The mask is a part of me now. What once was the skin of a felled deer has adhered to my own and I am lost without it. The court hasn’t noticed, refuses to see the parts of me beneath the mask. I smile for them and nod, the mask has stayed on since the last ball. I barely recognize my own eyes through it, and yet each day they call out my name as if they know me.

That night, the ball, I wish I had known what was going to happen. I would never have gone. I’d have never found my way outside. I’d never have took his hand, never would have blushed at his kiss.

What disgusting magic has bonded me to that night without the notice of any of my fellows? I wish I knew. I wish others could see the mask is not me. Each hand I graciously accept, each kiss I blush at is a lie. Each one reminds me of that night, each one fills me with overwhelming misery and nausea.

How do I remove this mask? How can I make them see? Maybe if I find him, I can rip his mask off too.

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