Rib-bit-tone Pondhopper (2)

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic


Ah, let us find out what happened to Rib-bit-tone after the "POOF". I doubt that it will be what you might think.

Submitted: May 05, 2018

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Submitted: May 05, 2018

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Poof!!! --- I guess Ann was right; just one quick kiss changed Rib-bit-tone Pondhopper into a man.

 

"Are you the Prince of Thyme?" Ann asked as she stepped back a few steps and braced herself against a tree. It looked as if she was about to faint.

The man that stood before her was in his early twenties and somewhat handsome, in a ruff and tumble sort of way.

As the young man stood there he began to look around, as if he was disoriented and unable to remember.

Suddenly a smile came upon his lips and he stated, "No, I am not Rodney, Prince of Thyme, I am Daniel, a Duke. I am Rodney's best friend, traveling companion, and cousin; we are as brothers."

"Well where is the Prince?" questioned Ann, her eyes intensely staring at Daniel.

Daniel thought for awhile, and then stated, "It is coming back to me now. I was accompanying Rodney on a journey, but the reason is still vague.

It was a very hot day so Rodney and I stopped in the shade of meadow-pond to get out of the sun. We were resting there when a fearsome dragon landed in the meadow and began drinking from the pond.

After some time the dragon saw us hiding in the bushes and it asked us what we were doing there. We briefly explained, but the dragon wanted more information, like who we were and where we were going.

Such questions by a dragon were not normal and we both suspected that the dragon was not a dragon at all; so we refused to answer.

Very quickly the dragon grew angry and attacked us.

Normally we would have easily killed the beast, but this was no ordinary dragon, no, we soon discovered that we were dealing with the Dark Witch, in disguise.

She could not defeat us by conventional means so she cast a spell in our direction and fled.

Ann, still looking confused, asked Daniel, "And what of Rodney, the Prince of Thyme?"

Daniel replied, "Rodney and I were at the meadow-pond together until a crow carried me away. By luck alone I escaped the crow and was returning to the meadow-pond when I came upon you.

Thanks to you I am myself again, now I can travel faster and should reunite with my cousin in just a few days."

Ann thought and then replied, "It is late in the day. Come, there is an empty Huntsman's Cabin nearby where you can bathe, have a good meal, and sleep in comfort.

I will return to the castle and secure transportation and provisions; we can get a fresh start early in the morning. By horse we should reach the pond much sooner."

Daniel looked surprised and said, "I do not think that you should go on this journey, my Lady, there could be dangers waiting. I will go and fetch Rodney and bring him to you."

"No Daniel, you must take me with you," Ann insisted. "As soon as you point out the right toad, that being Rodney, I shall kiss him and then I will have what I have been searching for."

Daniel thought about the proposal and remarked, "As a toad I could easily tell one toad from another, but now that I am myself, well, I do not know if I will recognize Rodney any longer."

"All the more reason I should go with you," Ann stated. "After all, how many toads could you possibly carry? You might not bring them all. If I am with you then you need not bring any toads to me. When we reach the Meadow-pond I will kiss as many toads as it takes, I will kiss them all if I have to. Rodney must be found!"

So it was settled and Daniel stayed in the Huntsman's Cabin while Ann left for the castle.

Bright and early the next morning Ann arrived at the cabin with a small wagon, provisions, and one horse. Daniel was ready and waiting. 

Soon the two were making their way along the King's Road in the direction of the meadow-pond.

The trip took longer than Ann thought it should, but the two were having such a good time traveling together, talking about various subjects, and sharing information about their lives.

They were getting along very well and the Duke seemed to be a wealth of information for this young woman's curious nature.

***

 

When the two arrived at the Meadow-pond, Daniel began calling out, "Dangerfield, where are you Dangerfield!"

Ann grew angry and yelled at Daniel, "Who are you calling? We are looking for Rodney, not Dangerfield! Is this some kind of joke?"

"Calm down," Daniel stated, in an effort to calm her fears, "I am Daniel in this body, but as a toad I was Rib-bit-tone Pondhopper.

The same goes for Rodney, in his toad’s body he is Dangerfield Mudskipper. So we must call him by the name he relates to as a toad, or he may not answer."

Ann thought for a moment and replied, "Well that makes perfect sense."

So Ann began calling out and wandering in and among the bushes, “Dangerfield Mudskipper, come out, come out, wherever you are! Do come out of hiding Dangerfield, I am here to ....”

Ann was confronted by a young man, he had the tip of his half-sword pressed against her chest! He continued the pressure, with Ann backing away all the while. Eventually Ann was pinned against the trunk of a willow tree; she had nowhere else to retreat to.

"What is the meaning of this?" Ann demanded to know.

The young man laughed and replied, "You are not fooling anyone, Witch of a thousand disguises. I warn you to keep your hands to your side and refrain from any sudden moves. I have many reasons to run you through, so your slightest movement will surely do the trick!

Then Ann asked, "Tell me, why is this Prince not a Toad. And how did you know that I am the Witch?"

Daniel replied, "I will answer your question if you answer mine first. Why were you looking for the Prince?"

Ann replied, "For a King's ransom you fool! I need Rodney as himself and unharmed if I am to receive the ransom from his Father. For the safe return of Rodney I was to receive a chest of gold, an estate and lands in the mountains, and a written promise to be left alone.

Thinking Rodney was transformed into a Toad, I had no choice but to search for him in the only way possible.

I could not remember which pond we did battle at. My memory is not what it once was, 247 years takes its toll on ones faculties. So I had to search every pond in this region and kiss every toad as I went.

Now, I have answered your questions, so now it is your turn to tell me how it was that the Prince is not a Toad. And how in the world did you know that Ann was not Ann?"

David replied first with, "Only the Witch would have thought that both of us were changed into Toads. She cast the spell and hurled it at us, but she left in such a hurry that she never saw what actually happened."

Then the Prince continued by saying, "When I was a young boy I was schooled by my Father's Wizard. One of the things he taught me was that water acts as a mirror and deflects spells cast, so I dived into the pond as soon as I saw the spell being cast. But David was caught by surprise and was transformed.

Soon after that encounter the crow came and carted David away, I thought that I had lost my cousin forever.

But knowing David's resourcefulness, I decided to stay at the meadow-pond for one month. If he survived, then I knew he would return to the last place we had seen one another.

As for your mistakes, they were many.  Only we three knew of our first encounter at the Meadow-pond. So how could Ann have heard of the Dark Witches spell unless she was there?"

Then Daniel finished the answers by saying, "Your worst mistake was that you were using outdated information. There is no Lady in waiting named Ann, not at Two-Willows. I know because I am Daniel, Duke of Two-Willows, and I married Ann five years ago.

Suddenly, Ann tried to escape and the Prince did as he had promised, he ran her through!

But as he pulled the half-sword from her bloodless body, the body just vanished.

All of a sudden the dragon materialized and was hovering over them! They could hear the Old Witch Cackling from within the dragon’s body and the disgusting sound echoed off of the nearby hillsides.

The Dark Witch cried out, "Never use a real body when working in close quarters with the enemy, or while kissing frogs, (Yuck!).

And thank you for the information, I will remember my mistakes and I shall not repeat them when I come for each of you in the future."

"Now!" the Prince yelled.

The Dark Witch yelled back, "No, you fool, not now, in the future!"

When the Prince yelled a second time a volley of poison-tipped arrows darted from the trees. Not one arrow missed its mark and the Dragon fell to the ground in a heap.

Then Rodney's Father, the King, and seven of his hunting companions ran out of the bushes and to the place where the Witches body was; that is when they doused the body with whale oil and set it on fire.

 

"I see you got word to your Father," David said to the Prince.

The Prince smiled and replied, "Well of course, you know how Father loves a good witch-hunt."

 

 

D. Thurmond / JEFalcon

05-02-2018


© Copyright 2018 D. Thurmond, aka, JEF. All rights reserved.

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