Fairy Tale Friday – The Bitter Woods – Chapter 9

The Bitter Woods – A Vengeance Fantasia

by Montserrat Mendez

all rights reserved

INT. CHATEAU CHARMING/BEDFORD’S CHAMBER — NIGHT

Bedford’s cold, blue body on a bed. His neck wound has been wrapped in Blue Satin. He is being dressed by Five of the Seven Maidens. Snow White watches on, holding the pit of her stomach, does it hurt? Like the pain of birth? The pain is so raw it inhabits her completely. She can’t take it. She escapes the room, closing the door behind her. In the –

HALLWAY –

She leans against a wall for strength. The sixth Maiden approaches her.

SEXTA
Your highness.

SNOW WHITE
Has the king returned?

SEXTA
He is on his way.

Snow lets out an animalistic growl.

SNOW WHITE
This is no longer a fancy of men, call your sisters. You are going on a hunt.

SEXTA
Yes your highness.

SNOW WHITE
Do not fail me.

OFF of SEXTA, with a glint of danger in her eyes she walks into Bedford’s Room. Closing the door she gives us one last look of danger.

INT. THE THRONE ROOM — CONTINUOUS

The Guards hold Michael and The Stepmother. Glassister walks up to his mother. Snow White pushes him away and walking up to her prisoners slaps them one after the other. The King and the Hunter hang back, they know better.

SNOW WHITE
You have cost me a son.

Snow white Slaps the Stepmother again.

STEPMOTHER
Your highness.

SNOW WHITE
And you broke my laws.
(to Glassister)
Take them away.

GLASSISTER
Are they not to be executed?

SNOW WHITE
When I last saw you, you were not in command of this kingdom.

Glassister nods to the guards, and leads them towards the Dungeon. The guards drag the two women violently away.

KING CHARMING
I’m sorry, I know how much you loved him.

SNOW WHITE
He was my favored.

KING CHARMING
He had the greatest capacity for good. If he had only chosen the path more often.

SNOW WHITE
Shut up.

INT. DUNGEON CELLS — CONTINUOUS

Michael and Stepmother are flung into THE DUNGEON. Michael sits on a COT, crying in the darkness.

STEPMOTHER
Now, now, stop that.

The WITCH ENTERS, her LANTERN brings much needed light.

THE WITCH
Back again.

MICHAEL
Who are you?

THE WITCH
I am the wall that stands between you and death.

STEPMOTHER
To what end?

THE WITCH
For the sport of the queen. Follow me, we’ll begin with the basic techniques.

INT. CABIN/CAVE — LATER

A LOUD CRUNCH! A SCREAM! As The HUNTRESS in one swift motion PULLS Alex’s Leg TAUT. Cinderella begins to wrap her leg with strips of canvas cloth.

ALEX
(through pain)
What do you think will become of Mother and Michael?

Cinderella does not answer.

THE HUNTRESS
Let me get this straight. You lived as boys.

CINDERELLA
They had no choice. Any female child missing a parent would placed under the queen’s protection.

THE HUNTRESS
Very few survive that fate, those who do are almost in-human. Yet you fight like one of them. How is that possible?

CINDERELLA
I would ask the same of you…
(beat)
It was my father. You?

THE HUNTRESS
A spirit of the woods teaches me.

CINDERELLA
The same spirit that came here.

The Huntress eyes widen.

CINDERELLA
I have a suspicion that your spirit and my fairy godmother are one in the same. How does all this tie together I wonder?

She looks at the Huntress. For the first time Cinderella does not trust her.

THE HUNTRESS
I have no idea.

ALEX
What happened that night?

CLOSE on CINDERELLA — into her eyes and we find ourselves, in a —

FLASHBACK!

Actually a fast progression of them. First. We see the Fairy Godmother appear to the dirty and disheveled Cinderella.

Then, the spirit guides her to a cemetery, and she digs, until she comes upon shards of glass. In the moonlight, the WITCH transforms them into GLASS SLIPPERS.

Then, Cinderella breaks into the STEPMOTHER’S SHOPPE. The WITCHS’ SPIRIT picks out a DRESS.

After which we see her arrival at the BALL. Glassister walks up to her in the GARDEN and brings her in. They DANCE. Everyone enjoys the ball.

Glassister whisks Cinderella away, just as in the fairy tale, to a more secluded part of the castle. A Library. Bedford shadows them.

INT. LIBRARY — CONTINUOUS

Glassister gives her a glass of wine. She drinks it. She spies, on a little table, A STRANGE POWDER, but then Glassister turns her aside and kisses her. Cinderella’s extremely dizzy, Glassister pushes her down onto a long, wooden table. She pushes him away. He slaps her. Then choking her, he forces himself on her. She SCREAMS in pain.

BEDFORD ENTERS. Everything becomes a slow haze. Her P.O.V. of Bedford and Glassister talking. Arguing? The TWO brothers walk over to her. BEDFORD Smiles. Her savior. But then he does something un-savior like. He Kisses her as Glassister begins to undress her.

CINDERELLA
NO!

The DOOR OPENS. It is THE KING! BELLS RING, it is MIDNIGHT. The LOUD JOLT awakens CINDERELLA. She dashes past the KING. The two Princes follow, but King Charming stands in their way. Then we see her. Running into THE BITTER WOODS.

RESUME SCENE.

CINDERELLA
We must rescue them.

THE HUNTRESS
No!

ALEX
No?

THE HUNTRESS
We did well today but you killed her son, her rage will be powerful. Combining our talents would make us mighty.

ALEX
What are you suggesting?

THE HUNTRESS
Winter clouds roam overhead. Fereweigh soon will slow, as will their search. We can wait them out till spring.

ALEX
What about mother and sister?

THE HUNTRESS
They will not be opened to disaster until we are found.

ALEX
You say that with too much confidence.

THE HUNTRESS
In the meanwhile we will need to find you a mighty weapon.

CINDERELLA
I have my father’s sword and his courage.

THE HUNTRESS
No doubt you will call upon them. But to save your family you will have to get through many foes.

INSERT: visual images of the oncoming foes, THE GUARDS, GLASSISTER, THE HUNTER, AND THEN THE CAMERA RESTS ON SEXTA, THE SIXTH MAIDEN and we seamlessly find her —

EXT. A ROAD LEADING AWAY FROM CHATEAU CHARMING — EVENING

The setting sun, illuminates the way, as SEXTA spreads petals of different colored flowers on the ground.

PULL BACK to reveal the other six maidens; upon their shoulders a GLASS COFFIN carrying Bedford’s body. Behind the coffin the procession of the royal family and her highest ranking staff. As we follow the funeral procession we hear…

THE HUNTRESS
You will need magic against the maidens, for their weapons are the very speed of darkness. It is the only chance you have if you’re going to come upon the queen. But such objects come by rarely and it must be gifted to you by a being of magic.

CINDERELLA
Can you make a weapon of these?

She holds out the GLASS SLIPPERS to the Huntress. The huntress grabs them. The design on the glass changes when she touches them. She looks at Cinderella with a sly smile.

Through the window SNOW begins to FALL and Time MOVES ON.

INT. DUNGEON CELLS — WEEKS LATER

THE WITCH
The young one shows great promise.

SNOW WHITE
Really?

THE WITCH
She should be spared her fate. She is a pure heart.

SNOW WHITE
No.

THE WITCH
She is merely a stepsister. The blood of your sons killer does not run in her veins. And like you…

SNOW WHITE
Like me?

THE WITCH
She was never given a choice.

SNOW WHITE
I will consider it when the proper time comes.

Snow white walks away.

THE WITCH
Come out ladies. She is quite gone.

STEPMOTHER
You have attempted to save my daughters life. I thank you.

MICHAEL
She is not as we have been led to believe.

THE WITCH
I’m afraid I’m somewhat to blame for that. The rest of the blame rests on the world, they choose their heroes and erase their flaws making enemies out of the misunderstood. It will happen to you, I can see it in your future.

She loses track of her thoughts.

THE WITCH
Still as long as I breathe I can make amends for my sins. Time is the great enemy but, given proper cause, it can be your friend.

She smiles in their direction.

THE WITCH
I have learned that in my captivity. Now grab your weapons for this is your time.

Stepmother and Michael face each other off in practice. And we flow into —

EXT. THE CABIN/CAVE — DAY

Snow covers everything.

ANGLE ON CINDERELLA AND THE HUNTRESS FIGHTING!

we are nearing the end of a skirmish. It is one in which Cinderella is thrown clear across the field of snow. Rudolfo runs to her rescue. The Huntress stands above her.

THE HUNTRESS
I think he likes you.

CINDERELLA
And I like him.

She playfully pats Rudolfo. He licks her face.

THE HUNTRESS
Let’s go.

ON THE PORCH, Alex’s smile is melancholy at best. Cinderella sees it, and so she stands and…

CINDERELLA
All right. En Guarde!

And they begin to fight again.

DISSOLVE TO:

EXT. THE EDGE OF THE BITTER WOODS — CONTINUOUS

The seven maidens/stealthy assassins of the Queen dressed in WHITE flowing robes enter THE BITTER WOODS. SNOW falls and soon the entire screen is covered in snowflake white.

CUT TO:

ANGLE ON TWO HORSES

Ridden by The Hunter and Glassister. THE CAMERA tilts downward as the horses pass. IN THE SNOW Eyes open and the Seven Maidens of the Queen rise from the snow. All take light bows and shoot arrows into the woods above and rise, The Hunter turns. All he is sees falling snow, which soon covers the screen.

Slowly from the frost spring buds break through the ice.

A boot steps on the bud.

ANGLE ON ALEX

PICKING UP KINDLING. Her hair has grown longer. She looks out the frosted forest and sees Cinderella and The Huntress moving simultaneously in strange yet beautiful dance like movements. The snow falls covering all in white and we —

DISSOLVE TO:

MICHAEL

who trains with the witch.

IN THE DUNGEONS

Her hair has gotten considerably longer too. She has improved much as a fighter. Her mother however has not, as the witch knocks her to the ground and holds a sword to her neck.

THE WITCH
Your mother is going to die.

MICHAEL
Not if I’m there to protect her.

With this MICHAEL throws her sword and shatters the WITCHS’ SWORDS to pieces.

THE WITCH
She faints Every time she sees blood.

STEPMOTHER
Only when it is mine own.

MICHAEL
I will make certain it is never spilled.

A VOICE only the WITCH can hear CALLS!

THE WITCH
(responds.)
Yes, yes, the pieces are set here as well.

She turns around and leaves. The witch enters her —

DUNGEON QUARTERS — Closes the door, raises her arms, lights the candles. Sits on the Unicorn Rug, chanting.

ANGLE ON A FLAME FROM THE CANDLE

Transforming itself onto FIRE in the FIREPLACE of —

INT. CABIN/CAVE — CONTINUOUS

FROM WITHIN THE FIRE we see The Huntress in a meditative pose. She is holding the glass slippers. The fire molds itself to the witch’s face.

THE HUNTRESS
Everything is just as you arranged.

THE WITCH’S FIRE
Is the girl ready?

THE HUNTRESS
She is.

THE WITCH’S FIRE
Throw them in the fire and I shall give you a victorious weapon.

THE HUNTRESS
Then shall I have my revenge?

THE WITCH’S FIRE
Then you shall have choices. Whichever path you take will lead you where you belong.

THE HUNTRESS
I choose the path of vengeance.

She throws the slippers into the fire. They hover amidst the flames transforming themselves into two daggers of GLASS.

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One Response to “Fairy Tale Friday – The Bitter Woods – Chapter 9”

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