Greatest Love, Greatest Hate

In the time of the Kigiku Empire, ruled by King Suisen II, the royal family produced a single daughter named Shirayuri before the Queen tragically passed away. She was raised in the most richest, and glorified way, showered with presents, jewels, and valuable merchandise, shielded from any darkness of society. She was living in such a carefree way, perhaps almost utopian like, that she did not realize any of society’s ways.


As a child, I had always played with my cousin, Sayuri, after my mother had passed away. He would make me smile, laugh, and forget the pain; the memories that I had hidden deep in my heart. In truth, when I picture the face of my mother, I no longer remember her. But what had replaced my pain was for my love for Sayuri; my gentle, kind, saviour, rescuing me from the depths of depression and sorrow.

I caught the sound of his voice, breaking away my current thoughts about my 16th birthday coming soon. He was walking behind my father, the King, laughing melodiously at something my father had said. I smiled, my furrowed brow eased into a warm, welcoming face as I tried my best not to run full speed towards him. Sayuri’s face lit up when I saw him, and after exchanging polite greetings, he laughed, saying that I did not have to be so polite to him, which inevitably resulted in my face turning into a very red tomato. He patted my head, walking away to talk with some other lords. He seems to still treat me like the kid I was ten years ago.

As I watched him disappear from my sight, my father turned towards me, wearing a rather serious face. I was surprised because my usual merry-looking father, seemed to look like he was dealing with a war plan. “Shirayuri”, he said, “How would you like to marry one of these lords on my list?” He handed me a piece of paper, his hand writing scrawled across the page with a bunch of names listed from different regions and states. Horrified, I skimmed through the names with shaking hands, hoping, and hoping that maybe Sayuri’s name could be written on. To my disappointment, I read until the last name on the list. My father raised his brow, as if asking if I had already chose one. “Father, I do not see Lord Sayuri’s name on this list. Did you forget to write his name?” I exclaimed, heat raising up to my flushed cheeks. “No Shirayuri. You will not marry Sayuri.” My father said obstinately.                                                                “Why not!?” I cried, “He is the one I want to marry, and the most trustworthy out of all the other lords!”                                                                                                                                                                            “NO!” My father yelled, “I have given you everything you have ever asked for, but I cannot give you Sayuri.” Surprised, I fled the room, tears filling up into my eyes, more confused than ever about my father. I hurried as fast as my feet could allow, and collapsing on my bed, I stayed confined in my room.

Later on in the night, I gathered up my courage to ask my father again about my future spouse, too worried about myself to notice that there were no guards outside my father’s door. What did catch my attention was the fact that the door was already partially open, and ignorantly I called out to my father. Sliding the door, I came face to face with Sayuri, his hands holding the sword dripping with blood that was embedded into my father’s heart.  There was blood everywhere; on my father, the floor, and on Sayuri’s hands.  My eyes widening in shock, I rushed to my father’s side, and slowly sank to my knees.                                                                                                                                   “Sa..Sayuri, the.. the doctor.. call the doctor!” I cried desperately, not wanting to believe what I just saw.                                                                                                       Sayuri closed his eyes, drawing the sword out of my father’s lifeless body so easily as if he had just sewed some silk.  “Oh, Princess Shirayuri, I was told by the guards that you do not usually enter your father’s chambers… Why now, of all days?” I didn’t notice, but I had bitten the inside of my cheek so hard that the scarlet red littering the floor was also dripping at the corner of my mouth.  I called my father’s name over again, only to be interrupted by Sayuri.

“The king will not wake. I, am the one who killed him.” Oh, why did it take my own father’s death to realize my own incompetence? My father had noticed something was going on. Why didn’t I? I closed my eyes,  burning tears rolling on my cheeks.  “Why did you do this Sayuri? You were the king’s closest advisor…”                                                                                                                                                             “Exactly, innocent princess of Kigiku. I have longed for this day, to satisfy my ardour for power, and clutch it in my hands, however bloody they would become. Your father was a foolish king; easily decieved. He allowed an infiltrator like me, to become so close to him. If all goes according to my plans, I will be the last one standing with royal blood.”

I thought of the memories I had with Sayuri, as a child he was a frail and sickly, but he was also gentle and kind. The person I had fallen in love with, was only an illusion. My poor torn, broken heart. No, he broke my mind and very soul. Hate seethed inside of me, and like a helpless mosquito caught in a spider’s web, I clung to it.

“You TRAITOR!” I screamed, were the last two words that came out of my mouth, before I too, felt the glistening sword slash against my throat.




I used Japanese flower symbolism (Hanakotoba) through out my story.

Kigiku (Yellow Chrysanthemum) – imperial

Suisen (Daffodil) – respect

Shirayuri (White lily) – purity/ innocence

Sayuri (Orange lily) – hatred/ revenge

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2 thoughts on “Greatest Love, Greatest Hate

  1. Dear Kelley,

    OMG. This thought is crazy. But it might work.

    I think I saw Frankenstein in this piece. (Well really, I can see Frankenstein almost anywhere now, but your piece was undeniably a moment for the book. )

    Correct me if I’m wrong, but I see the monster’s characteristics in Shirayuri; she is sweet and innocent, like the monster originally was.

    Sayuri is consumed by hatred and the lust for revenge – like the monster after his heart is broken by the De Laceys.

    For Victor, I drew parallels between how Shirayuri steps out of line and lets her passions get the best of her, just like how Frankenstein is consumed by his passions.

    Then there is Sayuri the traitor – in Frankenstein, the monster thought Victor was a traitor.

    Even the TITLE is reflective of this connection – Victor and the monster hate each other, but they also have an unbreakable bond.

    If you intentionally did this, then WOW. (Even if you didn’t intend it, WOW.)

    I’m probably reading too much into this, so I’ll step back and calm down for now and compliment you on your beautiful writing skills. Your ability to tell a story amazes me! I never felt distracted while reading it – the events happened in such a way that, once I started, I HAD to complete reading it.

    My favourite component of this short story was the flower symbolism! I am completely biased because I have a personal interest in botany and the symbolism of plants, but I think anyone who reads your blog will realize that you did an undoubtedly excellent job of weaving this element into the piece. The only thing I would ever think of tweaking is the formatting (but I realize that the program makes it hard to write in the correct short story format. Oh well.)

    Kelley, you are a phenomenal writer! I respect and admire you so much! Thank you for posting this blog – as you can tell from my comment, I enjoyed it very much!

    With love,

  2. Kelley,
    First of all, WOW! I absolutely loved reading this, but I probably can’t give you as much feedback as Tarannum. I’ll try my best though.
    Being a symbolism fanatic myself, I loved your usage of it throughout the piece. It felt natural and helped to enhance the various themes in the story. The flow of the plot was very smooth and didn’t feel rushed at any point. You did a good job at keeping the twist a secret until the very end, because I was genuinely surprised when I got to the big reveal. Even with it being a short piece, I found myself engaged in the plot and wondering what would happen next.
    One thing I would offer for improvement would be the formatting of the piece. I noticed that the indents on the paragraphs were irregular, although I’m not sure if this was just due to some issue with Edublogs.
    Otherwise, this was a very entertaining and engaging read!

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