The secret

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

Submitted: July 19, 2018

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Submitted: July 19, 2018




Once upon a time there was a beautiful princess who possessed everything money could buy. Her father the king doted on his beautiful daughter and indulged her every whim. She had servants, riches clothes and many friends who all tried to see to it, that the princess’s life was filled with interest and purpose; but despite their efforts, the beautiful princess was deeply unhappy and never laughed. Perhaps worst of all her unhappiness was infectious it contaminated all the people she came into contact with; it seemed to permeate the whole court whenever she was present.  The beautiful princess seemed dissatisfied with everything. There was always something better or different she would say; find it for me, but try as they might, her friends, courtiers and servants could never match her expectations. Things came to such a pass, that everyone was frightened to suggest anything in case it made the princess more unhappy 

 She wore sadness like an overcoat. The king and queen were so worried about their only child that they scoured the kingdom for doctors and psychiatrists who might cure the princess’s malaise. Great rewards were offered; a king’s ransom was promised to anyone who could make the princess laugh. Doctors came and doctors went each with a diagnosis and predicted cure, but none could help the princess; she just sunk deeper into despair. One day a young man arrived at the castle carrying a small box: the youth, for that is what he was; partitioned the king for an audience. Not knowing what the youth wanted the king was reluctant to see him; but when the young man told the king’s servant he was here to cure the princess the king immediately summoned him to the audience chamber. As the young man entered, he bowed low and the king noticed his courtiers and the queen gasp; it was as if the room was filled with light and everyone’s spirit had been lifted. As the youth stood there it struck the king that this was the most handsome man he’d ever seen. He was tall, and glowed with health; he had golden curls and his eyes were as blue as the ocean. The young man’s clothes were of good quality but rustic; his tunic was leather and his hose were made from a fine tweed material. As the king looked on; he noticed for the first time that the youth was carrying a small golden casket about the size of a large jewel box. What is your name said the king and how do you propose to cure my daughter. My name sire is not important; but I believe it possible to make your daughter happy. Many wise and dedicated men have tried said the king; why should I trust you. Sire I propose a small demonstration; the youth then asked all the courtiers to stand around the walls so that he stood alone in the centre of the large room. He beckoned to the glum looking princess who was seated next to her mother, to join him. As she walked towards the young man, her demeanour was that of a spoilt child who has lost its favourite toy. For some moments she stood next to the handsome youth looking as though she would burst into tears. He turned; and asked her to look into the golden casket as he gently opened the lid; there was a sudden murmur around the room. No one was close enough to see what was in the box; but the faint light which emanated from the inside was clear to all. Just as if the sun had risen, the glum princess began to smile; her beauty illuminated the whole room and for a few minutes the king and his courtiers were overcome with joy. Nobody had ever seen the princess smile and the surprised look on the king’s face caused many of the courtiers to giggle. No sooner had the princess smiled; than the young man closed the lid of the box and the laughter in the princesses eyes vanished in a moment. Her countenance took on the mournful look of a girl who’s lost. How did you do that demanded the king; can you make my daughter laugh? I believe I can said the youth but my price may be too high even for a king. Name your fee said the king! I claim the hand of the princess in marriage said the youth and I must spend seven days alone with the princess here in the castle.

Could the king trust this handsome stranger with no name? A young commoner who could bring ruin to his daughter and the kingdom; what was he to do? At last the king agreed and for seven days nothing was heard from the beautiful princess and the handsome youth. When they did emerge from the princesses’ quarters, no one could quite believe the transformation; the princess had laughter in her eyes and happiness in her smile; she was a vision of contentment;she’d been transformed to a woman who was able to laugh at herself and the world. The court was agog; the king and queen were delighted and the kingdom rejoiced. A great wedding ceremony was organised and the handsome youth was made a prince by the grateful king. The couple lived happily ever after. They had many children who made the king and queen the happiest of royal grandparents; but whenever the king would ask his son in law what was in the golden casket; the handsome youth always smiled and made the same reply; that sire is a secret!

© Copyright 2018 Peter Piper. All rights reserved.

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