Once upon a hushed moonless night, a Queen in a far away land gave birth to her fourth consecutive daughter. The King loved his wife and daughters, but was troubled without a male heir, as to who should rule at the end of his reign.
They called him crow. Those lackwit boys at the Conservatorio, Paolo and Riccardo. Tenors with sugared voices and decayed souls. Mocking his voice, his corvid croak. Mocking his pain. The fire. His parents. His sweet little sisters. The door that just wouldn't open.
Erica threw her handbag on the kitchen table, narrowly missing the stained teapot and one of Suzie's seven cats that lay curled against it. She hated having to come to her sister's sty and was never sure whether the taint of ammonia in the air was...