Day by day, the sky transforms into a blush blue before cascading into an array of oranges and purples, but I have never found myself fancied by such trivial details of the light. Instead, the shadows of the night intrigue my curiosity, the thrill of adventure mingled with danger wrenching itself into every fibre in my body. Had Kingsley not controlled my darker desires of exploring the premises by locking my bedroom door each night, I would have found myself deep within the rose gardens many times, basking in the harsh moonlight sprinkled throughout the land.
Kingsley has reiterated to me that I was never one for engaging in conversation, for his hobby when not commanding the other servants is observing my behaviors. Conversation is futile when life is fleeting, so to spend my day partaking in discussion with another being is rewardless. Kingsley has noted recently, though, that I am more engaged when speaking to him, my gloomy face seemingly upturned into that of a smiling one each morning.
"You look charming this morning," he will muse.
"Thank you, dear Kingsley," I can only respond with.
He has heard me speaking each night through the heavy door of my room, though I am not sure how he is able to hear me when I specifically requested for a soundproof door.
But he is correct, for I have made a friend. Through all of my internal banter about the benefits of engaging with others, I have found comfort in the presence of a little boy who appears in my room each night, singing the songs he has practiced in school and reciting to himself the lessons he has learned that day. I find him to be a comfort in the midst of a nightly routine of being locked in the room and away from my interests, and while Kingsley has been less of a friend to me as of recently, the boy has taken his place as my new acquaintance. He does not speak to me directly, but I find this to be a matter of respect rather than one of avoidance. After all, he finds no reason to banish me from the room after he is the one rudely entering without permission, and Kingsley seems to know him quite well. Therefore, I should find no reason not to trust him.
I have had enough of Kingsley the more I ponder the intrusions he has made onto my lifestyle. Within my own house, I should be the one to make the rules about how I live, but I have given up such a necessity to the servants who never look me in the eye and never curtsy as I walk by. I should find reason to replace them, but I have no desire to do so when they are adequate at the jobs they have been given.
Sometimes, the child does not appear in my room, and I wake up with a rich melancholy sitting heavily upon my heart; consequently, I deposit my bottled emotions onto Kingsley, the one who keeps me from my roses. I have decided that it is time to face Kingsley with the fears I find burdening me, for I wish to be reunited with the garden I dream of so fondly as the black cat dreams of luck.
"My friend, I only prevent you from going to the garden each night because there are dangers in the world that we must protect you from," he begins.
"I have no say in my own wellbeing, so what has possessed you to say such a thing? Should not I enjoy the flowers of my own garden?"
"For your safety I fear only," Kingsley sighs. "You must not venture out of the room past the hours of evening. You know just as I do there are dangers within this household that we cannot control."
How ominous such a command can be! I have no choice but to escape by myself, only if "escape" is the word that can describe my pursuit of freedom. I find myself in imprisonment the more I react to such a statement, but Kingsley would never do a friend such a way!
Out the window I must go, a secret prepared to diffuse past the lips of an unsuspecting fellow. As carefully as I can remove myself from the building, I hear the footsteps of a man entering the room, and the silhouette of Kingsley's figure is splattered upon the brick walls opposite the window. I peer from outside, only to find a sinister look carved into his face, his eyes shaped like those of a madman's. The garden is only so far from the room, and I run faster than I can feel the sharp wind chipping at my exposed ankles. I feel as though I am floating, and the garden is a paradise toward which I am quickly approaching.
The roses have changed, and instead of the white, delicate beauties I remember them being each day, they have turned into black, porcelain figures that shatter as I touch them.
"You have reached the garden, even after I had warned you of its dangers," Kingsley growls. "Are you content with what you have done? What you have changed?"
"A garden means nothing, sir! How dare you speak to me in such a way? Am I not your source of employment? Your source of friendship?"
My heart can only take so much pain, so much suffering, and the little boy of the room appears behind Kingsley, a strange man holding onto his hand.
"Kingsley! What are you doing alone in the garden at such an hour? Should you not be asleep?" the man asks, and I feel offended at the lack of acknowledgement of my presence.
I only see red as Kingsley pounces onto the man, the black roses surrounding me suddenly reaching toward me. One of the thorns pricks my back, and the bushes continue encircling me as I watch the man repeatedly attack Kingsley. I watch and scream, but to no avail, the man takes his control over my estranged friend.
The moment I watch Kingsley's hand finish trembling on the ground, I disappear into the black roses of the night.