He called her Rose, for her peachy skin and the delicate scent of her. She never demurred. Being paid to acquiesce, she did so gracefully.
But she did have memories. She remembered skinned knees, and sunburned skin, and a boy she had loved before the world took him away.
If she cried herself to sleep on those nights when she was alone, she presented a serene face whenever he required her company.
“My Rose,” he gloated, “is without a thorn.”
He would have kept her, but her body left him one day, fading away like a blush rose in winter.