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How does a Princess go about getting the man of her dreams? And is she really asking for too much if she needs gentleness and some goodness?
One of the top 5 entries for November’s Muse of the Month writing theme, with the cue “The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!” from Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility.
She was special because being a Princess means you are above the common-folk, you are blue blood. But it also makes those tricky decisions like love even tougher. You can’t just go and fall in love. Everyone is watching. You can’t just ask a guy, “Want to catch up over a coffee?” Everyone comments. You make headlines even when it took a healthy dose of your guts, three cups of coffee and blinding momentary insanity.
The war with the neighbouring country had reduced the number of suitors. And she was one of the few single females left. All her friends were married to guys they claimed they loved. Normal guys they’d hung around with by the lake or in the garden, gone on couple sorties and few had married their childhood crush. She was surrounded by fairytales, but she wasn’t in one. Last year, as she watched her cousin get married to a ‘chosen’ boy she knew arranged marriages was just not her thing. It was terribly unromantic! Marriage itself loses its romance, but at least in the beginning, she’d reasoned, it should be filled with roses and copious amounts of fluttering!
There were just 10 days left for yet another birthday. And her mother, the Queen, had said she would then be ‘down the anthill’; a common term for females who never really got their guy. Dire circumstances called for dire solutions. What can I do now, she wondered? She had to find the best mate without her mother’s interference but she couldn’t wait for that ideal mate to just fly into her life. It didn’t happen like that for her community. She paused under the tree thinking, when WHOOSH! She had an idea.
She would run a competition and marry the man who won! The first idea she came up with was called “Wake me Up.” The scientists of her Kingdom would put her to sleep, though this time with a needle and not a spindle. An advertisement would go out the very next day with the main broadcaster of the Kingdom. Then she would wait, figuratively, in her sleep-induced state, for her mate to wake her up. But she wondered what would happen if no one came? Suppose she never woke up. Ok, that wouldn’t work.
How about “Climb up to me”? She would be kept in a tower in the middle of the sea and the soul who braved the odds—the winds actually—and reached her would be her saviour. It would mean only the strongest and bravest made their way to her and rescued her. But wait, she didn’t want to be rescued. That was so archaic—the whole ‘damsel in distress’ deal! And she didn’t even want a male who thought he needed to rescue anyone.
She thought a little harder. Went back to her childhood and thought about her favourite stories. Yes, she could run a competition called “Kiss and Tell.” Each state would need to bring forth their smartest, most handsome and dapper frogs. She would then give each of them a peck on their cheeks, she had specified cheeks because she couldn’t imagine kissing an army of frogs on their lips… Yuck, totally gross, plus the mechanics of it would be rather tough! Of course, the one that transformed would be her soulmate. As the idea formed in her head, she knew this was it. Growing up the ‘Princess and the Frog’ was her favourite story and it gave the power right back to her! It was her touch that transformed the Prince. Oh, it was so romantic, she swooned just thinking about it.
Her mother happened to be going by at that very moment, and seeing the twinkle in her daughter’s eyes asked, “What’s up?” She told her mother the plan!
“Hmmm… I do like the idea and you should find someone, especially if every state has to present their best. But darling, aren’t you forgetting an important thing? Frogs eat dragonflies! Even the best of the male species won’t pause to give you a chance! They’ll just pounce.”
“Oh…” the Princess sighed, “The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never find a mate whom I can really love. Though I don’t really require much, just a little patience, goodness and gentleness, is that too much to ask?”
Joining a heart image via Shutterstock
bhavani is an independent fiction and non-fiction writer.
She has crafted over 20 heritage
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