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Moira wove every spell she knew to counter the dark magic, but the black threads knotted around her wrist, pulsing red hot. She grasped her knife, hoping to use the blade to cut at the spell but a wave of light-headedness overwhelmed her as the magic worked its way further up her arm. Moira’s vision blurred and she sank to the ground. Through teary eyes she saw a figure enter her small cottage and bend down to inspect her arm. Ulrich had returned to her. Her husband rolled up his sleeve and glowered at her.

“We finally have our wedding bands, wife.” He spat. Just as Moira’s vision darkened, she saw the mass of black thread wound about Ulrich’s wrist.

Moira struggled to open her eyes. A blinding pain pulsed in her temple and something warm and sticky ran down her cheek. She tried to lift her arm to wipe her face only to discover her hands were bound to the cold stone beneath her. Moira pried her eyes open far enough to see that she was in a dark stone room. The only light illuminating the dim cell came from 4 tallow candles placed at each corner of the stone table on which she lay.

Moira studied her cell, searching for an exit or at least a thread of magic she could work to her advantage when a flash of light from across the room caught her eye. She glanced to her right, expecting to find a small window, but was shocked to discover that a large ornate mirror reflected the light from the candles. While the rest of the cell was built from rough- hewn stone, the mirror was magnificent, rimmed in a mosaic of colored glass. 

Moira stared at her reflection, golden hair and blood splayed across the stone altar, blue eyes wide with shock and fear. She could see a fine web of interwoven threads across the mirror’s surface. This magic was silver, almost translucent, like the fragile work of a spider. Moira could tell at first glance the mirror was the work of old magic, done long ago by a mage untainted. Unlike the queen’s spells, these were untouched by the evils of greed, power, or envy.

The End

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