Masquerade Butterfly

"When the time comes, I will leave and you, my angel, you will stay, you are locked to this place… you must write beautiful pieces and your voice will carry through the hearts of many…"

"But why, Daddy? Why my voice?"

"You hold a gift… my darling… a very wonderful gift…"

"And… this gift, Daddy… what if I can't hold my gift forever?"

"Oh, you will… never will this gift leave you."

"Daddy, what if I can't write the words?"

"You must always write from your heart, not your head. My child, learn your gift, I am sorry for this life for you, but you must never leave here…"

"Never, Daddy?"

"Never… this is your home and it is safe. And when you think that you can't go on, you sing… you write…"

"I don't understand my gift, Daddy… I don't understand what I must do…"

"Your gift, well… you will have a very long life even after I have gone. But you must live it. Even when you are lost. Never give up your life, I am doing everything to keep you safe. Everything I do is for you. Do you understand?"

"I understand, Daddy…"

"Good girl… now, how old are you today?"

"Today, I am seven, I am going to be as old as you soon."

"I doubt it, my love… not anytime soon. But, when you are older, you will dance in ball gowns and learn to become a lady."

"Yes, Daddy… I will."

Ten years later

A piano played a very old love song within the stupendous, rich, beautiful home named 'Oakdale Manner' A large, glamorous home. This home could be fit for a grand total of thirty people to live in. Though, it only held two, plus maids and butlers. The grounds to the manner were all beautiful, well kept. Rose bushes were beautiful here when they bloomed. The grass was very well looked after. This was an upper class home, beautiful in everyway. Inside was even better. The inside of Oakdale manner is outstanding. Perfect is the word.

The piano played in the grand drawing room. Near a large window where there were drapes made from white muslin. Everything in each room was perfect. The windows were open slightly and a breeze carried in the sweet scent of the blooming roses out in the gardens upon the clear warm night.

At the piano sat a male. He was playing the delightful music as his fingers seemed to dance across the keys of the instrument. He wore black satin trousers and a white smart shirt with a handsome black velvet waistcoat and shiny black shoes. He had short, thick black hair and chestnut coloured eyes and was fifty years old. In his life, he had accomplished a lot. A famous music writer. His name was Arthur Cassle.

Arthur would throw magnificent dinner parties to show others his music. His work… his life. For Arthur loved his music. He had little family. A brother that had moved to another land. The only family he had around him now, was his daughter. To her, he would do anything. He only wished that she would become a lady…

As the music played on, a girl sat in her room, looking out of the windows to the gardens… to the outside that she had never walked. Her hair was jet black, like a starless sky on the darkness of nights. Her eyes were a beautiful cerulean blue and she wore a pretty, cream gown that trailed behind her if she were to walk, but she just sat, like a child, waiting for her mother to return. Though her mother would never return… for she was an angel, a child with God now.

The girl was seventeen years old. She had bloomed into a beautiful girl for her age. Her hair flowed half way down her back and was thick like her fathers. His music could be heard from her room. She looked to her grand four post bed with white silk sheets and pillow cases with pink butterflies stitched on… she had made the butterflies herself. She loved butterflies. So did her father.

She stood and walked across her room, the train of her dress followed. She no longer wished to look upon the gardens and out to the world that she must never visit. Though her heart begged to touch a growing rose. Sadness was always held in her eyes whenever she looked out of a window. But, it was her fathers' wish, he wanted her to stay within the walls… so, she would, she promised.

Her name was Marie. Her left hand traced through her black her and over her skin, her skin was pale as she had never been in the sun. She walked to the fireplace in her room and touched the freshly picked pink roses in her vase. She looked to a piece of paper that she had been writing on, she picked it up with her thin fingers and read it, then sang,

"Never in my life have I held someone close

To many I'm unheard of, I'm just a ghost

I'm never allow to wonder outside

Will I ever be anyone's bride?"

Marie sang, her voice was one made for an angel. Soft, delicate, yet held strong feelings and was very unique. But, among her many admirable qualities, her voice was most likely the most charming.

Marie soon left her room, walking towards the drawing room and towards her fathers' music. She entered the room, looking at him. She tried her best to act like a lady… for her fathers' sake. For, it is what he wanted. She slightly smiled and sat in a chair, listening to the music.

Arthur looked over to her and smiled, "How are you, my darling?"

"I am fine father…" Marie answered, "Thank you." she added and bowed her head to him. Her hands placed themselves gently into her lap, she and hated looking like a doll. She lowered her head.

The music stopped and Arthur walked towards her as he left the piano. He sat at her side and raised her chin with his finger, "What's wrong, child?" he asked. "You look so sad…"

Marie looked at him slowly, "I am tired, father." she answered.

"Then why don't you rest?" he asked and smiled. "Sleep…"

"I meant a different kind of tired, father…"

"Oh?" he asked, slightly puzzled.

"I wish to walk the grounds." she said and looked out to a window, passed the drapes. "Why can't I even walk into the gardens?" She asked, turning her head to look at him again. "Plus, you know how much I hate this… dressing up and… acting like a lady."

His eyes scanned over her, "I think you look beautiful."

"There is a lot more to life than beauty, father." she said sadly. "I hate being treated like a doll… like something the you just by dresses for." she said to him, though she tried to keep her feelings mostly inside, she begged herself not to cry… but, she had had enough of this… enough of being treated like glass. Though she didn't want to hurt her fathers' feelings.

Arthur was quiet, looking at her sadly. He held her hand, "But, my love… you are a lady… an angel." He stroked the top of her hand. He looked to their hands. "This is how things are mean to be."

Marie didn't answer yet, she sadly felt her heart sink, "Yes, father." She answered. She looked at their hands also and tried to smile, she couldn't, so she pulled a fake smile for her father.

Arthur kissed her cheek. "Now, I think you should go, it's getting late." he whispered to her and smiled as he gave her a hug. "You look the perfect lady." he said and stood, he walked to the large fireplace and there was a long thin box wrapped on top, he closed his fingers around it and walked towards her. "This is for you, my child. A gift for the ball that I was about to have soon."

Marie looked at him and tried hard to smile, thought it wasn't a gift she wanted, she was quiet happy with his hug. She stood and took the box slowly, then pulled the pink ribbon off gently, as if it were glass. Marie opened the box and looked inside, she removed the gift and flicked it open, a fan. Beautifully made. Eight butterflies of different sizes and many colours, on a night's sky background and a shining full moon.

"Aren't butterflies beautiful?" Arthur asked and smiled as he watched his daughter.

Marie nodded and felt the fan, she smiled at the gift and then hugged her father, "It's wonderful, father."

Arthur smiled at her and hugged her back, "I think of you as a butterfly." he said, looking down at her.

Marie was puzzled at this, "Why, Father? I don't understand."

"The butterfly is an amazing creature, slender bodies, mystifying looks, Very, very delicate and of course elegant. So, to you, my darling, you are like the butterfly." Arthur told his daughter, smiling as her cheeks turned red. "Now, to bed, my litter butterfly." he whispered in her ear and kissed her cheek.

Marie nodded and left her fathers hug, she held her fan close and kissed his cheek. She then turned and walked out of the room. She smiled, walking along the hall. She looked at the fan all of the time, until the lamp lights in the hall started to flicker. The flames danced, and it grew very cold.

Marie raised an eyebrow, "Father?" she called and turned, the drawing room was dark. Marie stared for a moment as the feeling of fear grew and her throat seemed to go dry and close. "Did your lamps blow out, father?" she called. She received no answer though.

Slowly and quietly, she stepped towards the drawing room. "Father?" she whispered, but saw two shining blue eyes looking at her. She froze. She almost dropped the fan to the ground, but backed up. Her eyes looked to the wall and she grabbed a candle holder on the table. She held it close.

The eyes in the darkness blinked, "A girl? I thought she was dead…" came a cold voice. A males voice, bloodcurdling. A chill ran up Marie's back. "Are you a maid? There aren't meant to be any maids out now" He hissed at the end of his words and a thump was heard in the room.

Marie didn't answer, her heart beat fast and she turned and ran towards her room.

The blue eyes narrowed on the her and he followed. He bounded after her, like this was a game. "Who are you?!" he yelled. He was already close to her, it hadn't taken long, he reached out, grabbing her hair and throwing her to the ground. He stood over her and snatched the fan and candle holder from her hands. "I asked you who you were." he hissed. Marie looked up to him, looking at his blue eyes that seemed to be sunken in to his head. She closed her eyes, it felt like she was freezing as he stood so cold. His skin was pale, very pale. "Answer!" he shouted at her and struck her across he face with the closed fan, he opened the fan and looked at it, "Maids don't have fans." he said and looked at the butterflies on the open fan. He threw the candle holder away.

Marie felt her cheek lightly, lost. She wanted to see where her father was.

The male looked down at her, looking at her hair and face "But, the girl died as a child, everyone knows that." he said, muttering. "She even has a grave, Marie has a grave."

Marie listened, "Marie has a grave?" she whispered and it felt like her heart froze in her body. Is this why her father never let her out? "She can't have…"

"Why not? Marie is dead… who are you, girl? If you work for Arthur Cassle, you had better find another job." he told her, hissing again. He closed his hand around her throat and then backed up, pulling her to her feet. He looked at her hair, "Pretty thing really…" he muttered. "And, dressed to well for a maid."

Marie stayed quiet for a moment, she was completely lost with what to say, "Marie has a grave, where?"

"On the grounds." he male replied. "Next to her mother."

"That can't be true." she whispered.

"We can go and look if you want." he said sarcastically. He stroked her cheek and she winced at how cold his touch was.

"I'm not allow out side…"

"Why not?" he asked and laughed slightly.

"I don't believe you. There can not be a grave for a girl that isn't dead." she spoke, trying to keep her voice from shaking.

"And, you speak lies." he told her and laughed in her face.

"I do not lie, Sir." Marie replied, turning her head as he laughed, "I am Marie Cassle…"

A/N:: Please let me know what you think so far for 'Masquerade Butterfly' Should I continue?