The Red Maiden, Part Seven
- The Red Maiden, Part One
- The Red Maiden, Part Two
- The Red Maiden, Part Three
- The Red Maiden, Part Four
- The Red Maiden, Part Five
- The Red Maiden, Part Six
- The Red Maiden, Part Seven
- The Red Maiden, Part Eight
- The Red Maiden, Part Nine
- The Red Maiden, Part Ten
- The Red Maiden, Part Eleven
- The Red Maiden, Part Twelve
- The Red Maiden, Part Thirteen
- The Red Maiden, Part Fourteen
- The Red Maiden, Part Fifteen
- The Red Maiden, Part Sixteen
- The Red Maiden, Part Seventeen
- The Red Maiden, Part Eighteen
- The Red Maiden, Part Nineteen
- The Red Maiden, Part Twenty
Bullying, War, Trauma/PTSD, Emotional/Physical Abuse,
Self-Harm, Violent Content, Depression. Reader discretion is advised
***This is a work of Fanfiction, as none of the content is my original work. The characters are created by Stephen King and J.R.R Tolkien. The content belongs to MGM and Screen Gems, as the 2013 film remake of Carrie was directed by Kimberly Pierce and produced by Kevin Misher, and additional production is through MGM, Screen Gems, and Misher films as well as distributed by Sony Pictures releasing.***
A stranger like me
Hearing the heartbreaking tale from Balin about the battle of Moria and Thror’s death made Carrie think twice about her snap judgment of Thorin at Bilbo’s house. What made her ten times more sympathetic toward him was when Balin mentioned Thorin’s father Thrain being driven mad by grief before he disappeared. That broke Carrie’s resolve at thinking of him so harshly. Especially when all she had ever heard from her mother about her dad was that the devil got inside her father’s mind and carried him off before she learned the sad truth from gossip around town that he ran away. It filled Carrie with enough rage and pain not only that her father was not there to protect her from the cruelty of her mother but made her both bitter and angry towards her mother for pushing him away with her religious doctrine.
That kind of pain scarred her entire life as much as Thorin losing each of his family members in that battle. It gave her enough determination at that moment to not only let Thorin know how he was not alone but that she was willing to do whatever it takes to make sure he knew that. Even if that would make him understandably angrier, and more spiteful towards Carrie. But she had to try if nothing else, or she would never forgive herself. Carrie waited until everyone else was asleep that night before rising from her bedding, looking for Thorin until she saw him at the edge of a nearby cliff staring out at the wilderness. She crept and tiptoed past everyone before making her way toward Thorin, her eyes glancing to see him barely looking at her then back out at the scene before him.
“Go back to sleep, we leave at dawn,” Thorin said, not even looking at Carrie, his eyes fixated out at the trees as if they held answers. It was the same type of expression Carrie would have looking at a mirror after being tormented by her mother and classmates. Carrie could not blame him one bit as his entire tragic story was unraveled among everyone, knowing she would feel the same way if her tormenting experiences were exposed like that. It made her look at Thorin with the most sympathetic and apologetic gaze she could ever have for anybody.
Silence passed between them, all Carrie’s strength and courage starting to slip away as she tried to think of what to say for what felt like hours. Until Carrie finally found it, turning completely toward him, rolling up the sleeves of her bathrobe revealing scars from her mother trying to grab and shove her in the closet. “Back where I came from,” she said. “Mama never liked when I disobeyed her or sinned,” she began to explain as Thorin looked upon the scratches, his eyes widened in shock, obviously in spite of himself. Her eyes became misty looking back at the memories but she stopped herself from shedding a tear, letting the sleeves roll back down.
“She filled my head with stories of how women were wicked and sinful. But it became an excuse to shove me in the closet, hit me with a bible, anything she could do to keep me reminded of my weak and sinning soul. Tried to tell me stories about how my father was carried away by the devil when he never so much as stuck around to protect me from mama. Left me behind with her,” Carrie continued, still managing to keep herself from crying for reasons she did not know. It became Thorin’s turn to give a sympathetic look, as he faced Carrie giving her a small nod as if allowing her to continue.
“My mama was not the only one to torment me. I used to think that it was because of her that everyone at my school would bully and laugh at me. To this day I never knew why they targeted me. When I discovered my powers and what I can do, I became the happiest girl on earth. I thought no more would anyone hurt me, no more would mama hurt me. And all my dreams came true when Tommy Ross, the most popular boy at school, asked me to prom,” she said as she gave a small smile at that before a sad look started to appear on her face and tears began to fill her misty eyes. “But it was ruined when I was tricked by people that I thought had started to like me. I snapped and killed them. I killed them one by one… And mama? She believed I was filled with Satan’s power, attempted to kill me until I fought back and killed her,” she said as tears left her eyes and gave a small sniff, quickly wiping her eyes, feeling ashamed at herself for sharing her life’s story to him.
Silence once again passed between them as Thorin’s eyes, somehow able to see through Carrie, held understanding. She did not know if that was a curse or a blessing as she looked away from him to the trees beyond, having expected to hear scornful judgment or something that reproached her for what she had done. The silence extended into what felt like hours, leaving Carrie to wonder if she overshared or overstepped her boundaries. “So this is why you would have these nightmares isn’t it?” she heard Thorin ask as she began to face him again, stunned he’d even noticed that. She always assumed that he did not notice or appeared to not notice because she figured he thought it was annoying or disturbing his slumber. Thorin to merely nodded in response, still maintaining that understanding look in his eyes.
Carrie did not know if this was a trick of the eyes or the moonlight that cascaded over Thorin’s features, but she saw what she thought she would never see: a reassuring and gentle smile that spoke volumes. An unspoken type of message that told Carrie he not only understood her and what she saw in her nightmares, but a message that warmed Carrie’s heart and was comforting. It was soon replaced with a sober and serious tone as he turned to face the wilderness again. “Get some sleep now, Miss White. We leave at dawn,” he said without so much as looking at her. Carrie gave him a gentle smile in return before she returned back to her bedding, her mind at ease. She slept as much as possible, still not giving in completely for fear of facing her nightmares. That, and her mind surely doubted that type of gentle and kind nature from Thorin would ever show again.
Unfortunately, Carrie turned out to be right as Thorin appeared to be the same stubborn and angry self when dawn came. It left her wondering if perhaps she was going insane until the company decided to stop at what appeared to be an old and destroyed foundation of a home. She did not listen to a majority of the conversation that was exchanged between Thorin and Gandalf, her thoughts lost in what she told Thorin. She could tell it was starting to grow sour when she heard Thorin, wearing that cloak of anger, snap at Gandalf about the key and map being his to hold alone. Carrie could tell they were harsh words as Gandalf began to storm off in anger, grumbling out loud about how he was seeking the only member of their company with sense. Himself.
Despite her not listening to a lot of the conversation, she could see in many ways where Thorin was coming from. He had the same look of pained anger she would have. Knowing she would make things worse if she dared to approach him now, she waited until nightfall when the entire company was preoccupied before seeking him out. She soon found him sitting by the fire alone, as she started to walk toward him and sat at a distance, not wanting to irritate him or overstep her boundaries. Thorin briefly glanced at Carrie with a look in his eyes that she could tell indicated he was shaken, disturbed, and angry by the earlier conversation between Gandalf and himself.
“You should be asleep,” Thorin said in irritation that made Carrie doubt even more if his kind nature from last night really was a dream. But Carrie knew better than to assume he was saying that to spite her. Carrie kept silent for a moment and looked at the fire, a small smile starting to grow on her face. This left a confused expression on Thorin’s face and distracted him for a moment until he suddenly turned back toward the fire not saying a word. When Carrie began to look back toward him, the small smile on her face faded. However, she unconsciously reached for his hand as a sign of comfort and immediately caught his attention, before she realized what she’d done and snatched it away with tears in her eyes.
“I haven’t been able to sleep peacefully since I started having those nightmares you knew about. I may not know what you and Gandalf talked about, but I could tell there is more to it than what Gandalf may understand. I should know because of how I’ve been hurt my whole life,” Carrie explained. She could see Thorin’s eyes still filled with shock and gave a small sigh. “The point is, I thought you needed company and to know more than anything that you are not alone. If it were me I would have snapped at Gandalf too. I’m sorry I intruded on your evening,” Carrie added as she got up to leave, mentally kicking herself for bothering to approach Thorin.
That is until she felt a hand grab hers as if insisting she stay, pulling her back down in a gentle manner to where she’d been sitting. The action left her stunned. The expression obvious on Carrie’s face when Thorin had the same gentle look in his eyes she’d seen before. What surprised her was not the look in his eyes or the small smile there, but how obvious it was that he was a caring soul that had the same scars she did. He whispered, “Do not ever apologize to me for being concerned, Miss White.” It reaffirmed her impression as he left a gentle kiss on her hand in a gentleman-like fashion, giving her hand a light squeeze in comfort. While her mind would be filled with questions later about why he was being nice to her when days ago she was a thorn in his side, it did not matter now as she smiled warmly at him. It was a picturesque moment that could have gone on forever until a familiar, sharp cry made Thorin’s face immediately become serious, knowing something was wrong. He murmured an order for Carrie to stay before he sprung up, grabbed his sword, and ran toward the sound that meant only one thing: Bilbo was in danger.
**If you or someone is experiencing a mental health crisis, has experienced severe depression, or has experienced a PTSD episode call the national suicide prevention lifeline (1-800-273-8255), text CONNECT or HOME to the crisis text line at 741741, or call 911**