I couldn't fall asleep. It was impossible. Even though my body was ready to collapse with exhaustion, sleep refused to grace me. I lay awake, next to my beautiful Belle. Turing my head, I saw she had no trouble falling into sleep's open embrace. Her brown hair cascaded over her shoulders, her eyes fluttered behind her delicate eyelids. Her breath was slow and steady as it passed in and out of her pink lips.
I reached towards her adn ran a finger gently across the soft conturs of her face. She sighed in her sleep at my touch. I leaned over and planted a kiss on her forehead. I pulled back and smiled.
I was so lucky to have found her.
Softly, I tossed the covers off myself and got out of bed. I crept across the room and out of the dorr. Silently, I made my way to the library. Opening the grand doors, I was welcomed with a ghastly sight.
But -- no. Belle was-- she couldn't have --. But there she was.
Still on the library floor; her blood staining the Persian rugs.
I rushed over to her. I cradled her against me, crying.
I had just left her, safe and content in our room. But now --
Something glowed gently in my peripheral vision. Craning my neck, I saw that the glow orginated from behind a small couch-side table. As I watched, the glowing orb gravitated toward me. As it got closer, the light began to pulsate; quicker, faster. I was too shocked to do anything. The closer it got, the brighter it became until I was nearly blinded. As it was, I had to close my eyes against its brightness.
When I opened them again, I was lying in bed. My Belle was beside me, safe and unharmed. My eyes closed as I told myself It was only a dream. Only a dream.
I didn't notice the rose that had appeared on the table beside us. Or it's softly, pulsating glow.
That was last week. In the many days that had passed, dreams like those had kept my from peaceful sleep. It was getting to the point that I didn't want to wake up for fear of not knowing if I was really in fact, awake.
Belle was becoming concered. I would notice her looking at my strangely out of the corner of my eye and when she asked me about it, I told her I was fine.
That, of course, wasn't true.
I had to get away, I had to clear my head. It seemed every time my eyelids fell, I was acosted by horrifying dreams, terrifying nightmares. They became so vivid, so tangible, I could no longer distinguish between reality and dream. These dreams had driven me to extremes. One night, when I saw my Belle lying lifeless once again, I nearly took my own life. These had to stop.
Looking out the window, at the moon shinning full and bright, questions bounced around inside my head. Why was this happening? Who was behind it all? Was I going crazy? What is happening?
"Master?" a voice said.
I turned. Standing in the doorway, was Lumiere. A look of concern passed over his face as he continued, "Master, what are you doing up so late? Are you alright?"
"I'm fine, Lumiere," I said. "Just a little... restless."
"If there is anything you require...?"
Lumiere nodded, and walked back out the door. I turned once again to the window, gazing at the moon. Taking in a deep breath, I pushed the window open. Silently, I crawled out the window and leapt onto the castle grounds. I ran towards the forest that surrounded us. I needed answers, and I would find them one way or another.
No sooner than the darkness of the trees fully enveloped me, the world started shifting. I stood, frozen, as the trees, shrubs, and bushes began twisting and reforming before my eyes.
No, a voice whispered. Not a dream at all.
Just before a heavy blackness covered me, I knew. I knew who was behind it all.
"FAERITAYL!" I roared.