• Alexandra Claus

Short & Sweet

Rapunzel traced the old cracks in the ceiling for the fifth time that morning, imagining they were roads and rivers on the map of a faraway kingdom. Someplace with far more excitement than the small tower she had known as home for the past ten years.

As she lay sprawled across her bed, her ears picked up a new sound amid the humdrum orchestra of bird calls and squirrel chitters.

Hoofbeats.

She raced for the window and looked out. Someone was racing down the distant path on horseback, the gleam of metal bright. A knight had finally come to rescue her!

She dashed water on her face and brushed the wrinkles from her faded gown as the hoofbeats grew steadily louder, then stopped at the base of the tower.

There was a clanking of armor before the knight called out in a clear voice, “Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair! I have come to wrest you away from this lonely place!”

Her last minute preening ceased. She edged out the window and peered down at the valiant knight. “Good sir, there may be a slight issue. I’m terribly sorry, but I got bored with all the waiting and gave myself a pixie cut.”

She brushed her fingers self-consciously through the short, uneven ends. It hadn’t been the most flattering haircut but the knight was kind enough not to say anything of it.

He smiled up at her, his shrug barely perceptible under the weight of his pauldrons. “I suppose I ought to start looking for a ladder.”

This piece of flash fiction was written for a Grace Writers' prompt, "Hair-cutting maniacs," inspired by the growing number of home haircuts (both good and bad) during the quarantine. I hope this story provides a few moments of light and laughter amid all of the worries and unknowns. <3

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