Warm. Comforting. Safe. Soft scarlet duvets cloak the thick mattress in an odd unearthly gentleness that could only be born of tenderness. A small patchwork quilt at the foot of the bed. Homemade. The crisp feather pillows slept as a duet in heat. Four large oak beams swept up vertically to form four posters topped with a white veil partially shrouding the bed beneath intertwined with the four posters and their canopy; delicate strands of warm golden light bathe the wood in a loving glow. Angels’ halos.
Above the canopy, a candelabra of reindeer antlers and brightly twinkling candles: Stars in the sky. Shining much more brightly than seemingly they should be suspended from a large central oaken beam in the celling – clinging as an icicle. Dotted around the bed; a brown pair of lace up snow boots. Hardy. Scuffed in places. A red knitted scarf with light fringing. A man’s white jumper folded tidily. A small charcoal coloured mat slept beside the bed. A small wooden table adjacent to the bed stood, atop it, a lantern; a silver cylinder with delicate shapes cut out with a little white waxy candle inside peaking out between the cuts, casting a gentle warming glow in shapes all over the wooden walls: A deer; A wolf; A pony. All trotting in time with the world around them. Delight. Beside, a small black notebook, beneath a purple fountain pen – beside that a small ruby berried holly branch in a glassy jam jar.
A large elm frame with a lattice and impermeable crystalline panes sat in the wooden wall opposite the door. Encasing it, long, sweeping, swaying curtains in alabaster crinoline, half shut. The faded daylight seeped in through the divide. Outside, a frozen wonderland: Thick powdery snow embossed with footprints lies on the woodland floor intertwined with many evergreen towering trees all around, lining the high banks of a large frozen river, cut with the tracks of ice skates.
Adjacent to the window, a tall oak double doored wardrobe with bronzed handles. The crest of the wardrobe swirled like snow caught in an evening updraft. Hanging from the handle, a long ivory nightdress with a delicate lace hem and neat bow at the breast. Purity. Warmth. Faith. The hearth sat close by in a towering limestone structure, overlooking all before it. Despite the late hour, it burned brightly with saffron flickering flames dancing and prancing, a remedy to the frost.
Next to the bed, a small wooden cradle slept. A white sheet visible with lace similar to that of the nightdress and a patchwork quilt overlaying it in shades of scarlet and cream with soft cotton folkish patterns embedded into its flesh. The cradle rocked gently in an unfelt breeze. Waiting.