Monday, January 11, 2010

Entry #130

Braids Flying
by Lucy S.


Ashley Beamon ran through the trees, hair and skirts flying, braids and bootlaces coming undone as she tripped over a tree root. Breathing hard, Ashley stopped, leaned against a tree, and caught her breath. She risked everything running out in the middle of the night to escape Thomas, her husband.

Like a horse sold to slaughter, Beamon married his daughter to the aged Thomas Baker for a paltry sum of six pigs and a bonnet of beeswax. Ashley felt the full measure of her fourteen years when Thomas tried to touch her, and when she shied away, called her a witch and worse, said she had the frenzy and threatened to send her to Bedlam in the morning, where she’d be chained to the wall with the lunatics and left to die in her own madness. Once Thomas had fallen asleep, she’d crept out the door, quiet as a field mouse. Ashley knew her folly in leaving a home and security but dared not stay another moment in the hands of such a man. She’d run all night and stopped a moment to rest, when a crow screeched overhead and she’d woken up in the morning light. Half frozen with cold, Ashley’s eyes opened softly, briefly wondering where she was. The reality of last night’s flight hit her like a shock of ice water, and she brushed off the leaves she’d burrowed under. Hearing voices nearby, she silently thanked the crow for waking her, and fled further into the forest.

26 comments:

lena said...

I wish she finds peace and comfort. Nicely done.

Aniket said...

Ashley's emotions flow effortlessly throughout the piece. And it makes a connection. Hope she gets her peace.

Tara said...

I'd have done the same thing. Nice portrayal of her despair.

Rose Apprentice said...

Love the imagery in the first paragraph.

Bernita said...

Good use of title to underline her age and vulnerability.

Leatherdykeuk said...

Oh! Poor girl. You write her fight very well.

Meghan said...

Run, Ashley, run! Well done.

Craig said...

Great imagery.

Four Dinners said...

I have this very strong urge to beat up her husband and father.

Got my emotions did that. Really well written.

Leah said...

I really like this, especially the image of her burrowing under the leaves and then fleeing further into the forest.

austere said...

Very nice.
so've packed so much into so little.
Loved that tinge of antiquity you've given this tale.

Lee Hughes said...

A great piece that flowed effortlessly, making you take up her plight and want her to to escape.

laughingwolf said...

run, ashley...

Laurel said...

Another crow in the good guy camp! I hope Ashley makes a complete escape.

Deb S said...

Nice job of provide a sense of time and place. Loved the line "...a paltry sum of six pigs and a bonnet of beeswax."

kashers said...

Good sense of time provided in the sum set by Ashley's father with Thomas Baker.

Run, run Ashley.

Patsy said...

Can't help hoping she reaches a place of safety.

pjd said...

Poor thing. At least she escaped. Nicely written, and I especially love the beginning. Aw, I like it all. I would read more about Ashley.

Kartik said...

Nice touch of the olden days!

catvibe said...

Oh... Such a sad scenario. I hope she finds peace and a warm loving home in her flight.

JaneyV said...

I feel sick for her. You wrote her so vibrantly I am torn between wanting to hug her, feed her and send her to school and shouting "run Ashley, run as fast as you can!"

So well written. Well done.

Christian Bell said...

This piece flows so well that you can read through it very quickly. There is certain hurried intensity right from the get-go as Ashley is running and continues through to the end, which I think is what you were going for. Great job.

James R. Tomlinson said...

I certainly can picture this setting. You've done a wonderful job with the setting.

Sarah Laurenson said...

Wonderful job with setting, characterization. I feel I know where she is in space and time and what kind of people her father and husband are.

Two nits: too many Ashley's and too long a paragraph.

Other than that, this is excellent.

Chris Eldin said...

I felt her sense of urgency, and admired many of your word choices. Nicely written!

Aerin said...



my caveat

Something I Would Keep

yes, the pigs and bonnet of beeswax - also the threat of the asylum - great job setting this in history

Something I Might Tweak

Surely Thomas has "tried to touch her" before? If not, is this her wedding night?