Here I offer a rather dramatic retelling of the ancient tale of The Rose, which originates in classical Greek mythology.
The luscious hue of the charming red rose invokes a rapturous thrill for many who consider it a symbol of romantic love. Alas for me, Aphrodite — the goddess of love herself — it has ever been a symbol of sorrow and an aching heart. I possessed the great misfortune of arousing the love of two utterly different beings. One was the god of war, Ares, and the other a mortal of more profound beauty than my eyes of love had yet witnessed; Adonis was his name. I found the tempestuous temperament of Ares to be quite distasteful, even repulsive. The presence of this god was only made endurable by the gentle wooing of my beautiful Adonis whose elegant stature and lovely golden locks were most appealing. Thus it was my dismal lot in life to bear the love of two beings but only return that of one; the consequence was bitter.
It so happened that I had unknowingly provoked Ares to malicious resentment by my attraction to this mortal. In his wrath, he deemed it necessary for the life of my beloved Adonis to end before its time in order that I may sooner forget his glorious existence. I did not forget, nor shall I ever lose the remembrance of that piteous night still etched hideously in my memory. Ares impulsively executed his wretched plan and swiftly descended from his lofty perch in the heavens to assault my devoted love. I caught a glimpse from afar of my dearest one as he was mercilessly struck down by a single wrathful blow from the god of war. The horrendous view wrenched the very depths of my heart and I felt as though a vital part of my existence had been pitifully extracted from my being.
Blinded by tears of rage and sorrow, I lunged forward extending every effort to approach the site of my suffering love, that I might protect him from the unfaltering rage of his ruthless assailant. In my fury, I became entangled in the groping claws of a scornful rose bush. Its menacing thorns tore at the flesh of my tender heel and, ripping it asunder, became drenched in the red blood which outpoured. Caught in my vicious trap, I was forced to watch as the love of my life was gruesomely murdered before my very eyes. I was wracked with the excruciating agony of my grief and, as I sobbed, I saw the pure white rose transform to a scarlet hue. To this day, this flower has ever remained a symbol of the innocent blood spilt on that dreadful night. Though the slash which colored it remains but a simple scar, the wound in my heart still bleeds and I shall forever consider the shameless beauty of the rose not a symbol of joyous love but rather the bane of my existence.