One Royalty, Two Women, One Story

3 Apr

By Dexter Hill-Schmick

This was probably the most exciting and important day of Princess Lilia’s life. She carefully put on her silver, silk dress that her governess had made for her. The pearls of white that strung her sleeves and skirt jingled as she placed the diamond tiara on her head.

She was then jolted by her jolly, plump governess, Diane, bursting through the door. “Tomorrow’s your big day!” she exclaimed. “You will marry Prince Philip, and everyone is so excited. Oh my goodness, you look like you’ve seen a ghost! Open the window and take off your wedding dress. It’s late and you need your beauty sleep.”

Reluctantly, Princess Lilia took off the dress and climbed into bed. “Good night, Diane,” she whispered.

“Good night, darling,” Diane replied. And with that, she closed the door.

Princess Lilia lay drowsily on her bed. She had almost reached the shores of sleep when she heard a CREAK! She waited a while, and then got out of bed. She slipped on her fuzzy slippers and a bathrobe over her silky pajamas, which were as soft as a lamb’s wool. She wound her hand around a candle on her night tabel. Princess Lilia silently scouted the dark room. When she did not see anything unusual, she said out loud in a soft voice, “It must’ve been Richie.” What she did not know was that Richie the cat was sleeping peacefull with Diane, and that a stranger was creeping up behind her. Before Princess Lilia had time to react, a cloth with a sleeping potion was shoved near her nose and mouth. She felt herself slump into darkness.

Princess Lilia was awakened by the feel of something cool and moist on her forehead and the cold, damp floor beneath her. The air was crisp and smelled of stone, and a bitter taste of blood lingered in her mouth. When she automatically sat up to survey her strange surroundings, a cold cloth fell from her head.

“Rest child,” said a voice from the corner of what looked like a cell in the dungeons. A magician dressed in long purple robes trimmed in green appeared out of nowhere. “So, do you feel any better?” he asked. “Forgive me for forgetting to introduce myself. I’m not very used to being proper. My name is Nober.”

Princess Lilia then introduced herself: “I am Lilia, Princess Lilia. I was sleeping when I was kidnapped by someone or something.”

“My dear child,” said Nober. “It is clear that you do not know about Fiona.”

“Who’s Fiona?”

“Fiona is your twin sister. She was cursed by a swamp hag with a dark heart, so your parents put her up for adoption. She probably felt jealous of your royalty and tried to take your place.”

“And today’s my wedding!” Princess Lilia gasped.

“Worry not!” Nober cried in a triumphant voice.

With a flick of his wand, a snake appeared. It squeezed through the crack at the base of the door and, using one sharp fang, it picked the lock and opened the door. It hissed in a sharp, metallic hiss, “Go!”

Once the cell was open, Princess Lilia felt a rush of excitement to be free. However, a series of “proper” thoughts rushed into her mind. “I must walk poised,” she thought. “I must keep my chin up and stare directly ahead.”

“Hurry up!” boomed the magician, and as if reading her thoughts he said, “We have no time to be proper! Now run as fast as you can.”

“But I mustn’t ruin my heeled shoes,” Princess Lilia complained.

“Begone with your shoes!” cried the magician, waving his hand. Her flashy, purple shoes disappeared as quick as a wink.

“Ew, my feet are touching the dirty, slimy floor,” thought Princess Lilia. She delicately picked up her dress and began to run. Then, she ran up the steps to the parlor.

Meanwhile, in the parlor, Fiona sat chatting with Prince Philip. “So, Lilia,” he said. “Are you excited about tonight?”

“You can bet your sweaty socks I am,” Fiona said, a malicious grin spreading across her face.

“I-I’m g-g-glad,” stammered Prince Philip, shocked at the language he’d just heard.

At that moment, the door burst open. Princess Lilia stumbled through the doorway.

“You! What are you doing here?!” shouted Fiona.

“I came to take my fright place as princess,” retorted Lilia, glancing at Prince Philip, who looked so confused he might faint.

“I won’t allow it,” Fiona stated firmly, and she dove at Princess Lilia. Before Fiona had time to cause any more harm, pain shot through her arm. When she glanced down, she saw the snake from Nober’s cell entwined around her arm.

“I’ve been bitten by a snake!” Fiona cried.

“Call in the doctor,” demanded Princess Lilia, as Fiona ran out of the room.

“Looks to me as if you finally found your courage after all these years,” said Princess Philip, no longer confused about who was his bride. “Come on, our wedding will be starting soon.”

A few days later, Diane burst into the parlor where King Philip and Queen Lilia sat reading. “I have good news. Your twin had to have her arm removed, but she did not survive the surgery.”

The End


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