(Author: I have another story that I'm working on (not posted) that often refers to a story called "Mary Weather," and as there's not really a story call Mary Weather (to my knowledge) that at all fits what I say it's about in that other story, I decided I would make one. It's supposed to be a fairly short story that just gets the point across. Possibility of lengthening later. I only started this a few days ago (two or three at this point), so it's HIGHLY likely to change. Notice that it's sort of a combination between old-fashioned speech and modern day, so bear with me as I decide which I prefer. Please, please, please review on what you think!)

1

Once there was a young girl with hair as yellow as gold. Her name was Mary Weather, and she was very beautiful. As the only child of a wealthy family, she was given everything she ever desired. Without limitations, though, she had no reason for dreams and was always unhappy. She thought that the receiving of gifts was how others showed her their love for her, but she never felt it any other way. Her parents were much too busy and the servants had too much contempt for her.

Mary Weather had over a hundred servants all of her own, and to pass the hours that she would normally be left alone, she ordered them to amuse her. Her ideas were often cruel. She delighted in seeing the emotions of her servants that she could not create for herself. Her lack of emotions was only the more frustrating to her, and only made her do more to her servants.

During the day, she had the younger of her servants take her into town. They would stop at the bakery and buy some of the sweetest breads, fresh from the oven, and with a bag full of rolls, she would find an alleyway full of the homeless and stop to eat in front of them. She loved to see their reactions. The smaller ones reached for bread, the servant beside her keeping them away, and the older ones just turned away. Some of them cried. Over bread? She didn't understand the excitement. The bread wasn't that good, anyway, and she tossed it in the little furnaces the homeless looked to for heat.

As she grew, so did her interests. At six years old, her mother died of brain fever. Three years later, her father followed, leaving their vast fortune in the hands of their impulsive child. She isolated herself in the mansion on the hill, only a few of her servants ever leaving for the things they all needed to survive.

On her thirteenth birthday, someone came to the door of the mansion. It piqued her interest and she sent a servant to greet them. It was an old woman, hunched with age. Her skin was thin and wrinkled, her eyes dull and weak, and she leaned heavily on a cane. At her side was a young boy, Mary Weather's age, carrying a large box.

"Who are you," she asked, "to come to my home as if invited?"

"We were invited, I guarantee you," the woman said. "By your actions."

She looked over the boy, stone-faced and silent. "Is that a gift you're holding?"

"For you, my child," the woman said. She waved her hand to the boy. He carried it forward, but two servants stopped him. A maid took the box and carried it the last ten feet to the spoiled young girl on the throne. Yet another maid opened the box for her.

Inside was the most beautiful red dress she had ever seen. Made of silk with white stockings, it dazzled the young girl. Her own tailor, who had been hers since birth, had never expressed anything more than black on her in the last four years since her mother's death.

A third maid laid the dress out over the girl. She was struck, but could fathom no emotion beyond a simple smile. "Your gift is a great one, woman."

"Only the best for our dear young Mary Weather."

"Who are you?"

"Granny Beatrice and my grandson Benjamin."

They both bowed to the girl — as rich as a princess — but the girl turned up her nose. "The gift is sufficient, you may leave."

"We live in the town of Lilereth. Remember us, if you will."

Having no reason to, she promised she would and forgot dead away. Her mind was occupied with thoughts of the beautiful dress her maid was carrying up to her room. She would wear it tonight, she decided, in time for dinner. The old woman and young Benjamin were dismissed and Mary Weather went upstairs to be redressed.

"It's a beautiful dress," a maid agreed.

For speaking out of turn, she was tied to a stake in the yard all night like a dog.

The young girl went to eat her wonderful dinner alone, while the servants ate her scraps in the kitchen. All alone, she returned to her room in the tower. As her servants were all busy, she brushed her hair herself. One stroke, two, three…

…ninety-nine, one-hundred. She yawned now, the sun having set, and decided she would sleep in her new dress. She didn't want to take it off so soon. She crawled into her soft, lovely bed and blew out the candle for the night.

It was in the morning that she woke again, but something was different. Her hair felt strange against her cheek. Imagining that she was ill, she called for her maid. No one came. She called louder, but it was silent outside of her room.

She heard a strange noise — as if someone were laughing. It was a strangled little laugh and gave her the chills. She looked desperately for it, only to find it to be one of her dolls in her closet. It was a Jester doll, the one her mother had given her. It wasn't kept for sentimental reasons, but because she never went in her closet to find things so things were just dumped in there.

"Why do you laugh?" she shouted at him.

"What will you do, tie me to the stake as well?" He continued to laugh.

"No, worse! I'll have your head chopped off, you horrid doll!"

"You're one to speak, you little spoiled princess."

"What is that supposed to mean?"

She placed her hands on her hips, but the motion felt strange. Her elbows bent too far and seemingly in the wrong place. When she looked, she realized that she was a doll herself, dressed brilliantly in the red dress the old woman had given her. Her flaxen hair was not only brighter, it was false.

The girl tugged at it, knowing her real hair must be underneath, but she only ripped a small chunk out. At the sight of her beautiful locks in her hand, she screamed. Still, no one came to her.

The Jester laughed only harder. "That wasn't very wise, spoiled little princess. It won't grow back, you know. Someone will have to mend it."

"What have you done to me?!" she shrieked and cried.

"Myself? Nothing. I have done nothing to you but watch and wait for four years now since I was tossed in here. You're a horrid little girl, and deserve everything you get from this!"

Her anger at its peak — for no one had dared insult her like this before — she leapt from the side of the bed. It was farther and higher than she supposed, but her boneless rag legs bore no bones to break. She hit the ground with a thump. Sustaining no injury, she pushed herself back up.

"Now we shall see what you deserve!" she cried triumphantly.

The Jester howled a sharp laugh. "Oh, yes, that's right. Tear yourself apart, you silly spoiled girl! Look at yourself now — not so high and mighty with your stuffing all across the floor, are you?"

She looked down at her side. A seam had torn from the impact from the bed and her insides were showing out around her leg. Little Mary Weather, so unjustly treated, sat down to have a good cry about it. No tears came from her glass eyes and she only cried the harder. No one could ignore her when she cried. "What's happened to me?" she shrieked, but no one came to answer.

"They can't hear you, your servants. You're a doll now. You can only hear and speak to other dolls, or didn't you know?" the Jester cackled.

"You're a horrid toy!"

"No more horrid than you are — and far less, indeed! You're not one to be putting blame on people, no matter how much you think you are."

Mary Weather stumbled toward him, but without bones to support her and stuffing coming from her clothy flesh, she fell as if injured. Then she cried and sniffled all the harder as she was not even pitied by the Jester doll in her closet.

"How do I get back to being a little girl?" she sobbed to it.

"Asking me questions now, are you? Hm, yes, you're in quite a spot…," he pondered. "If I help you, you must promise to help me in return."

"How?"

"How? How do you think, you simpleton? I break your curse, you break mine, we're both human in the end. Then you must share your fortune with me."

"What?" she gasped. "My fortune? Why should I share my fortune with you?"

"Because I'm the one who has some idea of where to head."

"Then why haven't you already?"

"One minor detail — I've been forgotten. No one notices a discarded doll, but you're a doll that they haven't seen before, and in a brilliant red dress. No doubt the holder of the enchantment for you. You were set the moment you put that dress on."

Thinking she could outwit the Jester and be rid of the curse herself, she struggled out of the dress. The Jester only cackled louder at the naked little doll — the hardy princess of the mansion.

"If it were that easy, I would have been rid of my own curse for a long time now. I told you, we need to work together."

She shrieked with anger, as if deafening the clown would silence him, but he delighted in her torture as she delighted in torturing her servants. In the end, she had no other choice but to accept his help — and for he to accept hers.

As the day went on, Mary Weather was to lay on the bed until a servant noticed her and hopefully fixed her. She was no help if she had to limp the whole way — a doll's pace was far slower than a human's already! Then, they had to find that woman who put the curse on Mary Weather.

"Surely you remember the name!" the Jester cried. "It was only yesterday, after all."

"Not at all. Nor where she lives…"

"Do you know how to write, simpleton?"

"More than you, I'm sure."

They had her write a note, demanding her servants fix her new doll's leg. They slid it under the servant quarters' door and ran back up the stairs — quite a sight to see — to the bedchamber. When the servant came up to ask, she found the beautiful flaxen-haired doll and the strange Jester she'd never seen before. It was then that they realized that their young mistress was nowhere to be found.

The grounds were searched high and low, far and wide, but there was no sign of her save these two dolls the servants hadn't seen before. Mary Weather grew tired of not being waited on and, despite the beauty of the dress, wanted her servants to change her clothes and brush her hair.

"Must you keep giggling?" she snapped at the Jester.

"You've never minded before. I do it every night! I do it for you — my pity compels me. You're a sad little girl, not a friend in the world. Do you even know what a friend is or what they're for?"

"Who needs friends when you have money? Friends only want your money. They hope you die before they do so they can take it."

This turned him to an entirely higher laugh. "You fool! What money have you now? You don't even have thumbs."

"If I recall, you're asking for my money in exchange for this!"

He had no answer for this, but his laughing fit continued as if he couldn't control it. The situation she was in was too humorous for her.

Author:

PLEASE review on what you think so far!! Thank you all for reading!