She Walks in Beauty

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nightmytime
This is a quote from Dickens’ The Old Curiosity Shop. In fact it’s the first line. I thought immediately of vampires and reworked Byron’s She Walks In Beauty from the perspective of a monster.


We’re all denied the gaudy days, yet once I dared those decaying rays.

For a sweetness.

She had the nameless grace that only the living possess, but something more besides; a soft serenity that eloquently expressed her thoughts.

I watched as she floated amongst the headstones. She was adorned with brightness, a white flowing dress emblazoned by the baleful sunshine and crowned by delicious tresses of rampant gold.

I could not resist. The hunger was rife.

A row of melancholy yew trees stretched from my undercroft to within touching. Their twisted shadows promised a safe passage.

Without control, I shuttered my limbs up through the musty opening and crawled unseen into the shade. I jerked and crept closer, a mindless moth becharmed by the glow of the moon.

She was kneeling before a familiar grave now, her mind trammelled by the thing below.

Closer still, and closer I wriggled, my clapperclaws outstretched. I could so nearly engulf her purity.

A breeze shuffled the branches above and a stabbing fire erupted inside my hands and across my cheek. The deathly sunlight seared into my limpid skin and I wailed.

She started and shuffled back. There was fear in her aspect and her eyes, not terror.

I writhed away, spasming back along the avenue of yew tree shade.

Somehow the pity hurt more than the pain.

She is a creature of daylight, and now night is generally my time for walking.


The three winning entries can be found here

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