The Dancing Angels

August 28, 2012

Megan gazed in wonder as the candles burned brightly, reflecting a golden light that danced upon her cheeks. An angel soared in dance on the warm currents from the candle flames, whilst a second angel was blowing a trumpet and shimmering in the candle glow.

Megan knew she was being naughty. She had pleaded with her mum, Cathy, to buy it. ‘I will be good’ she had promised.

Her mum had sighed ‘If I buy it, you can only light it when mum and dad are with you.’

‘Yes, mummy’ she replied, crossing her fingers behind her back. Her friend Alice had told her that it wasn’t really a lie if you crossed your fingers.

She waited until her mum was busy looking after her brother Ben, or Ben the Brat as Megan liked to call him. She stuck out her tongue in the direction of the nursery, where she could hear her mother soothing Ben, then carefully lifted the box with her very own angels to her bedroom. If her mother had noticed what she had done, she didn’t mention it, so Megan felt safe in her deception.

Her mother might have been more worried had she known about the matches. Megan had found them one day, whilst she was mooching round the house in a sulk. Some nights she would sit next to her window and strike a match, watching as the flame grew and the smoke flew out of her window. The flames danced on the end of the wood and ate the match as they hurried towards her waiting fingers. Megan would hold on to the match as long as she could before blowing it out. Now there were very few matches left in the box.

Her mother had put a sleeping Ben into his cot and called to Megan as she wanted to help her into her nightdress and brush her hair. ‘One hundred strokes of the brush, help me count them.’, Cathy always said as she swept the brush through Megan’s shiny hair. ‘I used to love it when my mother brushed my hair. It was the best times I had with her,Megan. I hope you love it too.’

All too soon her mother announced that she was going for a bath, with a glass of white wine.

‘I need some me time, darling. I deserve it after a hard day at work with you children. You drain mummy. Off to your room and not a peep, I don’t want you to wake up Ben. Thank god he is asleep.’

Alone in her bedroom, Megan carefully placed the candles on to her large wooden dresser. Her bedroom was large and girly with roses on her walls rather than the Disney characters preferred by her friends. The dresser was a family heirloom, heavy and brown with a shiny mirror that Megan would gaze into and wonder what she would look like when she was older. She knelt on the matching stool so that she could reach more easily.

Megan struck a match against the box and watched as the match flared, the sulphur smell catching Megan’s nose for a second. Soon the candles were aflame and the wax slowly began to melt and gutter down the candles. Megan watched, mesmerised as her angel began to dance and the second angel shone with the light gleaming on his trumpet.

At first she didn’t hear the phone begin to ring. She was so enchanted by the flames; she didn’t hear her mum call ‘Megan answer the phone and if it is daddy ask him to wait until I get out of the bath.’ Her father was in Rome for some conference or other and her mum had been unhappy that he wouldn’t take the family with him.

‘Megan!’ her mum had called again, before splashing noisily out of the bath muttering ‘Megan, do you ever listen.’

Megan heard the bathroom door flung nosily open as her mother rushed to answer the phone. Megan whirled towards the door, sure that at any second her mother would walk in to her room and see the candles aflame. Her night dress spun with her and knocked against the candles, catching one of the flames. Megan sprang at the fallen candles, blowing out the flames as the dancing angel spun wildly from the fall.

Megan didn’t feel the heat at first as her night gown began to burn, but as she felt it, she glanced down to see the flames licking their way up her night dress. She screamed ‘Mummy’ as the flames grew higher and more powerful.

Her mother rushed into the room ‘Megan what’s that smell?’ She gasped in horror as she saw the flames engulfing Megan, smoke emerging from her daughter’s hair as it began to singe. Cathy took off her damp house coat and wrapped it around Megan, patting it to smother the flames, whilst stamping out small flames that had sprung up from the carpet. ‘Megan what’ve you done?’

Carefully she carried Megan downstairs and laid her on the sofa whilst she called an ambulance. Cathy realised, she was naked, covered herself with a long coat from the hall stand. Water from her wet hair was dripping down her back as tears ran down her cheeks. Upstairs, Ben began to cry wakened by the noise and strange smells.

Sirens split the night air, as blue lights danced through the windows, whilst in Megan’s bedroom, the angels lay still and forgotten.

Image provided by Creative Writing at

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2 Responses to “The Dancing Angels”

  1. T :-) said

    Really enjoyed reading your story πŸ™‚

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