The Lady of Shallot
(This is a short story written based solely on the picture our tenth grade English teacher showed us before reading the poem by Tennyson.)
The wind blew silently, as it had all night, and a candle flickered for a second before sputtering out.
She shivered. Only one candle was still lit and the lantern at the front end of the small boat gave a faint light. The strange symbols carved mystically on the sides of the sturdy craft did nothing to calm her nerves all night. Good. The sun was rising and soon she would be warm.
As she moved, the chains clanked together and she swore to herself. She should never have been so careless.
“The past and future are the same. Only the present is different,” she remembered hearing the old magician tell her. He had claimed that the only way to protect her lover from the wrath of her husband was to travel into the past and she would find what would save both of them.
Now her lover was dead. Her husband forced her to watch as they slowly tortured him to death, starting with his fingernails and moving along his body, inflicting pain in sadistic fashion.
Shaking now from the ghastly memories, she cried to the heavens to kill her now- to take her from the hell she was in. She picked up the chain which fastened her to this spot. Looking down, she saw the tapestry her husband had thrown in with her. Embroidered on the beautiful drapery was herself, in a small row boat, chained as she was to a tree covered with moss.
“This is a sign from the devil!” she shrieked hysterically. Quickly, she gathered up the chain, wrapped herself more tightly within the tapestry so that she could hardly move and threw herself into the cold, icy stream.
There was a struggle underneath the water, but soon it subsided and all that was left of the Lady of Shallot was a small, overturned boat.