Posted on January 20th, 2016 | by Leslie

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Until the Day I Die

Notes on Track 7

Picture The Princess & the Frog but on the set of Aladdin.  There’s a ruler’s daughter, just 16, dreaming of the man she’ll marry in six months but too impatient to wait it out so when she’s offered a golden-fortune-ball she’s grateful and eager for its secrets.

Imagine a cistern in the ruins of a temple where there should be a well, and the dark and twisted, ancient creature in its depths who’s not so much a frog as an elemental demon.  When she drops the ball – in more ways than one – she finds she’s made a bargain from which she cannot emerge unscathed.

But she runs anyway.  She runs and it follows, all the way to the palace.  It knocks on the door insistently.  She denies its presence, its hold on her, its desires, but slowly she realizes there is no escape.  Her maids dress her for bed and leave her there to wait, blissfully ignorant that she knows her fate is sealed.  In the morning they wed but there are only tears as the household bids them farewell.  Their journey won’t be a long one..

Come to think of it, don’t picture The Princess & The Frog at all.  You’ll get nightmares, Tanith Lee-style.

Source

  • Tanith Lee, “The Princess and Her Future” in Devils & Demons: A Treasury of Fiendish Tales Old & New, selected by Marvin Kaye. (Doubleday & Co, Inc.: New York, 1987) p 203-211.

Lyrics

He was waiting for her
At the bottom of his well
She was innocent
And he could tell
He’d been bound there
By incorporeal bonds
Just as ancient
As the dawn

She was coming for him
Though she didn’t know his name
He was dangerous
And he’s to blame
She’d been drawn there
By the very fate she sought
She was destined
To be caught

Magic token
Golden ball
What’s my future?
Tell me all
Will I be a happy bride
With a loving husband at my side
Until the day I die?

He was counting on her
Coming close enough to touch
She was beautiful
He knew that much
She was mesmerized
By the token she beheld
Til she lost it
In the well

She was begging for it
For her future lay within
She was furious
And he gave in
But he grabbed her
For one terrifying pause
Then released her
From his claws

He stalked her
As she ran from him
A silent blackened wave
A man but not a man who could be saved
A bargain made in ignorance
Has ne’ertheless a consequence
And in the dark
He held her like a grave

Magic token
Golden ball
What’s my future?
Tell me all
Will I be a happy bride
With a loving husband at my side
Until the day I die?

She was waiting for him
To release her from his spell
He was ravenous
And she could tell
They were married there
In the light of her last day
He the hunter
She the prey

Magic token
Golden ball
What’s my future?
Tell me all
Will I be a happy bride
With a loving husband at my side
Until the day I die?

Oh, until the day I die
Oh, he will love me
Until the day I die

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