The blue sky shines with that late summer lazy heat, the sun hidden behind the big leafy trees. The still air echoes in the quiet forest, even the squirrels have had their energy sucked by the afternoon mood, and the seldom travelled tracks are randomly littered with sticks and leaves. Peace overshadows all, when footsteps are heard from down the path.
A tall, almost thin twentysomething man walks into view, strolling happily along, whistling, his suit jacket slung over his shoulder, shirt and tie haphazardly pulled loose, so very relieved to have walked out of the conference, so lucky to have found the quiet path, somehow accepted by the foreign environment of the forest. Just walking and whistling.
Not looking very closely though. As he nears the clearing, his shiny black shoe catches in a tree root, and he falls forward, dropping the suit coat, and stumbles to the side of the track. Thrown off-balance, he falls back on his butt.
"Shit!" he shouts, and it comes out much louder than he intends. Putting his arm behind him, he pulls himself up, picks up his jacket, and then pauses, looking puzzled, and turns back to the spot where he fell.
Some of the shrubbery has been pushed aside as he stumbled, and there is an ornate wooden leg, like one from an old-fashioned billiard table, uncovered in the spot. Walking back over, he sweeps some more of the loose leafy material from the leg, and finds that it supports a large glass case. Pushing aside some of the more stubborn shrubs, he realizes the case is the size and shape of a coffin, sitting on four of these ornate legs, and he can vaguely see something through the glass. Using the suit jacket, he wipes the thick layer of accumulating rubbish from the top of the coffin, and suddenly it becomes clear. There is a body in there. A woman's body. But the scratched and dirty glass doesn't allow him to see more clearly. He's filled with a need to see exactly what is in the coffin, and he frantically searches for a way to open it, but the coffin seems to be molded from a single piece of glass, no lid, door, nothing.
Looking around, adrenalin pushing him into action, he spies a rock on the track, picks it up without hesitation, and smashes it through the lid of the glass coffin, and the whole top of the container shatters into small blunt pieces like a smashed car windscreen, and then he can see inside. It is a woman, a beautiful woman, and though she must have been hidden in the bush for years, she looks fine, fresh, though pale and still. And then he notices for the first time that she's stark naked. The coal black hair on her head and between her thighs is the ultimate contrast with the whiteness of her skin, and only her blood red lips provide any variety.
As he stares, mouth open, unable to move a muscle, he realizes that her chest is moving gently. She's alive! Rushing closer, he brushes she glass pieces from her face, desperately trying work out what to do. The confusion of the situation, and the vague thoughts that something familiar was happening threw his normal caution and reservations aside, and he reaches in, lifts the woman's head from the cushion it rests on, bends down toward it, and touches his lips to hers, surprised first that her lips are warm, second that her eyes flutter open, and third that as he releases her head, she sits up, and looks at him, her eyes sparkling with moisture, her bare breasts thrust defiantly, ignoring gravity.
"I thank you kind sir", she states in flawless, inhuman, unreal speech, accompanied by a twinkling of tears, and followed by a broad, honest, grateful smile.
"Yeah, but I... I mean, you... But it's not... Um, ah, that's alright, I guess."
"I can see you are confused, my hero."
"Well, yeah. I just... well, umm, just exactly what the fuck is going on?"
"It's alright, really. Just help me out of here, and I can explain."
"Ah, look, have my coat. Really. Please. I don't understand."
"Why Sir, you are a gentleman. Thank you kindly. Could I possibly ask for your assistance as well?" she says, as she lifts her legs over the side of the coffin, and reaches out to the man.
He reaches around her, trying not to touch her, though the desire to do so is almost overpowering, wraps his jacket around her shoulders, and helps her stand, as she puts her pale feet on the ground, and stands calmly in front of him. "Hero, you have done me great favours. May I ask your name? I am called Snow White."
Suddenly it all clarifies in his shocked brain. "Snow White? The Snow White? Oh, Mark. My name is Mark. You can't really be Snow White."
"Marcus you continue to amaze me. You have heard of me?"
For some reason he doesn't want to correct her pronunciation. He has always hated the name Marcus, but it sounds different as she says it. He leans against the coffin, strangely dizzy, and manages a quick, fuzzy, and not quite correct recitation of the classic Snow White story, ala Disney.
"Ha ha. My hero, that isn't quite how it all happened. I suspect things have been misinterpreted over the years. I think you need to hear the correct ending. After all, you're now part of it."
"I don't know that I'm up to too many more surprises princess, but go ahead."
"Well, the part at the castle is roughly right except that I must admit to being less of an angel than the story you tell. My stepmother wanted me out of the way because she didn't want me to provide an heir to the throne, and well, I was having a great time practicing, if you understand my meaning." She says all of this without a hint of embarrassment, smiling at Mark cheekily.
"And the dwarf story, though entertaining is completely false. The Queen was an evil witch alright, but she wasn't imaginative enough for that apple business. She cooked up a spell that should have killed me there and then, but she was unaware that my mother was something of a witch herself, and the spell resulted in my entranced sleep."
"So what about the true love stuff?"
"Well, that's close to correct, but love isn't the issue. Anyone who found me desirable would do. You must have thought I looked pretty in there."
Blushing bright red, Mark looks at the Princess again. "I have to admit, I did, and I still do."
"Just as well my hero. You see, there is only one way to break the spell completely. You must make love to me."
"What? You've got to be kidding. I can't even believe this is for real. I can't do that."
"Of course you can Marcus. You are the only one who can break the spell."