Chapter 1: From the Sky to the EarthBirth: The Marionette was born from the sky. Attached by strings. Lots of strings. She never did speak, for her shy lips were glued together. Her features were almost painted on as if an artist had taken his brush and acrylics and delicately composed them there. But in reality, they were drawn on. Curse those good-for-nothing brushes.
School: She was the most beautiful girl in the school, and the most well-mannered. She had a petite frame and a small smile, carrying her books properly like a good little girl. She got straight A’s and despite her inability to speak, she raised her hand for every question. Everybody hated her. Except, of course, the puppet fanatic, who slunk down the hallways like a wet cat.
Childhood Friend: The Marionette had no friends. Even imaginary children avoided her in the halls.
Youth: The Marionette spent the majority of her time trying out for school plays. She practiced every day with beautiful sweeping gestures and a waltz that would put Broadway performers to shame. She was rejected for every role she tried out for, most presumably because they all had talking parts. Finally, she was able to get a role as a marionette. Unfortunately, she was terrible at being a marionette. She lost the role and everyone booed her away. That night the Marionette cured cancer. Her teachers scolded her on the use of dangerous chemicals.
First Date: The Marionette stood waiting by the door, her blue velvet dress sweeping across the ground elegantly. Her face was as beautiful as ever, her chin poised just right so that the night sky shrouded half of her face in darkness. She had even penciled on some lipstick and light blue eyeliner to match her dress. At four-thirty am precisely, the puppet fanatic picked her up, seven hours after they were supposed to leave. She generously took his hand, and together they strode down the street, the perfect couple. Until the puppet fanatic smeared whipped cream in her face and ran away laughing, accompanied by her school bullies. The following morning the puppet fanatic awoke to find his entire house had been covered in a mysterious creamy white paint.
First Job: Her first job was perfect. All her school plays had paid off. Finally, more excited than ever, she stepped into… the temp office. Well, guess we all have to start somewhere.
Fired: 10 minutes after she got her job, the Marionette was fired. “You’re just too dang perfect,” her boss said, annoyed even at the sight of her. The Marionette nodded understandingly and walked away, her co-workers all staring at her with envy and disgust. The next day, she made everyone a “Sorry I’m Perfect” cake, frosted neatly with flawless handwriting and mini figurines of all the coworkers sticking out of the top. No one took even a bite.
Fear: She cringed as her feet clicked softly on the tile floor, staring haughtily at the encased bodies. Death hung loosely in their eyes, the glass chamber their final retirement. Clear strings punctured their bodies as lifelines, their eyes closed and hands crossed on their chests. CRUNCH. She looked down and silently screamed, one of the bodies crushed beneath her foot. The guard noticed and told her not to smash the puppets.
Marriage: The Marionette glided down the aisle as the pianist elegantly strode his hands over the keys with such pride it made her eyes water with joy. Her face had a white veil draped over it with beautiful intricate patterns sewn into the silky fabric. Her dress was white and flowing and floated down the aisle soft as a dove’s feather. She strode up to her fiance who was awaiting her at the top of the stairs, a smile stretching across their face. She recited her vows in a beautiful, silky voice, and silently anticipated as her fiance delivered them back to her. Finally, the priest said the magical words that would shape her future, “You may now kiss the bride.” She leaned in, awaiting this moment for her whole life. She felt their lips brush against hers, and she drifted closer, eager for more … and then she woke up.
Second Marriage: Don’t ask.
Mother’s Death: Her mother lay in her casket, a beautiful work of art just as her daughter had been. Her eyes were penciled shut. The Marionette cried non-existent tears, her sob inaudible. Little did she know she never even had a mother.
Retirement: The Marionette finally retired from her perfect job, the one she never had. She threw herself a retirement party no one ever came to and patted herself on the back for a job well done. She cried for four hours afterward.
Death: All angels will rest. She was the most perfect girl to ever be, her face still youthful and beautiful. Her strings hung limp, her wood cracking and splintering. As she faded away, wood split where her lips were sealed. She gasped, and although she possessed no vocal cords, somehow a tiny voice resonated within her, producing her first, and last, sentence: “Goodbye forever.” Then she was gone.