I read this short story in the early 90s and I would love to get hold of the whole book. I think it was an anthology of female science fiction and fantasy writers, possibly lesbian writers.

The story I remember best is a retelling of Cinderella from the godmother's point of view. It becomes clear during the story that the godmother is a vampire and that she has chosen Cinderella to join her. Cinderella is excited about getting beautiful dresses and going to balls and doesn’t understand the transformation that is happening.

The godmother character lives with the family during this time and it’s obvious they know what is happening but they are poor and accept it as ultimately being in Cinderella’s best interests. The pair go to the ball and it’s only when the godmother makes a comment about needing the invitation to be able to cross the threshold that you realise as a reader they are vampires.

There is someone at the ball that tries to kill them and that’s all I remember.

  • Can you remember whether this also featured a Snow White retelling from the queen's POV, in which it became clear that Snow White was a vampire, and the queen's attempts to stop her and save her people all eventually failed? If it did I might remember hearing about this one.
    – AJM
    Feb 12, 2019 at 11:00
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    @AJM - That was from Neil Gaiman's 'Smoke and Mirrors', which didn't have a version of Cinderella. Don't know if it's appeared in any other collections, though it is from 1998, so may well have done in the right-ish time frame for the question. Feb 12, 2019 at 11:04
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    Not an answer but a comment, could it have been Love In Vein, or Love In Vein II? They were collections of stories about vampires. The second also included "Snow, Glass, Apples" the Neil Gaiman store AJM alluded to. Feb 12, 2019 at 11:13
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    The vampire aspect was much more subtle. It was more feminist than vampiric in tone, comparing the similarities between being a woman and being a vampire. The anthology was either women writers or lesbian writers. There was another story (pretty sure it was the same book) about a female warrior who is contracted to take a priestess on an atonement quest. At one point the priestess gets them into trouble and the warrior makes a deal with an demon that dampens her powers, and bitterly bemoans the fast that the people who cause trouble are never the opens that have to bear the consequences. Feb 12, 2019 at 19:13
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    Also I read this 1990-1993. Pretty sure about the dates as I read it while at university. Feb 12, 2019 at 20:19

1 Answer 1


I'm pretty sure you're talking about "Ever After," a short story in Susan Palwick's book The Fate of Mice.

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    Welcome to SFF! Can you add some explanation of how this story matches the description in the question?
    – Michael
    May 21, 2020 at 20:57
  • Oh, nice find! This is undoubtedly the correct story. It was anthologized 6 times in a year and a half after it was published, but I don't see any themed anthologies in the list.
    – DavidW
    May 21, 2020 at 21:32
  • @DavidW: Virtuous Vampires is a bit themed, but I don't see a story that looks like it might match the warrior and priestess story.
    – FuzzyBoots
    May 22, 2020 at 13:27
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    @FuzzyBoots I didn't pay attention to VV because it (1996) was after the range (1990-93) given; as always that doesn't mean it's wrong, just that I didn't look that far afield with so many other possibilities.
    – DavidW
    May 22, 2020 at 13:57

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