Eden's Fall

Come, O gracious Melpomene, and tell the tale

of the destruction of hope. Sing of the night

that Cashlin, daughter of Cosette, consumed in

her vanity, brought suffering to one

that did no wrong. Innocence fallen to

pride, and through the ill will of the sprites,

malevolent in nature, the hope for all

was lost.

A cold December night it was,

and snow softly bombarded the streets of

Paris, encasing the ground in a cold

shell of powder. Deathly silent were the

alleyways and roads, and the night held the

promise of danger and great tragedy.

Gleaming through the curtain of white stood the

manor of a nobleman, bustling with

flustered servants in preparation for

the night's coming festivities: a ball,

for the coming of age of tantalizing

Cashlin, daughter of Cosette.

In a warm

lighted room sat the black-haired mistress,

primping and sprucing herself to perfection.

Her coal-colored tendrils curled over her

pale, sharp shoulders with a cool precision,

and her eyes the color of jade sparked like

a burning fire. A ribbon the shade of

her eyes was entangled in her locks, like

a snake writhing through branches in the woods,

slithering its way up and down and back

and forth, merciless in its perpetual

hunt for satisfaction, for warm blood.

Unfaltering in their movements, her dainty

hands applied rouge to the cheeks, liner to

the eyes, and color to the cheeks, cool and

concise in her mechanical motions.

Rivaling the greatest soldier's armor in

radiance and beauty was the gown draped

across the slender body of tantalizing

Cashlin. The fabric crept across curves,

tracing a silhouette lusted after

by foolish and blinded men in hopeless

pursuit of a deceitful beauty.

The emerald garment enhanced her

serpentine grace, and provoked temptation

in all who lay sight on her. Teardrop diamonds

slunk across her neck, glimmering like cold

fire in the soft candlelight.


in every way, snake-eyed Cashlin stood,

and made her way through the matrix of halls and

staircases that wound through the manor.

Emotionless was the young woman, eyes

hardened to joy, and love, and sorrow; lips

petrified in a mirthless smile, ready

to speak of elation or despair without

batting a flawless eyelash. There was only

her, and all else existed as an afterthought.

As tantalizing Cashlin advanced through

the passageways, sounds of jubilation

reached her ears. With each footstep the voices

of guests in their gaiety increased in

volume and the sweet sounds of music

caressed the ears of one immune to forms of

beauty besides herself. The clattering of

silverware drifted into audibility,

and as she turned a corner, Cashlin was

at the edge of a great ballroom, glowing with

the celestial light given off by hundreds

of candles nestled within glistening

chandeliers. The ceiling was the purest

white, and a golden trim separated it

from the beautifully adorned walls, home to

intricate paintings from the best of Paris,

to wonderfully woven patterns from artists

as far away as India and China.

Servants bustled around the guests, careful

not to disturb a gloating war general

or a mistress attempting to entice

a young duke. Women in elaborate gowns

flowed from one end of the room to the other,

elegant masses of silk and jewels,

beautiful in their ignorance of what

tragedy the night held in store for all

that remained pure and benevolent.

The men scoured the room, hopeful that the night

would bring to them wealth and love in the form

of a beautiful woman. Like a majestic

tiger will stealthily prowl, possessed by

a single desire to attain its prey,

silently stalking and driven by an

insatiable thirst-yet undeniably

enticing with its muscular, powerful

body, so did the men glide about the

marble floor searching for proper suitors.

Undetected among the beauty were

the sprites, stewards of discord, gleefully

awaiting an opportunity to

spread their mischief. Flittering betwixt

the lords and ladies were the winged cretins,

pinching and prodding as they flew, leaving

behind them many an offended woman and

befuddled man, often rubbing his flushed

cheek and offered no explanation. The

sprites' skin was a pale blue, and they were clothed

in simple garments of white. If their small

wings were visible to the patrons, they

would have shimmered, echoing the shades of

the dresses that floated through the room.

Halted in their disruption were the sprites

when tantalizing Cashlin stepped into

the room. All eyes moved to her enticing

figure, following each motion that brought

her further across the floor. Like a drop

of blood in the swirling depths of the ocean

will lure sharks from miles away, driven

by a voracious hunger for flesh, their

fear-instilling figure cutting through waves,

so did Cashlin coax the best men of Paris.

With a smile that did not reach her eyes,

Cashlin began her dangerous game.

Well aware of her resplendent beauty

and consumed with a malicious intent

to use her suitors as mere entertainment,

she slithered across the hard floor, honing

in on her victims with an unrelenting

viciousness, masked with a façade of


A young lord by the name of

Enjolras was the first to approach her,

and the sprites gathered in curiosity,

sensing in the air an opportunity

to work their mischief. The man ventured

towards her, his confident composure ebbing

with each quick step. Meeting the serpentine

beauty at the middle of the floor, he spoke:

"Mademoiselle, allow me to introduce

myself. I am Enjolras, lord of Marseille,

and I consider myself honored to be

in the presence of a beautiful woman

such as yourself. Word of your radiance

has spread through the land, consuming all it

touches with fantasies, but I tell you,

no thought conjured by man shall ever

do justice to your divine perfection.

Now that I have seen your face, and looked into

your captivating eyes, I believe my life

to be complete. I may be subject to

plagues and horrors unknown by man, yet

the knowledge of something so pure and

magnificent existing outside of

heaven will surely rescue me from strife.

Incomparable to any element of

our human world is your beauty.

Glorious mademoiselle, would it serve

you well to honor me with a dance?"

While the music continued to waltz through

the air, the guests seemed to have formed a ring

circling round the pair, holding their breath

in anticipation. Snake-eyed Cashlin's

expression remained frozen in concrete

as the poor man spoke, scrutinizing him

with each word. Her pale, flawless skin seemed

to glow under the candlelight, and her eyes

were immune to emotion. She replied:

"Monsieur, your flattery is acknowledged,

however, it is much in vain. Words are

only words." Enjolras, the benevolent,

nervously shifted under her piercing gaze;

his discomfort brought her brought her

nothing but a sadistic amusement.

Her vanity fed off his compliments.

"How may I prove to you my devotion?"

He questioned, desperate to show his sincerity.

She pretended to ponder his question

for a moment, and then gave him an answer

that would set the events of the evening

spinning into the catastrophic finale.

"I do not ask for you to prove your words,

I merely suggest that you lack the adequate

attributes that would enable you to do so.

If my beauty is as immeasurable

as you claim, then why would you, Monsieur

consider yourself sufficient enough for me?"

Confounded the man stood, face flushed with

humiliation and bewilderment.

Turning, he fled into the cluster of dresses

and him himself among the masses.

Amused whispers circulated through the

guests, and above them all, watching from between

banisters of the grand staircase, sat Bianca,

the younger sister to tantalizing Cashlin.

Doomed to estrangement from bastard birth,

pure-hearted Bianca had been sentenced

to isolation during the ball, in order to

prevent an embarrassing situation.

Such treatment was the norm for the girl,

and she had long before learned how to amuse

herself within her isolation. Hidden

from judgmental eyes of the nobles she lay,

snow-colored hair strewn behind her casually.

She gazed longingly at the women in their

beautiful gowns, and no matter how hard

she tried, her eyes always were drawn back to

the figure of her sister, glorious and snake-like

in her exquisiteness. No figure

in the room equaled the grace Cashlin emitted.

From above, it seemed as though she were an

exotic snake, winding through the clusters

of women and men, body undulating

seductively, yet deceptive in its beauty;

if tempted, it would strike, sinking deadly

fangs into flesh, injecting a venom

that would slowly consume the victim with

unrelenting vigor.

Although unknown to her,

young Bianca watched the antics of the

hidden sprites, amused. She observed a nervous

and handsome young lord spill punch on the arm

of a woman he was attempting to court,

a second man trip, and subsequently

bring the lady he danced with to the floor,

and yet a third vomit rather ungracefully

onto the floor in front of a group of

girls he had been entertaining with

war stories. Despite such happenings

being attributed to bad luck, the

sprites, henchmen of discord, made themselves very

present through these very actions.

Turning her gaze away from the misfortune

of the guests, Bianca looked again to

her sister. Many young men from all over

France, from Marseille, to Toulouse, to Avignon

approached Cashlin, each desiring the same

thing, and each turned away just as coldly

as the one before. Men offered riches,

power, a life of luxury, land, and countless

other material objects, but nothing

could woo the serpentine woman with

a heart of stone. Her affection belonged

exclusively to herself; in her cold,

emerald eyes, she was perfection,

and was rivaled by nobody. The rejection

of the suitors was a game to her, emotions

were absent. Men, blinded by her radiance

existed as pure amusement for the ruthless

viper, ensnared in a ruthless round of

cat and mouse. However, the first of the

suitors, benevolent Enjolras, seemed

to be unable to resist the attractions

of her sister. Countless times through the night

he attempted to appeal to the stone-

hearted woman, and countless times he was sent

away with a cold insult and mirthless laughter.

Bianca's eyes darted between the dejected

men and the great windows that adorned the

walls. As the night slowly progressed, the snow

outside accumulated, bombarding

the glass with muted thuds. Above the music

and happy twittering of the lords and

ladies, the wind whistled a haunting

chorus that haunted those who paused to

listen. Miniscule snowflakes were bound

together in powerful gusts, teeming through

the black December night. Like a graceful

dancer will spin through the air, contorting

her body, matching the arpeggios

and crescendos and trills that the music

enunciates, so did the snow warp itself

to the will of the wind. As she stared,

hypnotized by the chaotic patterns

the brutal winter created, a disturbance

below caught her eye. Benevolent

Enjolras has once again approached her

sister, and a hush rippled through the guests,

eager to hear the outcome of what would be

the final encounter between the two.

However, the wave of silence came too late,

and in an inexplicable rage, the poor man

threw a crystalline glass of red wine to the

floor and stormed to the great doors that opened

to a wintery desolation. Flurries of

the white precipitation waltzed into

the hall with a violent fury, assaulting

the bare necks and shoulders of the women

with frenetic urgency. The ladies

shrieked and ran for cover, the men followed

helplessly, and the sprites exuberantly

swarmed through the chaos, cackling their shrill

laughter. Yet, in all the bedlam, tantalizing

Cashlin stood, cold heart immune to the freezing

December air. With blank eyes and a smooth

face, she stared at the shattered crystal at

her feet. Even after the servants had

rushed to close the enormous doors, the

woman remained unflinching, watching the

wine, dark and red as blood, trickle across

the white marble floor, decorated with

shards of glass. A glimpse of what would become

of the small bastard, unnoticed upstairs,

was the destruction of the pure floor,

stained with wine. Like how a ravenous wolf

will stalk a young lamb, ignorant in its

juvenile bliss, and sink its unforgiving

teeth into soft flesh, pouring crimson blood

onto soft untouched wool, tinting it with

sin, blossoming red from the wound until

the diminutive form is devoid of life,

so did the red wine trickle across the floor.

Cautiously, the men and women made their

way back into the great room, nervously

laughing off their foolish reactions,

reassuring themselves with the sheepish

expressions of those around them. The sprites

fluttered gleefully, mischievous grins

in place, prepared to reinstate their

tomfoolery at the blink of an eye.

As the violinist once again struck

his bow against the strings, sending a shrill,

melancholy song soaring through the air,

a flash of white was spotted by a sprite.

Young Bianca he spotted, lying hidden

behind intricately carved banisters,

clothed in a white dress purer than the snow

that had assaulted the ballroom.

With eyes glittering in anticipation,

he soared through the slowly warming air,

intent on catapulting the lords and

ladies back into their frantic states.

A slow and deliberate flourish he

gave, and from behind the small girl fell a

large and exquisite lamp, painted with

intricate depictions of Adam and Eve

in their sacred Garden. Shards of glass

skittered across the hard floor, and a large

piece of debris slid across the hand of

Bianca, slicing it open with one

smooth, swift motion. Emitting a startled

gasp of pain, she grasped her hand and glanced

at the glass that had cut her, but quickly

looked away, faced with a disturbingly

detailed image of a serpent, offering

the Forbidden fruit to a soon-to-be

condemned Adam and Eve. The crack of glass

shattering climbed above the sweet music of

the violins and casual conversation,

a sharp and damning trill that echoed from

wall to beautiful wall. Slowly and

deliberately, snake-eyed Cashlin turned

from the wine, and stared unflinchingly at

the wounded girl at the top of the stairs.

Under the piercing gaze trembled Bianca,

frozen by the cool glare, dripping drops

of blood into an expanding puddle

on the floor. Others too turned their eyes

towards the girl in white, questioning and curious.

Slowly, Cashlin's lips unfolded, morphing

into a smile void of mirth or joy,

a lifeless smirk of stone and ice. Motioning

to her bastard sister with a single

pale and perfect finger, she beckoned

her, and as if in a trance, she came, drawing

herself from the floor and staggered forward,

one heavy foot after the other, drawing

her hypnotically towards her own imminent

demise. Painstaking was her trek down the

grandiose staircase, with the eyes of all

focused only on Bianca. She trailed

behind her a shining path of blood,

which steadily dripped from the gash on her

hand, each drop hitting the floor with a

resounding splash that echoed across the room.

After what seemed to have been an eternity,

her cold foot slapped down upon the hard marble.

She faced her legitimate sister, soft

blue eyes assaulted by her sister's

reptilian glare.

The sprites hovered in the air, taking delight

in the tension that suffocated the room.

Faithfully they remained with the serpentine

beauty, eager to provoke tragedy.

"What are you doing here, enculé?

Are you not supposed to be away from

here? Instead, your presence causes only

embarrassment, for both you and I."

As Cashlin's lips moved, the sprites acted,

filling the woman with spite and anger,

reminding her of the man who insulted

her beauty. And then, blinded by their

provocations, consumed with vanity,

she uttered the words that were the

beginning to the catastrophic finale,

fated from the moment Enjolras spoke

in his blind desire.

"Fetch your cloak, girl, and find the man who

attempted to prove me a fool, who thought

he could undermine my beauty and take

me as his own. Bring him back to me, the

fool, and tell him I wish to…express my

regret for his treatment. He will not make

me the idiot in my own home, and he will

pay for his insubordinations with

his pride."

Whispers cascaded across the great

room as tantalizing Cashlin closed

her lips, staring expectantly at the

petrified girl that stood before her.

Almost, Bianca opened her mouth to

refuse, to attempt to gain any amount

of forgiveness. Instead, she stole a glance

towards the panes of glass that towered above

them, seeing only the perpetual

gusts of snow that hurled themselves against

the windows. Resistance, she knew, was

fruitless, and she reluctantly nodded,

backing away towards the dark hallway,

in search of a cloak that would do little

to shield her from the imminent fate she

would be faced with in the wintry depths.

As she plodded down the hall, the warmth of

the fires and candles behind her faded

away, and the voices of the guests resuming

their festivities shrunk away from view,

disappearing into just a pinpoint

of hope remaining at the end of an

ever growing tunnel. Like a small creature,

a rabbit, will flee from predator in

the confines of an underground burrow,

trembling in fear, shrinking in upon itself

in a futile attempt to save itself,

and avoiding the patch of light that shines

in upon it, from the warm sun, revealing

its sanctuary to the bloodthirsty

hunter, so did the light from the great hall

shine upon the back of Bianca, who,

never looking, felt the unforgiving

gaze of the damning serpent who stood,

clothed in emerald green, watching to see

her will done.

After what might have been an eternity,

the pure-hearted Bianca reached a closet

with the cloaks of servants, and reached grabbing

the first her pale fingers touched. Her bleeding

palm had seemed numbed before, fear of her sister

overwhelming bodily pains, but now,

in isolation, the wound throbbed to the

beat of her heart, slowly pulsating,

staining the young girl's pure skin with crimson

blood. Slowly Bianca tore a piece of

old fabric from a tattered cloak, and

clumsily bandaged her wounded hand.

Tying the final knot, she turned and faced

the sturdy door that loomed before her,

hesitating only a second before

prying open the barrier between

the secure manor and the treacherous

French wasteland that winter manifested.

Bianca set her foot down upon soft

snow, and was greeted with the callous

assault of the wind. It swarmed around her

small body, drawing all sensations of

warmth away with its violent touch. Wincing

in surprise, Bianca hesitated,

letting drifts of wind into the manor,

and providing a small escape for the

mischievous sprites, who followed the girl

out into the cold, delightedly soaring

through the unforgiving cold.

Pure-hearted Bianca braced herself and

stepped forward, finding a strange solace in

the high shrieks of the wind; it seemed as though

the ethereal noises carried within

themselves whispers of comfort and hope,

and she welcomed them willingly,

embracing them as her only condoler.

The manor was perched upon a small, yet

steep hill, bordered at the bottom by the

powerful Seine. Bianca could hear

the careening waters rushing away

with reckless abandon over the screaming

of the wind, and together they merged,

a symphony of nature's violent

tendencies brought together in a

truculent crescendo that overwhelmed

all other noise. Tentatively she walked,

sinking into the accumulated

snow that covered all paths. Nowhere in sight

was the lord Enjolras, but the sprites played

with the girl, creating deceitful shapes

that ran through the air, dissipating just

as abruptly as they had appeared,

a phantasmagoria of powdery

figures. Bewildered, and chilled to the bone

was pure-hearted Bianca as she dashed

after the specters, fruitless attempts

awarded with nothing but a prolonged

exposure to the harsh weather. The sprites

gleefully watched her bound clumsily across

the snow, guiding her closer and closer

towards the icy banks of the black waters.

The bloody bandage that once covered her

wounded hand was torn off in her efforts,

yet it remained unnoticed; the frostbitten

air stung lips and face and ears with a cruelty

never before felt, whipping white hair against

flawless skin and creating red windburn

across pale cheeks.

Bianca lifted her foot and raised her head

into the storm, looking helplessly for

any form of salvation, yet unknowingly

stumbling forward into what would be

her demise. The haunting clash of the wind

was drowned by the waters of the Seine

as she neared the icy banks, and the sounds

of the thundering, frothy waves overwhelmed

her senses, driving her further into a

frenetic desperation. Ice stung her eyes,

furious wind battered her body with

unforgiving power, scarlet blood poured

from her tattered hand, and yet she blindly

and recklessly proceeded, ignorant

of the river, now dangerously close.

The sprites surrounded her, circling the girl

in exultation, sneers plastered on their

blue faces, adding their cackles to the

orchestra of the storm, piccolos and

sopranos and violins accompanying

the bass and the cellos and brass

provided by the cascading river.

Tears flooded down pure-hearted Bianca's

face, and she let out a scream of anguish

that was swiftly carried away with the wind.

Abandoning wit, she plunged forward,

driving herself into the onyx waters.

At once was the wailing wind silenced,

smothered by the powerful Seine, Bianca's

icy coffin. The crashing of waves above

were muffled, and the resounding thud of

her heartbeat echoed in her ears. She

floated in shock, let her body be tossed

helplessly in the current, quickly

becoming disoriented as she was

carried through the waters. And then, as

if awaking from a nightmare, she lurched

forward, frantically searching for the surface

of the water. Numb fingers scratched the

river helplessly, with a violent urgency,

yet nothing was grasped, only thin streams of

bubbles drifted away. She was a ragdoll,

forced to submit to the rough waves that

whipped her to and fro, and after what seemed

an eternity of futile struggling, she gave up.

The darkness overwhelmed Bianca, and

she succumbed to eerie plight, as ghastly

and secluded as she had been in life.

Pulled along with the flow of the river was

her battered body, pure hair and white dress

flowing in a melancholy rhythm.

Slowly, she descended into the depths

of the Seine, expelling what was left

of her breath into the waters. She took

solace in the deafening silence that

consumed her, and closed her shimmering eyes

for the last time, welcoming the blanket

of darkness that engulfed her.