A story of love, dreams, hope, and bitterness
“Why do we have to do this gross work when we could be playing in the fields with the other children?” my sister, Maryam Rose, questioned with her big, round doe eyes blinking innocently.
I thought about that for a while. The sky was beautiful- painted blue and streaked with light purple and torqiuose. The grass in the wide fields where little children frolicked around in their long, lacy white dresses was a bright chartreuse green and swaying with the calm spring breeze. Clouds were like cotton candy and the flowers were colorful and in full bloom.
To sum it up, it was a perfect day in England today. But here I was, wiping down the expensive marble table with lemon scented cleaner as my little ten year old sister was dusting the shelves.
“Because,” I answered, brushing my brown bangs out of my face, “people are cruel and want us to do their dirty work, that’s why.”
I held in my feelings. I told Maryam the answer of that question in the nicest and simplest way I could ever explain it to a ten year old child, who still hasn’t gotten down her lefts and rights, for goodness sake. Plus, mother would freak out if I cursed in front of a little girl.
Maryam stood on her very tiptoes to dust the top of the trinket shelf, knocking over a glass seahorse figurine while doing so.
That’s when I really couldn’t hold it in anymore and yelled a really really bad word at the top of my lungs. I rushed over to the fallen and shattered glass statue and started picking up every piece. Maryam looked afraid, her doe eyes wider than ever.
“Charlotte,” Maryam said quietly, “will Madame Amelia get us in trouble?”
“Oh, for goodness sake Maryam, of course we’re going to get in trouble! You’ll loose your one hour playing privilege, and we’ll probably be skipping dinner tonight because we’re replacing Madame Amelia’s rare collectable, which, by the way, was one of a kind,” I said angrily, clenching my fists.
What I didn’t mention though, was that I’d be in for a good yelling at later. That’s what I look forward to the least every time careless Maryam messed up. Although it’s Maryam’s fault, supposedly it’s mine. Always mine. You know what’s not my fault? The fact that I’m seven years older than her and I know better, despite my sorry lack of education.
“Charlotte, I’m sorry,” Maryam apologized in a low voice.
I took a few deep breaths. “Yes, Maryam, it is okay.”
Really, it wasn’t, but the little girl didn’t need to know.
Sighing, I finished wiping up the table. I felt like a maid, helpless and hardworking. Madame Amelia brags to everyone that she has the “best hard-workers in all of the land!” Of course, she only says that when other people are around. When it’s just me and her, she slaps my back and yells at me to get working, calling me a dirty slave, a mutt, and other nasty things that I don’t dare put into words.
I placed the wet rag into the kitchen sink and walked into my room- a small grey room that is like a box. It smells musty and is the one things Madame doesn’t make me clean.
I wonder why.
Sitting down on my dust-filled bed, I started spreading pearl pink lip gloss all over my face while looking outside, swooning over a boy. A boy who’s name I have yet to learn. He has almond brown hair, waterfall blue eyes, and a gorgeous golden complexion only the best of royals have. I can tell that he’s a prince because of his lopsided crown on the side of his head. He looks like a good boy.
I’m a bad girl.

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