A Drink with a Princess
Short story by Iris Carden
She was stunning, like no woman he’d ever seen before.
When he sat down beside her at the bar, he thought he didn’t have a chance. Punching above his weight. Way above his weight. But he was going to try.
“Buy you another?” he asked, trying to sound casual and indicating her glass.
“Why thank you, handsome stranger,” she said. Her voice sounded the way cats would purr, if cats were made of liquid silk.
He paid the bartender, then turned to look directly in her face. Her eyes made him catch his breath. They were dark, almost black. They made him think of glossy melted dark chocolate.
“My name’s Tim,” he said. “And you are?”
“You may call me Princess.” She rolled the r in “Princess” deliciously.
“Princess huh? Love that accent. Where are you from Princess?”
“I’m from everywhere and nowhere. I’m from exotic islands and endless deserts. I’m from places that don’t exist anymore.”
“O…K… So, you travel around a bit. Me, I’m a local. Haven’t been anywhere much. I’d love to go overseas sometime, though.”
He wondered if perhaps she was on something a little more than alcohol, but looking at her, at her eyes, at the grace of her every little gesture, listening to that voice, he didn’t really care. He was hooked, and he couldn’t even tell if she was interested in him.
“So Princess,” he said, “what do you do?”
“I’m a Princess,” she purred. “I do whatever I want.”
She really was on something, but maybe he wanted some of it, too.
“I’m a mechanic,” he said. “It’s pretty boring. Not as exciting as being a Princess, obviously.”
“Your life doesn’t have to be boring.” She purred.
“You could travel with me. I’m looking for a new servant.”
“Be a servant? To a Princess?” She really was on something, but what the heck? “Of course, Princess, I’ll follow you around the world and serve you.”
“Take this,” she said, taking a small white pill from her purse.
She really was on something. Ecstasy? Something else? Would he? He decided to live dangerously. He took the pill.
It was dark when he woke. Dark, and he was somewhere confined, lying on his back. The roof and walls seemed to be right against him.
Feeling around, he realised he was in a box. A coffin-sized box. Or maybe just a coffin. Was he still high? If so, he was never taking that stuff again.
He could hear scuffing noises above him. The lid was lifted off his box. Two strong, but silent men reached down to help him out of the box, the coffin, helped to lift him up out of the grave. Grave? This must be what people meant by a “bad trip.”
On the lawn beside the grave stood Princess.
“Slave,” she said. “Bow before your Princess.”
One of the men who’d lifted him out, pushed him to his knees.
He tried to ask what was going on, but realised with horror that he couldn’t speak. He no longer had a tongue.
This story is from my book, Patchwork.
An anthology of poetry and short stories.
Spend a sleepless night with The Possum in the Roof, or with a werewolf in Bad Moon Rising.