It is snowing and very cold, but I do not feel it. On such a day was I born, created by my mother’s desire. Flesh of snow, hair of ebony, her blood to give me life. I grew in shelter and splendor, a winter rose quickly come full-bloom; the passing of the years reflected in my mother’s mirror.
My mother loved all things beautiful and her beauty most of all. Often, I went up the snowy mountain to pick rare frozen flowers, taking with me only her Hunter; he, who sought to please her as well as I. The flowers I showered upon her did not melt at her touch, but remained cold in her icy-fastness. Hunter knelt and gazed up, shivering at the touch of her hand when she deigned to pet him as I entwined the petaled gems into her curls.
Ebony hair, red lips, white skin. “Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is fairest of us all,” my mother would sing and smile her secret smile for we were as similar as twins. Yet, as I waxed, my mother waned and she stopped singing. Combing my hair into dark waves she crooned instead, “Soon, my heart, soon,” and stroked the glowing jeweled box that lay next to her mirror. Each day, as my mother looked older, the box grew brighter.
It was upon the winter mountain that Hunter touched my lips for the first time, seeking in me what my mother would not give him. I started at his warmth against my snowy skin. He kissed me again and caught me in a strong embrace. We did not stop till he was shivering. Laughing, we ran into the wood. I did not bring my mother flowers that day, nor did Hunter sit at her feet.
“Soon, my heart, soon,” she said.
Slow flakes fell the day we went to pick flowers, my Hunter and I. In his hand, he carried my mother’s jeweled box.
He smiled sadly. “This is my punishment for wanting, so it shall always be. Here is where you were made. Here is where you will live again.”
My feet rooted to the ground; I could not run. Hunter laid me gently on the snow and parted my dress, heedless of my plea. His warmth pierced me while his knife played in my belly. Reverently, he placed my bloody, beating heart into the jeweled box.
In the snow lay a patch of rare frozen flowers. I do not feel the cold.