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I don’t know when I wrote this, but I kind of sort of liked it and rethought my previous stance on exclamation points.

She moved her legs like finely tuned instruments, dancing methodically with an air of listlessness about her. One, two, three, and four…one, two, three, and four…her toes pointed and her ankles ached, but in those moments of pain she felt most beautiful.

He watched her. One, two, three and four…Her calves were smooth and strong, her thighs slim and youthful. To him, her neck evoked a swan and her eyes a soft, ethereal girl who spent her days riding horses. In truth, she had never been on a horse, though he longed to watched her bounce up and down with such an unearthly grace and see her chestnut hair get tossed in the wind. Time had bestowed upon her the reassuring gaze of a seasoned mother, but her skin remained virginal and smooth. She was the perfect woman to him.

Her body stopped moving and instead placed itself gently on the ground. In his mind, he imagined himself unwinding her and then lovingly putting his porcelain doll down, as to not tarnish such a valuable play thing. How he wished for her to be his plaything! Few things in life would be more thrilling than if she could look into his face with her maternal expression and angelic lips parted ever so slightly.

“Can you help me with my laces?”

The words were a sweet, seductive music that rang through his ears. Of course he would. Following procedure, he walked over unassumingly and took great care in gently unlacing her ballet slippers. His heart fluttered as he adolescent hand brushed her soft legs, lined with fine white hair. Beautiful! Ravishingly beautiful….one, two, three and four. Bouts of passion quaked in his chest, his breathing began to stutter, and out the window he saw a pastel butterfly color the view. Beautiful! This was a both a woman and a girl, a mother and a child, a lover and a sister. She would never look at him with anything other than mild disinterest and familiarity. But day by day, he watched her as one would watch a princess in a tower. He longed for her like a peasant who looked into her window. She was so distant. Beautiful!

“Why are you shaking?”

He was. He was trembling in awe of her beauty, of all that was in this porcelain doll of a woman. No, a girl. A sister! A lover. He longed, and longed and longed for her.

“Is something wrong?”

An eyebrow raised, ethereal blue eyes staring him dead in the face. He looked down at tiny, pink feet that should have been bloodied from her dancing, yet remained perfect. Smooth arches, virginal skin. His trembling grew more dire. He loved her so, he wanted to be crushed by her gentle pastel beauty. Yes, she could dance upon him until he was buried beneath the earth that forbade him. Beautiful! She could puncture his heart with a small, slippered foot, en pointe. It would all be worth it, for a glance at that soft pink flower that hid between her legs, one he had probably glimpsed in childhood, before she was so beautiful. Beautiful! He couldn’t take it much longer. He wanted to see her dance for him, to lay down before him, a blank canvas of white skin. He wanted to drink the calm blue ocean of her eyes. Beautiful! Forbidden! Beautiful! Impossible!

She pulled away in shock, disgust, and mild amusement from his quivering wet lips. She shook her head and walked away. As she walked, she danced freely, and to herself. One, two, three, and four…

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