BySophie Atkinson, writer at
Sophie Atkinson

And lo, the young ladies of the town rent their garments in two, and they dressed in black, and they wept long and heartily into their pillowcases. They declined sweetmeats and dances, for sooth, it was too inappropriate, said they.

"Hast thou not heard?" one apple-cheeked maiden asked me. "Your eyes are unreddened by tears and your face is too bright and sunny. Twilight star AKA Jasper Hale is like, totally off the market."

"Thou liest!" I gasped. Jackson Rathbone! He of the steely abs! He of the peculiarly titled side project, his band, 100 Monkeys!

"Nay," the maiden said mildly. "I hate to bear such sad news to you, but sooth, it is true. He wed last week."

I swallowed my pride. "Sweet maiden," said I. "Knowest thou who this most fortunate of women is? She must be a woman of such humility, modesty and grace, to win the heart of such a prize."

She sighed before producing a picture from her pocket. I stared at it, stunned.

"Dear child," said I, faltering. "I...understand not. What profession does this woman, inked like the pages of a picture book, hold?"

"She is a burlesque dancer."

"What is such a thing? Is burlesque a dance performed at court?"

"Nay. Sheila Hafsadi is a lady endorsing a nostalgic portrayal of female sexuality, woman as the object of the laviscious male gaze, with the retro stylings of the act lending it a thin veil of ostensible irony."

'I see.'

I did not know what to think.

"When did they wed, dear sister?"

"Sunday last." She scowled at the thought of it. "I wonder if this partnership will be an immortal one?"

"Sister!" I said, shocked. "Knowest thou not thy Bible? Their souls are wedded for eternity!"

"That's true," she admitted, with a strange smile. "But what if one half of the couple hast NOT a soul?"

I saw her point. Game on, Sheila.


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