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This is from a WIP, with the placeholder name of “Bluebeard,” very loosely based on that fairy tale. Every year on the Winter Solstice, a sorcerer takes a sixteen-year-old girl as his bride, divorcing her and exiling her before he takes a new bride the next year.
Summary: The sorcerer Aamir “Mire” has married the narrator, Gwyn, spelled them into his tower, interviewed her, suggested rather rudely that she can visit his bedroom if she gets lonely, and she stormed off. She decided to snoop around his floor, and just as she was about to leave his bedroom, he opened the door.
His hair lay flat, damp against his skin, of which plenty was visible in his carelessly belted robe.
My cheeks blazed with embarrassed heat.
“Changed your mind already?” He asked with a knowing smile.
“I was exploring. Why don’t I get a balcony?”
His smile cracked and vanished. “Stay off the balcony.” He pushed past me, checking the door as if I might have tampered with it.
* * *
This story is very loosely based on Bluebeard. The sorcerer is cursed, and the brides are caught up in the curse, though the nearby villagers don’t know how or why. He keeps the kingdom safe with his magic, and his brides tie him to a land he couldn’t otherwise protect. There are other ways to do this tying–but his curse demands a bride.