This ancient classic gets a modern twist. What if Beauty were the Beast?
Read a sneak peek (below):
Ava stared at the screen, mouth open. Rubbing her eyes, she choked on a cough to suppress it. He was the most beautiful boy she had ever seen -- with a thousand watt smile that she thought could easily melt the sun. He was everything she had imagined. No, he was more than she could have possibly dreamed -- although she was certain she would have liked him, even if he had been ordinary. A pale pink crept up her neck, warming her face, as she realized his image was real. He was before her, his piercing eyes sparkling back at her, a lock of dark hair falling gently across his brow.
He had not run. He had been the one who had wanted to befriend her. He had corresponded with her all these days through email and now he was there - real, a person. Well, on doorbell cam.
For the first time in her life, she felt a strange sensation - almost like she belonged, a normal teenager hanging out with normal friends. Maybe she wouldn’t be cursed to live alone and die unloved after all, she thought to herself woefully. Suddenly, she felt the urge to comb her hair and brush her teeth, even though she wasn’t on camera. Well, no, that wasn’t true. She was always on camera, but he didn’t know that and he couldn’t see her end of the stream. She would explain that to him later, not wanting to make him worry about this already unconventional camaraderie.
“Hello?” the male voice on the other end of the line said patiently for the second time. His hand waved across the screen. Fingers wiggling, then tapping the microphone. Static buzzed. Panicking she realized, she had to speak or her moment would be over.
“Hello!” she managed to squeak much more loudly than she intended. Her hand smacked her forehead.
Her pulse raced despite her fervent prayers to remain calm. Squinting, she tried to read the backup script that she had prepared for just this sort of situation, should her wits fail her. Unfortunately, she hadn’t counted on her other senses, such as reading comprehension, to be similarly stunned. She had practiced all the wonderful things she was going to say. She had a witty opening remark about how it at 3:14 she usually liked pie breaks instead of e-cafe conferences.
Licking her lips to moisten them, she realized suddenly her mouth was quite dry. There were some muffled noises. A clang of the mug and a small squeak as Ava inadvertently pushed her cup onto the floor, tripping over the power cord connected to the wall, while attempting to get a drink for her parched tongue.
“You okay there?” Cody asked, suddenly worried about what antics his kid brother had put him up to that lead him to this point. He was suddenly suspicious that Dylan was up to no good. He’d agreed to greet a hospitalized soccer fan. Before he could speak further, the video feed was disconnected. -- And he was cut off from the lonely beast in Bellevue Insane Asylum, who had confused him with her prince.