This week, the prompt is:
Dive into the darker side of story telling and create your own fairytale where a step-mother causes trouble for the main character.
After a messy divorce, Dmitri Holden figured love had found him again when he met Leila Bentley. She seemed to know everything he wanted and knew just the right things to say to him. His feelings for her grew fast. Meeting each other regularly, they felt their attraction was growing into more than that, so they decided the next step should be to move in together.
He moved across the country to be with her, he knew there was not a nasty bone in her body. He would have seen it; he could spot things like that.
Dmitri and his children moved in and his happiness grew, as did that of his son and daughter. His daughter, Isabel, made a friend in Leila’s daughter, Cassandra. They stayed up at nights talking, sharing stories whilst his son, Jared, enjoyed the comfort of his room.
Dmitri cooked Leila her favourite meal, Spaghetti Bolognese made with real herbs and simmered for five hours, perfectly shredded pasta and finely grated cheese. The meal was exquisite and the only problem with it being only enough for one plate of food each. Life was definitely good.
Several weeks later, Dmitri made Leila Spaghetti Bolognese again for the anniversary of them moving in together. She looked at it and asked, “What is this?” He looked at her and smiled saying, “it is the meal we had when we moved in together, it is one of your favourites, simmered for four to five hours”. She pushed the plate away glaring at him and shouting “I can’t stand it, I have never liked it. You know that! Can’t you do anything right?” Dmitri apologised to her, picked up the plate and left, wondering how he could have thought it was her favourite. He searched his memories trying to figure out how he could be mistaken.
Dmitri asks Leila for her favourite meal, as he wants to make it for her. He writes down as she tells him. Steak and thick chips with brown sauce, medium to well done, definitely not rare. He writes it all down, as he does not want to make the mistake again. The following week he buys all the ingredients and makes a lovely meal for her. She glares at him asking “what the hell this is” that he had has created; this “abomination on a plate”. He tells her it is what she asked for, and she denies asking for it. Saying she only mentioned in passing it was something she ate previously.
The children fare no better. Cassandra’s sister, Meredith, is about to be homeless and calls her mother, crying. Leila screams at her to stop crying and hangs up. Isabel sits with Dmitri on the sofa in the living room, and Leila asks what she is doing there when it is supposed to be their time together. Isabel runs crying whilst Leila stands there pleased with herself and not allowing her Dmitri out by standing in the doorway yelling at him for spending time with his stupid kids.
Jared creeps through the house in the morning so he does not wake anyone and Leila charges from her room and screams at him for being too loud, for stomping. Dmitri stands in her way and tells her to back down or they are leaving, and she asks where they would go as they know no-one in this area of the country.
He thinks of doing the only thing he can … send his children away to protect them from this monster …