Butterfly Mask

The room was cold. It tasted like blue on the tip of Fran’s tongue. Blue splayed out in delicate tendrils to cover her face. In another time, the blue would’ve made her shiver; now Fran welcomed it.
Colour had come into her life. Colours that she could smell, hear, touch and taste. Colours that encircled her like a silk veil. Fran didn’t know how she’d ever lived without the knowledge her new found senses had brought.
The scent of pink wafted over to her. Its gentle fragrance settled over her upturned face.
Musical notes of purple, green and yellow followed.
The sensations the colours evoked in Fran were exhilarating. Fran felt like she was floating; a sparkle of gold travelling a rainbow; a butterfly trapped in a human cocoon.
Soon the black would come calling again however.

Sarah watched her mother smear the contents of a make-up kit over her face, giggling and chattering away to herself.
Fran had shown no sign that she was even aware of Sarah’s presence. Not when Sarah had opened the windows; not when she’d spoken softly in Fran’s ear or raised the bouquet of roses for her mother to smell.
Sarah even played a recording of Puccini’s Madame Butterfly, Fran’s favourite opera. Not even the familiar strands of beautiful music had caused a reaction.
Dr Symonds entered the room, quickly took in Fran’s painted face and hands and strode to Sarah’s side, ‘I’m sorry, Sarah. We’ve done all we can. The damage the head injury your mother sustained has manifested itself in ways that simply have us baffled.’
‘Psychiatric ward then?’
‘Maybe they’ll have some success…’
‘Don’t get your hopes up,’ they looked up as Sarah’s father breezed into the room and over to his wife, placing his hands firmly on Fran’s shoulders.
Dr Symonds noticed Fran’s sudden stillness. His mind filled with suspicions.

Fran felt the black ooze in. Its dense song settled heavily on her shoulders. Fran felt a sharp jab and her rainbow receded. The darkness would last longer this time, but vibrant colour awaited her on the other side.

© Alison Pearce 2009

Butterfly Mask

Alison Pearce

Logan Central, Australia

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Artist's Description

For Star Twisters #56

Prompt – Choose a picture from the Twisted Tales Gallery and base a story around it. I chose to use ArtistaDonna’s pencil drawing titled Butterfly Woman

Word Count – 349

Once again, I have had to cut back significantly to meet the word count!! I hope nothing important is lost in translation :)

Artwork Comments

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