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Thursday, 17 September 2009

Damask Rose


The massage cost £35. Bella accepted the extra 50p with a tight, grateful smile.

‘Goodbye Mrs Harrison.’

‘Tightwad’, she thought, and threw the coin in the tips box.

‘I’m so tired of them’ Bella complained to the essential oils in their golden basket. The tiny bottles shuffled about, clinking against each other, acknowledging her plight.

Bella sighed, drained with exhaustion. Despite the shimmering aura of protection she summoned daily, her clients’ pain and sadness still seeped so easily into her soul.

Checking her diary for the next appointment, Bella’s heart dropped. Lavender fell against Rosemary in distress, Bergamot rolled her citrus eyes.

‘Awful woman. Sap her.’

Bella looked around the clinical white room, tea-lights burning, flames wavering in a breeze that came from nowhere. Neroli smirked at Jasmine. Frankincense nudged Thyme, ‘Say it again’.

‘Sap her strength’ Thyme said, more boldly. Bella plucked the green bottle from its nest and held it to her ear. She gasped as it uttered the perfect blend.

‘But that’s unethical!’

Ylang Ylang swayed her sultry scent. ‘Sweet, sweet treachery’ she sang.

‘Lovely to see you, Mrs Greaves’ Bella said, not ten minutes later. ‘I’ve got something really special for you today.’

(c) Michele Ranger/Lily Childs May 2009

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