What am I going to do with a diary? They are so stupid! It is my birthday and I get a diary! Actually my birthday was three months ago, I just decided to start writing in it now. To bad if I am a little slow. It is not really my fault, right? I mean my twin brother more then makes up for my slowness, except he inherited this castle and nobody as heard from him since. Most irresponsible of him if you ask me.
Let me see, what should I write today? Nothing interesting happens to me! I have a couple of brothers and a little sister. Jaden is the oldest, James is my younger twin. So that makes me, prince Justin, the second oldest. Then John and Joseph are also twins. Then there is Jerome and baby sis, I forget her name. Let me share the news, a banquet on Saturday, with some idiot's family, who is supposed to marry John- no wait- I mean Jaden- well one of my brothers anyway. I am afraid the banquet is going to be really boring!
So today this stupid sewing person came and measured us all for new suits. John says- I got plenty of suits, why do I need another? Mother says- All of you are going to be married before next Spring, so I am going to order the suits now! John looked like he wanted to die! As for me, I am never ever going to marry anyone! Gross! By the way, I forgot to give my parents the letter from some stupid lord, that he gave me about a year ago. I found it in the bottom of my quiver, while I was cleaning it out. Mother is really mad at me! It is not like their was anyone hanging around to remind me. She ranted about it all through dinner, which gave me a headache.
Today is Saturday and guess who disappeared right before we had to leave for the banquet? Jaden of course! That sneak thought he could get of marrying an idiot princess, by hiding. So now the rest of us have to entertain her! Although, she should be entertaining us, as we are her guests. Well, technically her parents' guests, but that is hardly the point. During the dinner the princess just stared at us, while our parents talked about the sudden disaster which forced Jaden not to come. There really was no disaster, other then Jaden getting turned into a fat slimy toad by little sis's fairy godmother. To bad James is not around, we could have had a good laugh over this. Jaden is so bossy, he deserves to be a toad. Especially since he got out of this banquet.
Horrors! I overheard my parents talking about Jaden's untimely disappearance, and the princess. They actually want me to marry her! ME? What have I ever done to deserve a wife? I am just a poor innocent bystander. It was not my fault that Jaden is now hopping around the garden! I went down to the garden and called for Jaden. Of course the coward would not answer. I lost my temper, which is something I rarely do, and wished the princess would sleep for a hundred years, at least until I was safely dead! Suddenly there was a flash and the fairy that had turned Jaden into a toad, appeared.
“Prince Justin, what is wrong with your family?” she asked.
“Nothing, except we are very rich!” I tried to assure her, “And my parents want me to get married.” She shook her head. Right about then I figure that was not the correct response.
“Justin, two of your brothers are under spells, and it looks like you will need a punishment as well!” I did did not like the sound of that.
“But only Jaden is!” I protested.
“Your princess shall prick her finger as has been prophesied at her birth!” the fairy cried, “But instead of sleeping for a hundred years, she will sleep until you awaken her with love's first kiss!”
“Gross! Never!” I yelled. I could feel my face turning a lovely shade of sour apple green at the very thought of doing something so revolting.
“There will be no escaping your fate!” The fairy cried as she started to disappear, “You will live until you do, even if it is forever!” What a horrible fairy! She must have cursed James as well as me and Jaden. Hopefully, John, Joseph and Sis escape her treachery! I really should just get this over with. But the idea of kissing a girl is most frightening.
We have been invited to that horrible Princess's home again! I pretended to be sick but mother practically forced me into the carriage. I complained that we just went there. Mother said that it was Princess Eleanor's sixteenth birthday, and everyone had been invited. Good grief, the princess is only a child! She is nowhere near old enough to be thinking of marriage! I told mother as much. She had to remind me that I was hardly older then her.
The day went downhill from there. Everyone seems to think Eleanor and I are practically engaged. I cannot stand her! Mother told me if I did not ask Eleanor to dance, I would be sleeping in the barn. I told her I liked sleeping in the barn. She just gave me a very nasty look. So I asked Eleanor to dance. She did not look happy. Maybe her parents are forcing her to marry me, just as my parents are. But at least she does not appear to be sleepy. Once she yawned and I was terrified that she would fall asleep right then and there, and I would have to kiss her.
I would like to think of myself as a good dancer. I only stepped on her toes about twelve times, and I knew most of the dances. After the dance I was dumping the girl off on her parents when she paused looked at me and said,
“You know, I have never met anyone who knows less about dancing!” I crossed my fingers behind my back, perhaps just perhaps her parents would not want their daughter marrying someone who does not know how to dance. Oh compared to the rest of my brothers, I dance like an angel! Was what I was planning on saying. What actually came out was,
“Oh, um- haha- er thanks- I mean- goodbye!” Then I ran across the room. I cannot believe I just said that. I must look like an idiot! I hate dancing! What a horrible day.
We finally left Princess what is her name's castle, just before midnight. That girl had disappeared, so hooray, I did not have to say goodbye and maybe kiss her hand. Father wanted to leave and get home, which turned out to be a good thing. Our carriage had barely left the castle when there was a loud rumbling sound. The carriage was overturned and one of the horses was killed. I had the bad luck to be sitting next to little sis, she all but burst my ear drums with her screams. Joseph and John climbed out and tried to fix the carriage, but they were to feeble. I was quite glad to get out and ruin my suit by not helping and falling in the mud. There was a lot of queer lights in the sky. Mother stayed in the carriage and was shaking with terror. Everyone else got out and ruined their clothes, because they all wanted to be just like me. Then a debate followed, should we return to our castle or Eleanor's castle? Then I heard a clock strike midnight. This place was giving me the creeps. I voted to go home. Luckily, none of the others, except mother, wanted to stay.
I have been asleep for hours, because of the lack sleep last night. Ugh, dancing! Jerome just dragged me out of bed and told me, I was required to attend supper with the rest of the family! Required? Princes should not be required to do anything! Besides Jaden and James are missing, so of course the whole family will not be present. Dinner conversation revolved around the strange incident last night. If you ask me, that evil fairy was involved again! It was not until after dinner when I was engrossed in hunting for my favorite hunting jacket, that I realized that I should have mentioned the Fairy's threat to me. I also realized that I never told them the truth about Jaden. Well, I will tell them, just as soon as I find that jacket.
Joseph, Jerome and our cousin Kane went out hunting with me today. John did not come because he hates hunting. Kane's mother will not let her son marry anyone but a true princess. She is so obsessed with it, that any girl who shows so much as a passing interest in him, has to undergo a test. Kane would not tell us what the tests were, but he did say no one has passed them. Lucky him. Somehow conversation got switched around to James and Jaden.
“So what happened with James and that drafty old palace?” Kane asks, once we had discussed Jaden's luck in escaping princess Eleanor, “I thought he planned to sell it months ago.”
“Maybe the bats or mice ate him!” Jerome suggested. Jerome is always trying to be funny. But I do not find his sense of humor funny.
“Cursed!” I said, remembering I had forgotten to tell my family about the Fairy's visit the previous night. My dumb relatives looked at me like I had grown a pair of horns.
“Curse what?” Joseph asked after a pause. I rolled my eyes.
“The Fairy!” I said.
“Huh?” they all replied like a bunch of idiot school children. I shook my head and started whistling.
“What did the fairy do?” Kane demanded, “Why do you want us to curse her?”
“Because of the curse!” I said cheerfully.
“So did this fairy curse something?” Jerome asked, “Or do you want us to curse her.” I nodded, then shook my head.
“Who did she curse? Assuming we are talking about the same thing.” Joseph said impatiently.
“What are you babbeling about?” Kane asked.
“Justin is doing a very good job of not explaining anything.” Jerome smirked. I do not see why they cannot calm down and take life as it comes. They never understand anything, which is really annoying.
“James!” I explained. They should have understood now.
“What about him?” they all yell.
“Jaden!” I add. They gape at me, “Eleanor and I.” I continue.
“Brother, I cannot make heads or tails of what you say!” Joseph said in a very blunt voice.
“We are all cursed!” I yell, feeling more then a little annoyed. This time they have disbelief on their faces.
“Why did you not just say so?” Joseph asks after a long silence.
“How do you even know all this?” Kane asks. I could have told them everything already if they did not keep interrupting. It took me until we got back into the great hall at the castle to tell them the whole story. The reason it went so slow was that, they would not stop interrupting me.
Nobody believes me! It is so not fair! Father had to send a servant to that princess's castle to find out if I was telling the truth. He sent another servant to James' palace. Neither has returned yet. So I will sit and sulk in my room until they do.
I left my room today, because I was hungry. The servants still did not come back. I went out to the garden to find Jaden and squeeze him until he owned of to my parents, that he had gotten transformed to avoid marriage. Unfortunately, there was no sign of a frog, toad, lizard or anything that could be Jaden in the garden. The world obviously hates me. My family thinks I am insane. It is so not fair! Why can they not take my word for it? I am obviously a very trustworthy person. What about my simple story would make them think I was insane?
One of the servants came back today. He looked absolutely terrified. He talked or rather babbled on an on about some overgrown park and a lot of sleeping people. I did not like the sound of it. Mother and father had a long conversation about it, which they did not include any of their children in. How annoying! If I am supposed to wake her up, I would like to be in on the plans. But at the moment I will just enjoy a little bit of piece and quiet. The princess is not going anywhere, she can wait.
So much for my wish of being in on the plan. Now I have to go to her castle and try and wake her up. Ugh! Is there no end to injustices. Jerome has decided to go to James' palace and find out what is going on there. Well I guess I will go with him. If anyone protests I will say I am going to go to her castle, just the long way around. The good thing is, that Joseph will not go because he has been making a lot of trips into the black woods. Something there must interest him. When mother asked him to go with Jerome, he said no, because he had to meet a very important lady with twenty foot long hair. Is that not a really lame excuse? Actually, I think the hair was a lot shorter then twenty feet, but that is not the point. The point is that if he or John or Kane does not go with Jerome, I can go. Wait a second, John cannot go either, he has dancing lessons scheduled. Good for him.
Jerome and I set out for James' palace today. Kane was called home, apparently some girl claiming to be a princess had arrived or something silly like that. Jerome talked and talked and talked. Seriously, can her never shut up? He told me I needed confidence and that I had to stop procrastinating and that I should also learn to make a proper conversation. In short, he told me to act my age. The very nerve of him. Why do I need to to talk, when I have a diary to complain in? Besides Jerome does enough talking for the whole family. I never needed to hurry or be confident before, that was always James' duty. I guess I was always his silent shadow. Not a very friendly thought. Anyway I hope James has not changed. He was always smart, maybe he can come up with a plan for me to escape the fairy's wretched curse.
We are almost there, I am so excited that I actually interrupted Jerome. He was surprised, but I had not been listening to him in the first place. Suddenly a crowd of people in peasant clothes went running past. Huh? That is peculiar. They looked scared.
“What is going on?” Jerome says with a frown.
“Lets find out!” I reply. Jerome gives me a funny look. We rode even deeper into the woods and were surprised to see someone in a bright red shirt go limping past at a very fast walk, pursued by a very angry woman with a frying pan.
“Miss Emilee Potts?” Jerome yells. The man escapes and the woman turns towards us. She is indeed our housekeepers daughter. The one that went off to be James' new housekeeper. She stares at us.
“Well, well.” she says, “Is that my name? I had quite forgotten.” How can someone forget their own name? That is so stupid!
I am still in shock. Miss Potts took us to the palace and we found James in a ragged shirt digging in a garden with some girl! Alright that does not sound to outrageous, but first of all James is a prince! Secondly, he hates dirty clothes! Thirdly, the girl was not even that pretty, and James will not so much as talk to a girl who is not beautiful! Fourth, he was listening to the girl instead of doing all the talking! Sixth, the conversation was about the girl! James' favorite topic is himself, that's all he likes to talk about! Seventh- I don't know what the seventh is, but there has to be one somewhere, I think. Oh, he hates getting dirty, all that dirt under his nails- ugh!
To make matters worse, as soon as James saw us he embraced us. James does not do hugs! Then he introduced the girl as Belle, his betrothed! BETROTHED as in getting married! Jerome was struck speechless and nearly fell over. James being the perfect host had Miss Potts show us to rooms and provide us with supper, then this morning he told us about a fairy and a curse. Belle helped brake the curse or something like that. I think he is still under a spell. Otherwise he would never marry her, even if she did help brake the spell. She is just plain ugly!
This place gives me the creeps! It looks like some great war had been fought here. Perhaps James is not so crazy as he sounds. That is the only reason I am glad that I am leaving tomorrow! Yes, I finally am going to Eleanor's castle. I intended to stay a week but, James cornered me and had a man to man talk with me. He actually had me answer questions! It is so peculiar.
“Justin, yesterday Jerome told me about you and the fairy, he says you think you are under some kind of curse.” he said.
“Oh.” I replied, well I thought of a better answer.
“Justin, you cannot just idle away your time here. That girl deserves better! But if you can help her, then do it!” the tone of his voice sounded sharp, more like his old bossy self.
“Better then what?” I asked. I wished he would just get to the point.
“Then you!” he said grimly. Seriously, James can be so mean.
“Oh?” I said again. What else could I say? It was not like I wanted to marry her.
“You have to step forward and shoulder your share of the responsibility! Stop procrastinating! I know that I kind of was well... taking over for you before I came here.” Now I really know there is something wrong with him. “You have to step forward with confidence! That is all you need Justin, confidence! And to speak more quicker when someone speaks to you!” I had the serious urge to tap my forehead, but I restrained myself. He cocked his head, obviously waiting for an answer.
“Oh?” I am beginning to think my short and not to the point answers were a little too short.
“Justin just go and wake your princess, NOW!” James' yell sounded very normal and I began to think that maybe, just maybe he is not mad, reformed maybe, but not mad. Since he usually takes the lead, I guess that means I better reform too. But I better find out what my faults are.
Here is a list of my faults
Um..... maybe I do not talk enough. Let me think... ah... perhaps I am a bit lazy... only a bit mind you. I think I need a little more confidence... not quite so much that I will stand on a stage and sing the national song. I have something against princesses and marrying, but then so do or did all my brothers. These faults are really lame, I am just going to get rid of this list.
What a dreary day! A really really dreary day! Jerome talked on and on about Belle and James, giving his opinion of everyone. He said that he was talking to Henry, James' steward. He said Henry did not remember his name because he had been called Chip for so long. I fail to see why anyone would call a steward Chip. Jerome went on to explain that it was because the first day they had been enchanted, he got into a fight with Miss Potts and she tore a chunk out of his ear. I still fail to see why that would explain the name. Chunk would have been more reasonable. But why would Miss Potts do such a barbaric thing? I think I have begun to ask to many questions in this diary. Oh yes, I was talking about the weather. Well it is dreary and we have been riding through it for a little less then an eternity.
The servant was quite right. Eleanor's castle is surrounded by overgrown trees and huge brambles. No one can get through, not ever! Which is actually good news for me. Jerome took one look at the overgrowth and started babbling about going home.
“No!” I told him. He was not going to just abandon me.
“What good would I be here? After all your precious fairy and you got yourself into this ridiculous mess! The two of you can fix it, I am off home because that is where I want to be, not here helping you trim the hedge! Adieu dear sweet brother! Better start sharpening your pruning sheers!” He said and was gone before I could think of a suitable answer. James was right, I need to answer quicker, when spoken too. Well I guess I will just sit here and wonder what the best thing to do is. It may be a bit boring.
Today I figured out what the best thing to do yesterday, would have been. It would have been to tie up my horses. I mean it would have been a really good idea. Not that I mind wild berries for breakfast, its just that I am not really certain which are the poison berries and which are the ones that make you drop dead. It also took awhile to find a suitable stone to sharpen my sword on. The reason I needed to sharpen my sword is that I do not happen to have a pruning sheers, and since I do not happen to have a pruning sheers I have to use my sword to cut through the brambles. My sword is always dull because I never sharpen it, which is another thing I could have done yesterday. I just read over my last entry and cannot figure out if I am complaining or being sarcastic. Hopefully complaining because I cannot stand sarcastic people, and if I am going to live with only myself for awhile I do not want be sarcastic.
Perhaps I should have spent a little more time hunting for food yesterday, I feel really faint today. Maybe it is the poison berries kicking in. I wish I could die! Luckily I sharpened my sword, now I can do a little hunting. At least I know how to hunt. I wonder if I could make a snare. I am pretty sure I remember how.
My basic- very basic snare I made yesterday caught a rabbit, I was finishing him up today, when Joseph came riding past. He was about a hundred feet away, but he cupped his hands and yelled at me to get up off my hunches and do some work. How could he say that? I am starving! I was just taking a little brake. It is beside the point that I got here three days ago.
I got to thinking about what Joseph said to me yesterday so I vowed I would start work today. And I did. But cutting even a small path through hedge and brambles this thick with a sword is almost impossible. Notice I only said almost. My hands look like a spider web of blood and cuts. Surely there must an easier way of doing it. I have tried swinging my sword in front of me. All that does is knock a few twigs off and brush aside the bramble, but once my sword as passed, the bramble springs back and scratches me. I have also tried swinging my sword like an ax. I nearly chopped off my foot. This is the worst job I have ever had... actually it might be the only job I have ever had.
Seriously, I feel as if I had been cutting all day yesterday, but I only cleared about four feet! Four measly feet! How do the peasants clear woods anyway? I am willing to bet they do not use swords. So now I am starving and getting torn to pieces in a bramble patch, all for a girl I do not give a pence about! Something does not seem right about this! The fairy never said anything bad would happen to me if I did not waken Eleanor. The only thing is that Eleanor will sleep forever, which is completely fine with me, I think. She probably deserves it.
Hungry again! So I went hunting today. But I felt rather stiff and sore.
Back to cutting! I can see the castle gates now, and should not have much further to go. I am starting to feel like I have accomplished something in my life.
Broke through today! I feel like I should have a celebration of some kind, but... I am tired, miserable and covered with multiple scratches. I just want to sink down in my warm bed. Just think, tomorrow I will actually enter the castle. It should like slightly different from before, what with the oversized garden. I collapsed- well took a nap in the courtyard.
The whole place is so quiet, that my own breathing sounds abnormally loud. Then there is the servants and guards, just laying about. Cobwebs are draped over some of them. Others have mice nests in there laps. It looks like no one had lived here for a hundred years. All this dust is making me sneeze too. If I fell asleep, I sure would not let a mouse sleep with me.
Who designs castles? I have seriously been wandering through this castle for twelve hours and still I cannot find the princess. I found the king and the queen unceremoniously draped over there thrones. I found Eleanor's pig baby brother, he must have had his fingers in a bowl of pudding, when he fell asleep, because he was sitting against the leg of a table a pudding bowl on his head. I helped myself to some food, which needed a little dusting before I could eat it. The cook makes excellent, although slightly dusty pastries and they were only slightly stale.
I found a staircase at last! But there was over two hundred tiny steps that just kept going around and around and around. I decided that I really despise steps, they were invented by a monster! But finally when I reached the top I found more doors. Would it be really bad if I sat down and cried? Probably! Guess what was in the first door I tried? Nothing! Guess what was in the next fifty doors? Nothing! Guess what was in the door at the end of the hall? The princess! She was lying on dusty bed. I think she was wearing pink dress. But I was to tired to do anything except drop in a dusty chair next to a spinning wheel and fall asleep. This is a big castle. My ancestors knew how to built a proper castle.
I awoke sore and stiff. The only thing worse then waking up and finding yourself in a creepy girl's room, is awaking up in creepy girl's room with no chance of breakfast, unless you forage for it. Well, as you can imagine, I got the worst. Not to mention the spinning wheel turns itself. It turns and gives me the impression that an invisible woman is sitting there watching me. I left the room in a big hurry, but all the other rooms were just as bad. People sprawled all over the place, snoring, covered with dust and spider webs. I got a bad case of the shivers. Well at least the garden well was not full of dust and I managed to wash some apples and some other kind of mushy green fruit in it.
Well, there is no escaping now. I re-climbed the two hundred steps and went back to her room. I kept telling myself, that one kiss and I could escape. Just one tiny little itty bitty kiss. But I need more motivation then that. Just looking at a dust covered girl, with mice lodging on her bed and covered with spider webs is enough to make me gag, not to mention that I have to kiss her. Did I ever mention that I despise fairies? I mean for real! Their curses are nasty things. I think I will explore the tower, at least the top floors, just so long as I do not have to climb those stupid steps hundreds of times. The room below her room looked like a dungeon. Their was an iron grail in the window, and a skeleton chained to the wall. I am not sure if I want to know what he was tortured for. What I do want to know is, what kind of king makes his daughter sleep above a dungeon? Maybe I should rescue her as soon as possible. The rest of the rooms on the tower were rather boring, nothing in any of them but stools. One had another spinning wheel in it and a pile of straw on the floor. If you ask me, Eleanor's family are strange and a bit insane.
Well, I am back in her room. I even went all the way over to her bed and actually bent over to kiss her, but then a rat as big as my arm popped out from under the pillow and someone started screaming, and I felt dizzy. When the dizziness past as I was clinging to a beam on the first floor of the castle, and I realized that I had been doing the screaming. My heart is still racing. Oh I am not going back into that room for awhile.
I feel so bored and lonely. Usually I listen to my brothers do all the talking, at least I am not alone with them, but here I am alone, unless you count the bodies everywhere. I can hardly count them. You know I am pretty sure the head steward was stealing from the king. He had three bags of coins spilling out of his shirt. I have taken to talking to myself. But since I never get any replies it does not help much.
I have found some motivation. A library full of dusty leather bound books. I found Jade's favorite series, the Pendragon Saga and carried the first three books up to her room. The stories are full of ordinary people doing extraordinary things and becoming famous. I am a little bit higher then an ordinary person and I cannot even kiss a stupid girl, when the heroes in the books would rescue damsels from all sorts of horrible and terrifying creatures. Well, just as soon as I finish this chapter I shall wake her up. Why do they call girls damsels anyway? Girl sounds just fine to me.
I fell asleep over my book last night and quite forgot to kiss her. I guess I better do it now. But when I went over to her and saw how gross she was, well... I almost ran off again. But then I decided, if a blacksmith's son could become a knight, a widow's son could plant a giant beanstalk, and a boy could pull a sword from a stone, I could clean a few cobwebs off of a girl. So I ran back down to the kitchen and found a bucket. I filled the bucket with water and collected a table cloth from the great hall. I once saw a Magician pull a cloth out from under a table full of food without knocking anything over. But I am sure no one will mind the soup and wine spilled all over the floor once I wake everyone up. Well, I washed her face, and killed the rats nesting in her bed. But then the bed was covered with blood and cuts from my sword and the dead rats. So I dragged her off the bed. I draped her over the chair behind the spinning wheel and took the sheets off. Since their was no maid hanging around I tossed them out the window and kicked the mice down the steps. Then I laid the blanket on the bed, I figure she does not need a blanket, since the cold will hardly awaken her. Then I dragged her back to the bed and put her back on it. Now her hair is a mess, but I am not about to fix that. I already cleaned her off. I am to tired to kiss her tonight. One more night is not going to kill her.
Ugh!!!! Why am I cursed? It is so not fair! I woke up this morning ready to finish everything off and she was completely disgusting again. What happened to my hard work? Is this some fool's idea of a joke? Well I can only say it is in very poor taste. Well I went back down to the well for more water. That is when I found the armory. I have never been in one before. A servant always brought me my weapons. Now I find it much more entertaining to collect my own weapons of choice. I found a beautiful longbow. Maybe I can use it to go hunting once this sorry business is over. Then I found a much better sword then my own. Considering the generous deed I am doing for the family I think they owe me the sword and the bow, not to mention the quiver full of fine arrows.
Drat! I was so busy in the armory that I missed another whole day. It is really beginning to bother me that I can be so easily distracted. Well, I collected my bucket and opened the side door to go outside, but to their was a very tall lady dressed in black with black hair and a very pale face. Her lips were redder then blood and she carried some kind of ugly brown rodent, I think it was a deformed rabbit, in her arms.
“Oh hello my dear, I did not realize that their was anyone home.” she said in a high pitched sickening voice.
“Er- no.” I cried like an idiot, “I mean yes, they are sleeping.” I think I prefer it when no one can here me.
“Well, you should not be awake sweat heart.” she sneered, “I will have to kill you!” Let me tell, a fellow does not want to here that from the first person he has talked to in days. I slammed the door in her face and ran for the stairs.
I hid in the kitchens all day and night. How exactly do you fight a woman? I cannot kill her, it would be against my code of honer! Which I probably already broke when I did not waken the princess at once! Besides, I am pretty sure she is a fairy. Would it be a crime to kill a fairy woman? Is it the same thing? I hope not, because it is against my private code to stand around and get killed. Well, this morning, I made a dash for the tower. I am pretty sure it will be the most defensible spot. That “woman” creature was waiting for me. I had to run- well run is putting it simply, I had to do nothing short of flying for my life. When a creepy woman in a black dress chases someone, it is a good idea to run. But when she is shooting flames out of the mouth of a rodent and sparks from her own eyes, then you have to do more then run. Probably screaming your head off helps.
Really? I am back in the princess's room again. I hardly noticed going up those millions of steps last night. I was too busy worrying about my life, then barricading myself into the room. I put everything in front of the door, except the bed and the spinning wheel. Even if I was hiding from a woman, I could not use another woman as a piece of barricade. I also will not touch the spinning wheel. It is the most gruesome thing ever.
It is rather boring in here. Nothing to do but starve to death, while I wait for the crazy hag of a fairy to smash through the door and turn me into a pile of ashes. I should really get paid for this. I mean a lot. I could kiss the girl, but I doubt she would appreciate the situation. She will probably just faint away and then I would not even be able to wake her up, if we had to make a hasty departure. How long have I been sitting here? It feels like years and years. Wait a second, was it even ten minutes?
My barricade started giving away before the sun started to even started rising. Do fairies ever rest? Well, now was the time to take that hasty exit. But the only way out is through the window, and let me assure you, it is a long way down. Nevertheless, it will have to do. Maybe princesses are trained in the way of climbing down towers without the help of a ladder or very long hair. It would be a shame if they have not been, because then all my work would be for nothing. She had to go out. If she does not know how to climb, I am afraid she would die.
Well, I kissed her. Hmm... maybe it was not quite as bad as I thought. Just a little strange and awkward. Nothing seemed to happen for a minute, then just as the door and the barricade went flying across the room, she sat up and stared around. Seriously, what is wrong with princesses? Her room looks like it has been unoccupied in a thousand years. An evil fairy with a maniacal rodent is shooting fire everywhere, and she looks at me and slaps me so hard that I fall over! Really? I am beyond disgusted! What an ungrateful brat! To make matters worse, the fairy witch singed the whole top of my head. OUCH! What is a fellow supposed to do, when he is caught between two angry ladies? I am not sure what most men would do, but I am pretty sure it is not grabbing a girl off of a bed and stuffing her out of a tower window! In fact I am pretty sure, nobody would do that. Well, guess what I did? Yes, I threw her out the window. Or tried to do it anyway.
She hung onto the ledge and screamed that an insane lunatic was trying to kill her. Insane? Lunatic? She could not possibly be talking to me? Maybe if I remembered that I could talk to someone else other then myself, I might have been able to explain. But I was forced to abandon the girl, hanging out the window and dodge my other problem. A fire fairy! As I said before, one does not simply fight a woman, so I simply threw something at her. The first thing that came in handy. The spinning wheel! The nasty thing sliced through my hand as I threw it. The witch blasted it, to pieces. Good riddance. But I did not wait to find out what happen next. I scrambled out the window. Luckily the whole tower was covered with vines, I guess it is supposed to be a hundred years worth of vines. The princess tried to slap me again, but luckily for me she seemed more interested in hanging on, then actually hitting me.
“Climb!” I said. It was actually nice to be able to talk to another human being, even though we were hanging to the outside of a tower, with an angry fire fairy blazing away at us.
“What?” she yelled. Are princesses supposed to yell? “You just kidnapped me, and through a spinning wheel at an old woman, and you expect me to-”
“Old woman?” I retorted, “More like insane witch!”
“You are the insane one!” she screamed. The witch intervened then, by appearing at the window, and grabbing Eleanor's wrists. I hung onto the vines with my right hand, which also happened to be my injured one, and drew my sword with my left hand. I forgot my knightly code and whacked at the witches hands. She screamed and let go, I was forced to drop my sword and grab Eleanor's arm, before she plunged to her death. She kept screaming at me to let go of her. Are all women so ungrateful? Last time I saw him, James said that it was just our imagination about women being ungrateful. Well, I totally do not believe that. Woman are ungrateful!
It took some nasty burns and ripping vines, for Eleanor to see sense and start climbing. But I wish she would hold her tongue. She jabbered as we climbed. Which was annoying, especially since our “friend” the witch was burning the vines and we were practically climbing a burning ladder.
“Is it just my imagination or would it be more intelligent to go down?” she jabbered.
“Shut up and climb!” I growled.
“But what do you intend to do? Sit on the sloping roof of a tower until it falls down?” she continued jabbering. Seriously, do women ever shut up? About twenty minutes later, I could see what she was trying to pull together enough brains to say. We were sitting on the sloping roof of a tower, surrounded by flames with no chance of going up or down! Besides that, my only weapon was a bow and a quiver half full of arrows. I am not even sure I could use it, especially since my hand was bleeding all over the place. The climb had done nothing to help it.
I am seriously starving. That is the worst of my problems. The other problems are that I am sitting on a sloping roof of an oversized tower, with no chance of rescue. An insane witch is keeping me here with a nice blaze around the tower, an insane princess who seems to think this is all my fault is with me jabbering away, giving me a headache, and my hand has swollen up and I can barely move the fingers. Spinning wheels should be banished. Actually, come to think about it, I have never seen a spinning wheel before this whole princess mess, maybe they already were banished.
“So idiot, do you have a plan?” Eleanor demands, giving me a nasty look. My is she impatient, we have only been up here one whole day and night.
“Why do I need a plan?” I retort?
“Because, you kidnapped me then got a fairy angry with us!” she snapped her eyes blazing.
“Excuse me, but I just rescued you!” I growl.
“Rescued me?” her eyebrows were raised up so high, I was surprised that they did not just go clean off her face. “You threw me out of a tower, after you entered my chamber without permission! What have you done with my guards?”
“Left 'em snoring where I found them!” I informed her.
“Snoring? What are you talking about?” she demands.
“Apparently you were under a curse!” I told her with great patience, “Some stupid fairy told me that you would prick your finger and would not wake up until I kissed you! Everyone else decided to sleep with you!” Eleanor stared at me, and I had the uncomfortable feeling that maybe I should have broken it to her in gentler terms. After all she was just a girl, hardly more then a child.
When I looked over the side of the tower past the fire, I could see other people getting up. Everyone was waking up. I hoped that meant we would be rescued. I sat back and waited to be rescued, because what else could I do. Suddenly Eleanor let out a bloodcurdling scream. I was very disturbed. My heart started pounding and I jumped to my feet, grabbing my bow and an arrow.
“What is it?” I yelled. She pointed. I wished I had stayed sitting. Apparently our fairy witch friend had some kind of shape shifting power. Because, she had jumped out of the tower window and morphed into a dragon. Not a big one, only about as wide as the tower, and about half as tall, so more like twenty-five feet tall, totally not a problem. Everything grew blurry and somebody started screaming. Someone else started screaming for silence. Then I realized that it was me screaming and clamped my mouth shut.
“Honestly?” Eleanor cried, “Now it will have no trouble finding us.” She was right. The dragon witch fairy flew straight at us, with one obvious attention in its mind.
“Do something!” Eleanor screamed, “You are supposed to be my prince charming, while save me- please.” Did she honestly expect me to do something again? I already saved her once. I fitted my arrow to the string of my bow and fired. I yelled in pain as the string stung my injured hand. The dragon shot up over the tower in the obvious attempt to avoid my terrible shot. As the tail went whipping past, I grabbed it with my free hand, which also happened to be my injured hand. I really did have the worst luck ever. I bit back a scream of pain. My first intention was to drop down to safety but then I realized how far away the top of the tower already was and changed my mind. There was only one way to go. Upwards.
Still clutching my bow, I awkwardly started to climb the tail. The witchy dragon lashed at her own side, in the attempt to get rid of me. I dropped the bow and hung on. I slammed into her side and saw spiders, spinning wheels and toads dancing in my head. It was painful to say the least. But I hung on. The tail lashed out again, this time I was ready. I used the momentum of the swinging tail to hurl myself forward. I caught the side of the dragon and hoisted myself onto her back. The dragon plunged downwards. I clutched at the pointy things on her back. I will have to admit that I was shaking in terror. She did three rolls in the air, but I hung on. Then she evened out. I stood up and took and arrow out of my quiver. Then I slammed it into her head. A horrible shattering roar filled the air, and we shot downwards. The last thing I remembered was the tower drawing near with terrifying speed.
I awoke to find myself tied down in a bed. Well actually I was not tied, more like bandaged, but it felt like I was tied. There was a lot of people in the room. I recognized Eleanor's parents, and Jerome. What was he doing here? I was rather relieved to see him. But I did not see Eleanor. I cold feeling washed over me. Yesterday seemed a bit hazy to me and I wondered if the dragon had killed her. I forced myself to sit up. Jerome turned.
“So the prince charming has awaken at last.” he smirked, “Well, well-”
“Shut up! Where is Eleanor?” I snapped.
“Oh sir you are so brave.” the queen gushed, “Your princely brother was just telling us how you saved us.” I felt like gagging. I had done nothing except be lazy and I did not appreciate flattering praise.
“Where is Eleanor?” I asked again.
“When you are stronger, she can come in and give her humble thank yous.” the queen said. I scowled. I did not want humble thank yous. I wanted to make sure she was alright, although I was not quite sure why.
“If I am not strong enough to see her, I am most certainly not strong enough to see you.” I said dryly.
“Wha-?” Jerome cried and his mouth dropped open.
“But-?” the queen gaped.
“I shall fetch my daughter at once.” the king said with a smirk, “Everyone else, out!”
“But-?” the queen said again.
“What happens next is none of your business and entirely between Prince Justin and Eleanor.” the king said stiffly, then he took his wife's arm and directed her out of the room. Jerome grinned.
“That is telling 'em brother!” he smirked then he ushered everyone else out of the room. I lay down again. My head was beginning to spin and I felt like going to sleep.
“Your highness?” a girlish voice said. I Jumped. My head banged against the headrest and once more I saw a collection of objects dancing around my head.
“Wha-?” I growled. Then I looked up. Eleanor was standing in the doorway looking at me. I had never really paid much attention to her before, but right then and there I realized that she was a beautiful young woman. I felt my face turning red.
“You called me?” she demanded, sounding more like her old self.
“I-I just wanted to make sure that the dragon did not eat you and waste all of my efforts.” I blurted out. She raised one eyebrow.
“Justin you are a mess.” she said, “You jumped on a dragon's back, killed it with an arrow then smashed into a wall, and you worry about me.” I felt offended. She was supposed to be greatful.
“But I saved your life.” I said sulkily.
“After endangering it in the first place!” she snapped.
“Blast you!” I growled and scrambled off the bed. Immediately a concerned look crossed her face.
“No, please do not get up.” she cried.
“Why not?” I snapped, “I want to go home!” I moved towards the door feeling a little shaky.
“Must you?” she asked. I glanced at her face, it was expressionless. I hesitated. Did she want me to stay?
Suddenly there was a flash of light and my horrible stalker fairy tormenter appeared. In one hand she held a glittering wand. Anger washed over me. So she was back to ruin everything again.
“Get out of here!” I yelled, “You just have to torture-”
“Justin, she is one of my fairy godmothers!” Eleanor cried. I groaned. A sure way to not impress a girl was to insult her godmother, fairy or otherwise.
“Justin, it is about time you stepped up and did something for yourself.” the fairy said smoothly, “Your family only decides to act if they think they are cursed. If they think they are getting something out of the deal!”
“You turned James into a beast?” I yelled, “And Jaden into a toad?”
“I did what I had to do!” she said, “But honestly Justin if you had not woken Eleanor up, someone else would have some time in the future. I just told you that so you would do it. You needed to do something like that.” I seriously felt like killing something. That something preferably being a fairy. Not just any old fairy. That fairy!
“So I do not have to marry Eleanor now?” I demanded in a low voice.
“No.” she said with a long sigh, “Your wish come true!”
“What?” Eleanor cried, “What is going on here? Why can he not marry me?” I grabbed her hand in my bandaged one.
“Away with meddling fairies! We can make our own decisions!” I yelled, then I turned towards the princess, “Princess, do you want to get married?”
“So you decided to-” the fairy began, sounding overly smug in my ears.
“Hush!” Eleanor said and kissed me.
To Be continued with
The Diary of a Frog Prince