“We are to leave soon, Little Thing,” Ice said lazily one evening while freezing little flowers beside her until the red petals dried and cracked apart. “You must take your heart and move on now.”
Little Thing looked to her.
“I must go?”
“Yes, of course. You must do as little humans do. Walk down the length of the river and matriculate. Clean up your soul a bit. Start anew.”
“You must take me with you,” Little Thing said quietly, her hands beginning to shake.
The immortals began to laugh in a musical chorus. They laughed at her, who had served them faithfully for one thousand years, who had waited so patiently for that very day, who was clever enough to have already started the cogs of her plan turning.
“You are a human, Little Thing,” Ice said clutching her pale side. Tears leaked from her smiling eyes and froze into crystals on her cheeks. “You can never be one of us.”
“But I love you,” Little Thing insisted because while alive she had never learned what that word meant. How was she to know?
Ice looked at her with a hint of pity. She walked to the tree where Little Thing’s heart had been lying dormant for 1000 years. Ice pulled it from from the hole in the trunk. It still bled as if the human had died only yesterday. She held it out.
“Run along now, Little Thing.”
The humans shaking hand’s curled into fists, the nails digging viciously into her palms. She no longer wondered why she was still to feel pain after death. That was the greatest lie they ever told during life: that death was a release, that heaven was a perfect place. Little Thing looked into Ice’s cold eyes and knew there was no end to pain. Not in death, not ever.
“My father was sent to war when I was a child. He died on the battlefield with a hole inside him. When the other side won they came for us, slaughtering us in our beds, my wretched mother, delusional with drink and grief offered me to the enemy sons to spare her own life.” Little thing spoke her truth never before told with a near smile on her wicked face. She took a step toward the immortals. They all stood still together looking quite small for the first time in a thousand years.
“They took me. Each one of them and put a sword in my mothers belly anyhow.”
Little Thing finished her short truth and it seem to echo around them like a newborn’s shrieks. She reached out and took her heart from the immortal’s hand. She squeezed it in her fist like a scrap of paper. It gave under her grip, the flesh pierced easily by her nails. Blood spurted out as it died it’s ghastly death. It splattered across Little Thing’s serene face and drenched the red fabric of her tunic. It was nothing but a little withered scrap when she dropped it to the forest floor.
“Little Thing…” Ice muttered as she looked in horror at the blood on the human’s hands, as the pieces finally fell into place.
“That is not my name. I shall never answer to it again.” She reached up and grabbed the immortal by the chin.
“Call me empress, call me tsaritsa. Call me Regina for I have waited a thousand years to be a queen.” And she closed her mouth over the immortal’s scream, as the last step was completed.
Ice’s frozen skin hummed and in shock of blinding light, she erupted into a hundred million pieces. They
embedded themselves into tree trunks and down into the soil and most importantly into the Queen’s flesh. Pain slashed pleasantly at her and she turned to the other immortals, a bloody, jagged, murderous thing. Without thought or a tear for their fallen friend they disappeared with a gust of wind.
The pieces of the immortal that protruded from her skin still glinted in moonlight as she walked slowly, regally thru the forest and the shards that were sent deep within her, dissolved like melting ice. Their magic, and their power lives in her veins to this day.