She feels it slipping. She knows she can’t turn back and so when it falls, she just keeps running up the stairs. Behind her, the glass slipper tings down a few steps before it shatters. Still she must run. Before the magic slips away. Before she loses this perfect night.
Barefoot, she runs, clinging to the lone slipper as her gown turns to rags. She can already see the magic fading from her coach up ahead. She must make it in time. As her feet hit the rocky ground she leaves behind a trail of blood. This pain is nothing.
Finally, she opens the coach door and pulls herself inside. The driver signals the horse and the Prince quickly fades in the distance. The coach hits the bumpy road a little too hard and a wheel comes off, turning to a vine as it hits the ground. The other wheels turn to vines as well and the coach crashes and rolls to a stop.
She crawls out of the pumpkin and curls up in her rags behind the nearest tree. As she cradles the remaining slipper, she sighs. Now the Prince will never have a way to find her.
She rolls over in her bed, wondering for a moment where she was before she realized it had all been a dream. There had never been any magic. She never had a fairy godmother. There was never any Prince. She wasn’t in a fairy tale, she had been here the whole time. In this bed. As alone as the first night he left her. Her heart broke a little more as she looked at the empty bed beside her and she wondered how many times it would break before it finally shatters like the glass slipper.