When the prince sees the flower bloom from the palm of her hand, he orders her arrest.
She is only seven years old.
He takes the flower from her and keeps it, even though he knows he shouldn't. He puts it a vase, or, rather, his servant does that for him. The flower doesn't ever die, even years later.
It's dawn of a December morning, and he's cold. But still, he stands next to his father dutifully and looks at the little girl with blue eyes that are now black from seven nights sleeping on a cold, dungeon floor behind bars. They cut off her dark brown hair during that time. She's tied to the pyre, and there are seven guards around her, holding sharper swords than normal, not that she could get away. There's one man dressed in black holding an unlit torch, with a mask over his face to prevent his death. His father raises his arm, and the torch is lit.
She locks her gaze to his, and he blinks at her. It's like she expects him to prevent it. He couldn't, though, he can't. She scares him, with her magical flowers and blue eyes identical to that of his servant's. No child should be able to do such horrible things.
It suddenly occurs to him that he knows very little about his servant, and he wonders if that little girl was his servant's daughter. The idea leaves quickly. His servant has probably never even been kissed.
His father the king brings his arm down, and the torch lights the pyre, casting shadows over the courtyard and the crowd. She doesn't scream, nor try to evade the golden-red flames that lick the wood, and then her dirty old clothes, eagerly. She remains perfectly still, and it occurs to him that his mother might have taught her how to endure fire. Tears stream down her face when they nip her skin, devouring her pale white body without mercy, but her gaze holds his, strong and accusing. Smoke begins to rise, black and smelling of burning flesh and fabric. It seems to take forever, but when the flames reach her shoulders, and her eyes scream betrayal, pain, and exhaustion, he cannot bear it any longer and he looks away. She screams then, the sound loud, raw, and piercing in a way nothing else could possibly be. That lasts forever too, eventually fading. But he can still hear it, echoing loudly in his ears, ringing like the execution bells.
When he moves again, his father is gone, and the guards and the torch-holder are, too. The crowd dissipated hours ago. The December sun is just above the mountain, and the resulting rays remind him eerily of fire. He blinks.
And two white clouds become blue, and the sun's rays become fire, and he suddenly sees her eyes all over again, and he knows he will never forget it. He will never forget her screaming, or the smell of her ashes. And he will always regret not saving that little girl.