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Lakewood Times

“A Noble Fortune”

Fractured Fairy Tale

The inky sky is decorated with stars hung from soft twine. And they flare like firecrackers.. The massive castle dominates the vast darkness of the warm September night. The darkness is silent, except for the sound of unsteady water and the chip of locusts as Maddox approaches the murky river at the base of the grand edifice. Skulls decorate the surface of the black water like lily pads in a pod. Reminders of the Queen’s conquests and terror. Maddox stands patiently at the bank, waiting for the remnants of his father to carry past him. 

He didn’t know who she was when they met. He has tried over and over to remind himself of who she is; what she comes from and who she’s destined to be. But here he is anyway. The scent of death reaches up from the river and creeps into his nose. The precious scent of his love affair. When he refocuses on the task at hand he peers down as the remnants of his father floats past him. 

Suddenly Maddox is reminded of the day he and his mom buried an empty casket. The sun was just beginning to set; it was beautiful like a classic oil painting. The flowers sang sweetly. The faces of his mother and her friends were sullen. Mourning hung over Underland like a heavy veil. 

“My poor sweet Peter!.” his mother sobbed; her face streaked with tears. He watched as she collapsed to the ground, gripping his green beanie; a reminder of the night they met. 

Now, she keeps it on the top of her night table. It’s still tattered from the struggle he endured moments before his death. 

One day not too long ago, he never believed he would ever feel a pain quite like her’s. But now each night, he is meant to prowl around on the grand floors of Crims. However, tonight Maddox finds himself uncertain. The thing that snaps him out of his nightmarish memory is the flicker of light in the window above. Like a beacon in the darkness Adelaide’s silhouette appears. 

“Dox?” her soft voice floats through the air and reminds him of why he does this.

He precariously steps across the skulls and emerges on the other side. He walks along the coarse bricks, and rounds the corner of the castle; to where the old servant’s door is decaying. The basement is dark and it takes a minute for him to find the door. 

The hallways are full of candle light; it’s warm and tranquil. The red velvet carpets stretch out down the halls and sweep up the stairs. It’s here that he sees Adelaide, leaned against the wall.

“Hi.” she says as a grin stretches across her face. 

Her chambers are decorated with the same elegance as the rest of the castle. Maddox can never help but stare in awe at the grandiose chandelier, cascading from the ceiling. The ambient glow from the candle light illuminates only what they want to see. 

The room is quite lavish, more beautiful than comfortable. The bed rests in the corner of the room wrapped in thinly veiled fabrics. They lay down and immediately sink into the cashmere covered mattress. Adelaide rests her head on his shoulder and draws the fabrics close. The proclivity of the world melts away as they sink deeper. While the night slowly bleeds: mourning will come soon. 


“Addie?” he whispers. 

Her eyes flutter open. “Yeah?” She responds sleepily.

“Did you ever get that vile from your dad?”


He looks around, relishing in the sweet moment. Taking in every detail, the way the light glows outside the fabrics, the weight of her head on his chest. 

Adelaide sits up. “Neverland?”

He gazes down at her, no words are spoken, but they both know what’s next.


She guides him around the castle floors and out to the courtyard. She takes him to the opposite end, and they begin their ascension up the spiral stairs. Adelaide says the view from the clock tower is beautiful at this time of night. 

They reach the top. The turning of the gears and incessant tick of the clock erk Maddox, in just the slightest. Adelaide pushes the service door open and waits for him to step through. 

Standing on the thin ledge of the tower, he dares a quick glance at the ground below. They’ve been planning to run away for months, but it always seemed like a fantasy until now. Adelaide steps out through the door, and they inch around the side to the North face. 

Looking at the desolation of the land ahead, he turns his head. “Are you sure?”

“Now, you’ve stopped believing in your dad?” she scoffs.

“You’re right, I know.” An unsteady feeling begins to swell in his stomach.

Adelaide reaches out for his hand, and she squeezes it tight, out of anger, or possibly fear, who’s to say. Regardless, they are eager for their next adventure together. One finally over their own, no longer controlled by their angry, vindictive parents. They might’ve just been kids but they weren’t alone. 

As they take their last steps, ready to leave, they realize they’ve made a mistake. The stories Peter used to tell his son were simply stories. As they begin to free fall, they wrap themselves together, preparing for what is now their inevitable fate. No one is around, to see what they’ve become. They lay under the inky sky and the stars hung on soft twine, straight on til’ morning.

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