The Mask

October 8, 2010
By AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
48 articles 3 photos 608 comments

Favorite Quote:
"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)


She stood, regal as a queen and mighty as a goddess, at the bottom of the old-fashioned spiral staircase. Her green eyes, like clear sharp emerald crystals, bored into the soldier’s very heart and shot shards of ice into his blood.

“Nyx, darling.” She stalked cat-like towards where the crimson-and-bronze-clad soldier stood at attention, his very flesh as rigid as it’s metal casing. He clutched his red-plumed helmet in his hands with white knuckles, as if life itself dwelled in the gently quaking feather. She reached him and leaned in, full scarlet lips close to his face, eyes meeting his. An expression that could have – no, should have – revealed the tenderness of love, but on her pale chiseled face, spoke only of hemmed-in malice.

She raised a long, dainty, ebony painted finger and traced the soldier’s strong, handsome jaw line, tipping his chin up. His eyes flashed with pain, and she laughed, humorlessly, coldly, as she drew her finger away, it’s porcelain flesh tainted with a trail of bright red blood dripping from her sharpened nail. “You have made a grave mistake.”

The soldier remained frozen, though out of fear or duty who’s to say. A single drop of pure ruby blood dripped from his chin onto the white marble floor. Neither the soldier nor the woman paid it any mind.

She took a deep breath, exquisitely and unfittingly beautiful in her black dress. She was as gorgeous as an angel, but no warmth of beauty surrounded her. Rather a cold chill pierced all who were unfortunate enough to be near her. “You let the prisoner escape, let him stow away upon a vessel, on his way to a country where he is free to disclose all that he knows about our government. Everything we have devoted ourselves to concealing. Do you realize the gravity of this situation?” The soldier was still, and an instant later a loud smack reverberated against the sword-adorned walls of the empty entry hall. A perfect dainty female hand was pulsing red and bruised on the soldier’s cheek. “Answer me.” Her bell-like voice was calm and sweet, betraying no emotion.

“Yes, I understand.” No reaction was elicited. Her green eyes remained impassive as the soldier fought to keep his knees from shaking under her burning gaze.

“And yet they escaped.” The soldier gulped, barely able to squeeze the word passed his lips.

“Yes.” Her mask of calm slipped off her face like fabric being whisked away. For an instant – just an instant – her countenance twisted and contorted with fury, despair and desperation. For just an instant – no longer, she was both painfully human in her emotion and eerily supernatural in the intensity and coldness exploding from those deadly serpent-green eyes. Then, as swiftly as it had come, the passionate, irate fire was gone. The mask was reapplied – perfectly, flawlessly, seamlessly replacing the image of Medusa with that of a fine china doll. The faint sound of metal knee-plates shaking against each other was all that could be heard in the lonely room.

She met the soldier’s eyes once more, holding him captive in their dangerous depths. He didn’t know what she was doing until he felt cold unforgiving steel laid, almost gently on his throat. He tried to swallow the bile that was rising, but the blade restricted him as it pressed, caressing his neck, lovingly biting at his flesh, milking from him precious drops of scarlet liquid.

“You have failed me, Nyx.” The knife pressed harder, carving into his hide so smoothly it felt like a favor. A small smile played upon her ruby lips. “And for that you must die.”


The author's comments:
Okay, so this was totally random. I was upset earlier, and once I had vented to my mom, I got food and laughed and chatted like nothing had happened. Then I got to thinking about how everybody has some degree of a mask on, because if we broke down every time something upset us, we would never get anywhere with life. Then I thought about how funny it was to see people recover and move on with their lives, because everyone is so different. So I decided to write a story about somebody with a mask that they can take on and off within a space of an instant. Then I realized how insanely cliche that is, so I decided to do it with the twist of the one hiding the emotion being a villain. What do you think?

Similar Articles

JOIN THE DISCUSSION

This article has 12 comments.


AsIAm PLATINUM said...
on Mar. 31 2011 at 5:33 pm
AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
48 articles 3 photos 608 comments

Favorite Quote:
"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)

haha Thanks.  It was totally not like me, but whatever. :)

PJD17 SILVER said...
on Mar. 31 2011 at 5:24 pm
PJD17 SILVER, Belleville, Illinois
8 articles 0 photos 624 comments

Favorite Quote:
I do the best imatation of myself- Ben Folds

it's an interesting idea  i like it

AsIAm PLATINUM said...
on Nov. 17 2010 at 6:29 am
AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
48 articles 3 photos 608 comments

Favorite Quote:
"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)

Okay - I will keep that in mind. :)  Thanks so much!

on Nov. 17 2010 at 6:09 am
NeverCaredForKool-Aid GOLD, Elkridge, Maryland
13 articles 0 photos 531 comments

Favorite Quote:
I don't believe in hell but I believe in my parent's couch-- Watsky

I like this one too :)  The description in this was good, although I though you migth've over dome the eyes a little bit.  Not by a lot, but only becasue that seems to be the one feature that everyone focuses on, they always seem overdone to me I guess.  This is my second favorite story of yours, right after skipped a beat :)

AsIAm PLATINUM said...
on Nov. 13 2010 at 3:50 pm
AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
48 articles 3 photos 608 comments

Favorite Quote:
"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)

Thanks!!! As I said in the description, the emotional masks everybody wears intrigue me, but it is so cliche to write about them, I had to come up with something off the wall.  I'm glad it paid off!

FunFace GOLD said...
on Nov. 13 2010 at 1:32 pm
FunFace GOLD, Washington, District Of Columbia
11 articles 0 photos 63 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Z is for zed which is for fred which is for harry potter which is for couldron, DUH" -My friend and I

wow, i really like thi. I have read all the chapters from Duty: To Heart, and this is a very different style.  I still really like it and I like how you chose to try something new good work, it deffinitley scared me!

 


AsIAm PLATINUM said...
on Nov. 10 2010 at 1:06 pm
AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
48 articles 3 photos 608 comments

Favorite Quote:
"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)

haha Thanks - that was the intention. :D

on Nov. 10 2010 at 12:59 pm
Phoenix97 PLATINUM, Minneapolis, Minnesota
29 articles 4 photos 62 comments

Favorite Quote:
See lyrics to "Let the Waters Rise" by MIKESCHAIR and "Everything" by Lifehouse

This scared me, honestly. The villain is creepy in her lack of emotion until that sudden little bit when she removes the "mask." However, scary as it may be, I like this piece.

AsIAm PLATINUM said...
on Nov. 9 2010 at 8:02 pm
AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
48 articles 3 photos 608 comments

Favorite Quote:
"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)

Thanks a million :D

on Nov. 9 2010 at 7:00 pm
Healing_Angel SILVER, Sydney, Other
8 articles 2 photos 513 comments

Favorite Quote:
Live for today, not for tomorrow

I agree! Change "Neither the soldier nor the woman paid it any mind" to The soldier and the woman ignored it. It reads better. I love the wist. Very clever!  

AsIAm PLATINUM said...
on Oct. 23 2010 at 5:03 pm
AsIAm PLATINUM, Somewhere, North Carolina
48 articles 3 photos 608 comments

Favorite Quote:
"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)

Thanks! I'm glad you liked it! :D

on Oct. 23 2010 at 3:18 pm
blackmist BRONZE, Houston, Texas
1 article 0 photos 40 comments
Your descriptions are amazing! Great job.


SciArc

MacMillan Books

Aspiring Writer? Take Our Online Course!