She’d always wanted a valance for the bed. She thought they were rather posh. He thought they were a waste of money, so she’d never been allowed to buy one.  The day after his insurance money was deposited in her bank account, she went out and bought one.

It was white cotton embroidered with pink rosebuds nestled amongst pea green leaves. She hand washed it, dried it out in the sun, ironed it, before wrestling with the mattress and placing it on the bed. It was beautiful but it made the rest of the bed look shabby.

The next day she went out and bought matching sheets and doona cover. When these were placed on the bed she realised that she would have to redecorate the whole bedroom to match. New curtains, wallpaper and even rugs, all in the rosebud pattern.

At last she was happy. For the first time in her life she was content and went to sleep in her fairy bower. During the night this bower grew, covering herself, the room, the whole house. She became a middle aged sleeping beauty enclosed in her protective linen.

Outside the house the ghost of her husband laughed long and hard, she may have killed him, but she wouldn’t reap the benefits any time soon.

Copyright April 2013


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