ceased no matter what. Hammers were tossed aside. Wheelbarrows abandoned. Piles of equipment and rubble left to sit. Everything on hold till tomorrow (or, on a Friday, till the weekend was over). It made their progress in the mine seem continuous rather than day to day. And no one really felt like picking up after themselves and leaving it in a tidy state, anyway. After seventy-five years of nearly fruitless labor on one mine, you tend to let things go a little.
So they grabbed everything that they never left to thieves; Prof’s workbooks, any gold or jewels they may have found (which was always depressingly little), lunch pails and water canteens, and the canary, Ralph.
“Let’s get home, everybody!” Prof called, starting up the well-beaten path out of the mines.
They followed in no particular order; Tim directly behind Prof, out of sheer nervousness of being left behind, Josh after him, William, George, Percy, and Casper, who always lagged a little behind, yawning and dozing as he stumbled along.
Prof had to admit that, despite their lack of earthly riches that they still so hoped to someday find, they had it pretty good. A big old cottage out in the woods, with a garden and plenty of animals for food, they got along as well as anyone could expect seven brothers to, and they had a good hearty dose of solitude. Prof was not so old yet that he couldn’t be optimistic about life from time to time.
 
Chapter Two
It was a fairly long walk from home to work, and it was almost six, by Prof’s handy pocket watch. They crossed the little arched stone bridge over the river that ran in front of their house, and headed down the hill, where the gate was. A few years ago, in a spur of industrious activity, the dwarves had built a wooden fence with a gate around the cottage. The wood was graying and needed some paint, but it made the cottage look very pleasant.
Down the stone path they marched, up the porch, and through the door, joking and rough-housing as they always did. Jackets, boots, and anything else that was not needed at that very moment were all thrown about on the floor, or, if someone was feeling particularly tidy, onto a chair or some other surface.
That is, to say, the cottage was a complete pigsty.
Not that a little TLC couldn’t have helped it. It was very nice; the downstairs was spacious and roomy, with a dining room, kitchen, den, a workplace for Prof, and, through the door in the den, a long, narrow bedroom with all their beds and dressers. The upstairs was still a few rickety floorboards and not much else; the industrious spirit had fled right after they finished the fence and the tornado ditch.
They quickly clamored to the table, all except Prof, being the only one with a modicum of tidiness, who went to put his books away on their shelf.
“Where’s the food?” George snarled, heading for the table, scowling as he stomped across layers of clothing and discarded items.
They all started in towards their supper…and stopped short.
“Who ate half my dinner this morning!?” George roared.
“And mine!” Tim wailed.
“Y’achoo! Me, too! Which one of you’s a glutton?”
“What’s all this?” Prof asked, frowning as he came to the table.
“Somebody ate half of every plate!” Casper cried.
“It was you, wasn’t it!” George shouted, pointing his fork at Josh. “You did seem a little too happy this morning!”
Josh looked deeply offended. “I did no such thing, you pompous old dingbat!” He then smiled good-naturedly. “Ah, well. We won’t starve,”
“Now hold on there!” George ordered. “I wanna know who’s been taking more than their fair share!”
“Yeah, it’s not like this stuff was all that tempting, anyway,” William muttered, rubbing his nose and pushing his watery beans, stale biscuit, and tough bits of chicken around.
“Food is food is food!” George snapped. “And I’m gonna get a measly amount of food because one of you was greedy and helped yerself to a second breakfast!”
“Get a grasp, George, and put a sock in it!” Prof ordered. “It doesn’t matter too terribly much how this happened. There’s still plenty of food. Let’s just eat.”
So they ate a tense meal, George giving all of them a hairy eyeball, muttering and choking down the terrible cooking. Not a one of them could cook worth two carrots, but over time they got used to drinking a lot of molasses to wash the taste out of their mouths.
After dinner, they were all still hungry and grumbling, so Prof recommended an early bed for them all. He, of course, was exempt to read in his study if he so desired, being the eldest.
Most of his brothers rejected this theory, and started cheating at gin or marbles. Casper, however, who was always tired, thought this was an excellent idea. He staggered off to the bedroom, looking forward to sleeping in his nice bed.
He went in, and lit an oil lamp, trying to find his pajamas. As the light filled the corners of the room, he noticed a person-shaped lump in Tim’s bed down near the end. He frowned.
“Thought you wanted to stay up and play marbles, Timmy,” he yawned.
No answer. Casper shrugged. Far be it from him to rouse a fellow sleeper. He put on his pajamas and climbed in bed, happily nestling down amid the sheets, and in five seconds, was out cold.
Meanwhile, Percy was bored. He wanted to play gin, but George told him he absolutely could not because he always lost anyway so just go do something else. He wanted to play marbles, but Tim told him that he was playing alone, thank you very much. He wanted Prof to read to him, but Prof was reading some very big, very dusty book about geometric formulas or rare species of whales, which Percy didn’t really want to hear about.
Having absolutely nothing else to do, Percy despairingly decided to just go to bed and be very grumpy and make everyone feel bad when they came to bed, too.
When he got into the bedroom and lit the lamp, he saw Casper, drooling and snoring. He turned away and found a nightshirt in the heap of dirty and clean clothes. It was one of Tim’s, and therefore, way too long for Percy, but Percy didn’t care. He rather liked the way it billowed around him. So he marched off to his own bed, which came right after Tim’s. Since Tim was the tallest dwarf, and he the smallest, he had to go around Tim’s long, jutting out bed to get to his own.
As he passed Tim’s bed, he heard a high, drowsy, murmuring noise. He turned, and saw that Tim was in bed.
Percy frowned. Tim had been just out in the den, playing his silly marbles all alone, hadn’t he? He walked around to the head of the bed where he could shake Tim and make faces at him for tricking him, and as he did, he saw Tim’s hair poking out from under the blankets.
Only…it was not Tim’s hair.
Tim had light hair. Yellow hair.
This hair was black as night.
Percy frowned, wondering when Tim had gotten a black wig, and then, if this was even Tim at all. Curious and unafraid, he reached out and pulled the blankets back a little bit.
And he was frozen on his feet.
For there, laying in Tim’s bed, was the single most amazing thing Percy had ever seen in all his life.
It was…well, it was wow. It was…handsome. Very handsome. No…what was the word that Prof used to describe sunsets and flowers? Not handsome…pretty. Beautiful.
It was a person, that much Percy could gather. It had skin so white, it looked like snow. Its mouth was redder than beets or tomatoes. Red like blood. Its hair was darker than night…dark as sin, but shiny, beautiful. This creature lay, breathing slowly, in and out, sleeping. Soundly sleeping.
“Mm,” Percy hummed to himself, and he smiled widely. It’s pretty, he thought. I think I’ll keep it. I found it, after all. Then, a less fun thought crossed his mind. I should show Prof. It might not be good for keeping. And Prof will want to know. Prof wants to know everything.
So Percy, ignorant, innocent Percy, hurried out of the room. “Hmm!” he shouted when he got to the den.
None of his four brothers there even looked at him.
He yelled again, going over to Josh and kicking his boot.
“Ouch, Percy,” Josh said, smiling at him. “We’re almost done. You can play than,”
“That’s right, Percival,” Will muttered, concentrating on his cards.
Percy frowned at Josh, and pointed towards the bedroom.
“We’re not ready for bed, yet,” Josh said, turning back to the game. “Ooh…good card,”
“You’re bluffing,” George growled. He knew he was losing, but he didn’t have to like it. Or admit it.
Percy punched them both in the head.
“Ow!” George bellowed. “Why you little…”
“Whats going on now?” Prof asked, coming from the study.
“This little dumb pumpkin just clouted me in the noggin!” George yelled.
“I think he wants us all to go to bed,” Josh added, rubbing his forehead.
Prof looked sternly at Percy. “Stop that,”
Percy grabbed Prof’s hand and pointed, most urgently towards the bedroom.
What?” Prof asked. Sometimes the little fellow was just so hard to understand!
“Mmmm!” Percy insisted. “Mmmm!”
“Go to bed?” Prof asked.
Percy shook his head.
By this time, all the dwarves were looking on, trying to decipher what their youngest brother meant.
“Come?” Tim asked.
Percy nodded firmly.
All of us?” William asked.
Percy nodded again.
George moaned. “Honestly, this is just…”
“Is it important, Percy?” Josh asked.
Percy nodded so hard, his head looked like it might pop off.
“Not a chance. I’m staying right here, and so are the rest of you,” George growled. “Percy’s just being spoiled, as usual,”
“It won’t kill you, George,” Prof said, glaring at him. “Percy wants us to see something,”
Snarling, but feeling he couldn’t just stay while the rest of them walked off, George followed to the bedroom.
Casper was just droopily getting out of bed, having awoken with a great need to use the outhouse, as they all paraded in after Percy.
“Hm?” he mumbled. “Is it morning already?”
“The little mute wants us to see something,” George grumbled. “Probably just a—”
He was stopped short as Percy ripped the blankets back off of Tim’s bed.
They all took a step back, except for Percy.
There was absolute silence in the room, as they all stared at the creature lying in Tim’s bed.
It was gorgeous.
Each had a different reaction, but all were stunned.
Prof felt like he was looking at beauty embodied in one being, being of a poetic spirit, and his mind raced with logical and fantastical ideas at the same time.
George just stared, stunned beyond words, anger, or thought. He hadn’t seen any creature as beautiful as that since…since a very, very long time ago.
Josh gaped, laughing delightedly from time to time. This thing was just dandy. Just fine. Just lovely.
Casper felt like he was dreaming, and absolutely refused to wake up for some time.
William snuffled and stared and looked around at everyone else, trying to gauge the appropriate reaction, but somehow rather enjoying just looking at this thing anyway.
Tim was the only one who was absolutely terrified, cowering behind any of his brothers who were at hand, convinced doom had come upon him, since this thing was in his bed, after all. It was a sign. He was going to die. Probably by overexposure to bad singing or something equally torturous.
Percy just smiled smugly, planning out just how he would tell them that it was all his, since he found it, and finders keepers, and nyah nah, blah, blah, boo hoo!
“Oh…my…goodness,” Prof breathed.
“What is it!?” Tim asked, hysterical.
Percy started towards it.
Don’t!” they all cried.
“Don’t disturb it!” Josh said. “It’s so…beautiful,”
Beautiful,” Casper and William agreed.
Tim whimpered. “W-what is it, P-Prof?”
Prof was quiet for a minute. “I…I think I know,” he hurried quietly out of the room, to his study.
George knew what it was. But there was no way he was going to let anyone know he knew what it was.
Prof returned, breathless and flustered, flipping the pages of a very old, very worn book.
“Whats that?” Josh asked.
Prof didn’t answer, and finally, came to the page he was looking for. On it, was a very ornate, skilled illustration. It depicted a creature, similar to the one in the bed, sitting in a meadow.
He gazed at the picture, than back at the thing in the bed.
“Well?” Casper asked. “What is it?”
Prof looked up, his face enrapt, gazing at the bed and the beautiful being upon it.
“Its…a girl,”
They all paused, somewhat awed, and gazed in reverence at the girl.
“Ravishing,” Prof murmured.
Ravishing?” George grumbled. “Oh, beer…ain’t that a bit much?”
“What’s…a…a girl?” Tim stammered. “Do they bite?”
“Worse,” George said, his eyes wide and serious. “They steal your soul, dig their sharp nails into it, make you suffer…than leave you to die!”
Tim whimpered, and started to sway.
“Oh, get a grasp, George,” Prof said, glaring at him. “Girls are just like dwarvettes, Tim. But…human,”
Ahh,” William said. “That’s what I thought. I must say, though…these girls…they make dwarvettes look like cows!”
“Dwarvettes are cows,” George muttered, rolling his eyes.
“It’s in my bed,” Tim whined matter-of-factly.
“Ah, thou astute dwarf,” George said sarcastically.
“George, shut your yap,” Prof ordered. “Look…we can’t wake it up. Look at her…her dress is tattered. She looks exhausted. We should let her sleep,”
“But where will I sleep?” Tim wailed.
Shhh!” six voices hissed.
“You can share with someone else tonight,” Prof whispered.
“But none of the other beds are long enough!” Tim whimpered. “I’ll wake up all cramped…I’ll throw my back out for life!”
“Oh, honestly, Tim,” William said, rubbing his eyes. “Come on, you can share with me,”
“Your bed is too short!”
“Well I certainly ain’t sharing with you!” George snapped.
“Come on, everyone…its getting late,” Prof said. “Tim, I guess you’ll just have to sleep with me, since I’m the closest to your height,”
“Are you kidding?” Josh said, amazed. “Sleep in here, with a girl?”
They all stopped and thought about this.
Prof sighed.
“Well, I guess you have a point there, Josh. Everyone, grab your mat and some blankets. We’re sleeping in the den,”
“We won’t all fit in the den,” George grumbled.
“Well than we’ll sleep wherever we can find room,” Prof snapped, completely frazzled at this point.
So out of their bedroom the dwarves trudged, hauling pillows, blnakets, and mats. None of them were too happy about it, but there was something creepy about the thought of sleeping in the same room as that thing…that girl.
George muttered ill cultured four-letter words as he nestled down in front of the stove, where he figured he might be a little warmer. “Stupid blasted females…blithering morons…trouble…trouble, trouble! Agh…how do these things happen to a nice guy like me? And out in the middle of nowhere, too!”
“Clam up, George,” Will moaned, rolling over and snuffling. The support on the floor was just terrible and his sinuses were draining.
“Its colder out here than in our room!” Tim whined.
Casper, of course, was out cold and said nothing.
“Oh, just be quiet everyone!” Prof pleaded, trying his best to get comfortable despite his aching back. “We’ll figure it out in the morning. Go to sleep,”
But who could possibly sleep when there was a drop-dead gorgerous girl sleeping in the other room!? Not even Casper dozed off for long, and soon, they were all wide awake, wondering. Who was she? How had she gotten here? Why? What was wrong with the universe!?
Only Percy thought the biggest question:
I wonder…will she stay?

Comments

You're doing an AMAZING job

You're doing an AMAZING job with this! The dwarves are hilar! I especially like the part before this one. So suspenseful! I like Hunter.. I think she's going to marry him. Just saying... hehe

Renee | Tue, 06/07/2011

Thank you so much! Yeah...the

Thank you so much! Yeah...the dwarves are basically my family, only a tad crazier :D. They are by far my FAVORITE part of this story : ).

Clare | Tue, 06/07/2011

:)

I love the dwarves! :) 

Kyleigh | Tue, 06/07/2011

Another GREAT chapter!!!

Your descriptions of the dwarves (dwarfes?) was perfect!!! And I laughed  a few times too, especially at their thoughts about Snow White. Percy is my favorite. :) 

Well...anyway....MORE!!!

Madeline | Thu, 06/09/2011

everything was better when/you would call and I'd be like/yeah babe, no way

I promise I will post more of

I promise I will post more of two differant stories (probably the other two since I just did this one) as SOON as my posts reset! Promise! : )

Clare | Thu, 06/09/2011

I love it!

The dwarves are hilarious.  I sincerely hope this is a novel length story and you post more soon.

 

Micheala | Fri, 06/10/2011

Indeed : ). I AM getting a

Indeed : ). I AM getting a little wary of posting so much online, though :-/. I wish you could trust people. Ugh. But I promise I will post more of this for the time being : ).

Clare | Fri, 06/10/2011

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