The Runaway Bride
Prince Leo was afflicted. The King had found a bride for him. He was quite certain that the beauty of his fiancée, Sasha, the Princess from Sasha Empire was exaggerated by the delegates of the foreign country. “Ugly or not, you are marrying this girl, ugly or not!” his internal voice spoke his apprehensions. So he was staying numb with desperation at the window in full armor.
This glorious knight couldn’t even imagine how to attend to the needs of a woman. So this was the day, which would change everything. A warrior, a great warrior, was about to become a family man, an ordinary family man.
A tea-lover, a great tea-lover had to say forever goodbye to the cedar trees covered in snow, in the taiga of the Great Sasha Empire… There she loved to ride her personal horse Thunder, galloping between the trees, and that pacified her very bright and always agitated mind. It was the last thing she did before embarking on the ship which was to cross the Great Silent Lake and anchor far, far away from everything she loved.
When she stepped on that foreign land, her eyes filled with tears. How could her stepmother sell her like this for a trade contract with the oldest country on Alpha Gem? She had so many candidates where she lived, and she was really fond of some of the pure-blooded princes, she had grown up with. She was a fascinating young woman, flirt came naturally to her, and her stepmother, the Queen was jealous of all the attention young Sasha was getting. So her stepmother did the best she could to leave Sasha without options.
When she was received in the harbor of the capital of the Dragon Dynasty, tears like pearls were falling down her rosy cheeks. “I will go away from here.” – she resolved in her heart. “I will become a recluse.” Soon she was trotting in front of her companions on the most docile mare the Dragon Dynasty could provide. They couldn’t know the princess was a great rider.
It was a land of warriors – a standoffish, infertile land… People said that the inhabitants of the Dragon Dynasty saw burping as a sign of gratitude and satisfaction, and a compliment to the chef. They were said to spit loudly in the streets. They were so rude, they even refused compliments. They didn’t even have teaspoons and ate all their meals with chopsticks. Courteous Sasha was appalled that her fiancée would be a rough and unsophisticated person, of the kind she despised. She had grown in a land where noblemen dipped their hands in milk to preserve their beauty, so that they may play the piano, the guitar, the violin. She was used to men opening doors for her…immersed in thoughts she saw what looked like a dense park or forest to her right, and suddenly she spurred the poor mare with all her might towards it. She managed to take her companions by surprise…next thing they knew is that she had sunk somewhere in the luscious vegetation they were passing by.
Holy Mother of Mercy! –one of the servants yelled. – We lost the princess in the Enchanted Forest.
That’s not simply good news. That’s simply bemusing. She just jumped into the foliage, no one could stop her and she disappeared in the forest no mortal dared to venture near…a forest cracking with magic. Only the Royal Kin was able to enter the forest, and that happened when they become of age, and not without a magic ring which made you invisible and a magic sword which made you invincible. Now it was his turn since he learned about it in his childhood, Prince Leo had waited for this moment, when his father the Emperor will send him in the Enchanted Forest.
Goodness, it was dark. Sasha was sneaking between huge auld trees, with their branches intertwined, on the back of the mare, who was out of breath already. It was silent and eyes were flashing like firebugs in the foliage. She began to feel the escape was after all not such a good idea. She tried to return, but trees had closed the way back as if they had been engrafted.
You shouldn’t be here! – a voice stated clearly. – I only want to tell you, that it is over with you! – the voice continued with animosity.
Sasha almost fell from the horse from fright.
Who are you? – she demanded and got no answer. Everything was silent again and her heart was beating really fast, but she kept on riding. The daughter of the Emperor of Sasha knew how to survive in the wilderness, be it a Magical forest or icy tundra. She soothed herself with the fact that she was a master of diplomatic skills. Every villain is in his essence an unhappy soul. If she knew anything, that was how to keep folks around her happy. But at this very moment, she felt her lucky star had abandoned her. She looked around for eventual attackers, then she spurred the poor mare relentlessly and entered even deeper in the Enchanted Forest.
Prince Leo was happy – he was waving his magical sword, and the thick vegetation which obstructed his way immediately drew back. He had heard the forest is almost impenetrable, but for the descendant of the Dragon Dynasty, who knew the legends, the forest will have to reveal its secrets, which were much more fascinating to him than the lost fiancée.
Sasha finally entered a dark lawn with dense fog. She jumped off the mare and stepped carefully, but she suddenly fell and sank in cold water. When she stood up the water reached to her waist. She was so startled, she didn’t even manage to scream. The water was very pure and icy. She was in a tight and deep place, made of stone and dark as hell. She was going to freeze to death. When she gathered herself together, she started screaming for help. Her voice was echoed by the walls of the well and it was menacing even to herself.
Prince Leo was no longer happy. He didn’t expect to be surrounded by bushes the entire time. He had heard about the beauty of the fairy folk, and the water nymphs with a hypnotic voice, who lived in the middle of the Enchanted Forest, but one had to pass the dark side realm in order to reach them. Even though he considered himself a brave person, he was already unnerved. He entered a dense fog and heard a menacing scream. He had been instructed by the Emperor to not pay attention to the sounds, but this sound penetrated his entire being. The royal horse got wild and almost threw him on the ground.
– Who is it? – the Prince demanded alarmed.
– Help – a sonorous female voice was echoed several times from somewhere very near. – I am in the bottom of the stone well.
That information made the prince step carefully in the fog knocking with his sword on the ground as a blind man until the sword clanked into the stone wall of the well.
– Please speak to me – he asked. – speak to me the entire time, so that I might orientate. – How did you get in here?
– I am a princess – the voice said. – I was sold by my stepmother for spices and exotic parrots, so I ran away from my wedding, and I am now in the middle of this mess, and it is so good that someone else is around.
– How very stupid of you! Well, you are really lucky. People don’t come out of the Enchanted forest alive.
Meanwhile, he managed to cut a branch of the nearest tree with his magic sword, and for a moment the forest moaned silently. He knew he shouldn’t hurt the Enchanted forest, but that was the only way to reach into the well. She caught the branch and he dragged her out of it. The moment she was out, the fog was lost, and they saw a little stone statue of bird which turned into a real black raven and flew away. They were in the midst of a magnificent garden and there was a rainbow in the sky. Then their attention was immediately drawn to each other.
The man was slender, well-built and tall, with tousled hair and innocent eyes. He bit his lower lip and looked at her with reproach and disapproval.
The woman had water dripping from her entire body she looked as if she had been in a terrific storm, which had done her no good. She was still trembling and needed consolation, but the best thing was, she wasn’t completely alone.
– Why don’t most people come out of here alive? – she inquired.
Oh, there is tricky folk around. – said he, who was also happy that he wasn’t alone in the forest.
I said you shouldn’t be here. – the voice boomed again. – you have unleashed the vicious. You broke the rules of the forest. You created problems for everybody.
Who are you? – both of them yelled. As an answer, the sky turned black and they ran to one of the nearest trees, to try to shelter from the heavy storm.
– We made the Sacred Forest angry. This means the Queen of the Dark Side will send her scariest subjects on our way. Rain or shine we must go. We have to find the magical folk because they are the only ones who know how we can get out of here. The hardest thing in this place is orientating. Follow me – he said and started pioneering their way with the sword.
They sneaked under the falling rain for what seemed like hours. Finally, the Prince got a divine revelation.
I think we should stop and pray to the Fairy Queen. – the Prince suggested and they both fell like bags of potatoes on the wet ground and leaned on a huge tree.
Fairy Queen – he started with the prayer his wet-nurse had taught him in his childhood: – Oh you fairly spoke and enlightened, pure and perfect, the one who immortal fairies and elves surrender to, glory to you! May we find out paths without obstructions! Give us the heart to conquer our pain and protect us in our misfortune, save us in your holy ground. For I am the Inheritor of the Dragon Dynasty now summoning you, to do your royal duty and protect my kin.
While he was murmuring the prayer with reverence the Prince realized he just declared his identity and looked at his fiancée, who had fallen peacefully asleep. That was it…no one falls asleep in the Enchanted Forest.
That’s not a good idea, he thought, but she was already hallucinating. Someone had to save her from her dream, and he did the stupidest thing he could – he fell asleep as well.
In the midst of a bog, sank to their knees, he caught her hand while they were trying to walk, but the mire seemed to tug them deeper and deeper. The sky was gray from birds – like that one – the statue from the well. Suddenly the water started to simmer lightly, as a mighty dragon of a monster emerged out of the march, breathing fire.
– I am of the kin of the Dragon tamers! Surrender to the Might of the Invincible Sword!
The creature didn’t seem it wanted to surrender at all. But the Invincible Sword in its muzzle obviously made the dragon pay homage to its owner, even if that was not his will. At least it stopped breathing fire. A woman with a black lace veil was slowly approaching walking upon the surface of the bog.
– Please help us – the girl prayed. – We are not from here.
– Do you see the birds, stupid humans? Do you know those soaring above us are only half of them? We somehow managed to put a hypnotizing spell on these. But the rest of them have already passed through the portals. How would you prefer to die? Fire or water?
The dragon recovered from the surprise and breathed fire in their direction again. They were already sunk to their waste.
– I am the Prince of the Dragon Dynasty. My father sent me here for my initiation. I am not allowed to die. Sorry. And he waved the sword valiantly in the direction of the fire-breathing monster.
– Who are you? – Sasha asked in disbelief.
But before he could react, they woke up in a totally different environment. They were sitting in the comfiest little fairy cottage in the world, with no trace of dirt or water on their clothes. In front of them on a soft velvet couch, with a flowery pattern was sitting a small woman in a rich white dress. She had the perfect features and above her very beautiful face, her hair was tied in two buns, coiled one over the other. That and a golden pendant around her neck was the only thing you would notice about this woman, but the first impression they got was that she was exceptional.
– Be welcome valiant Prince. I am the Fairy Queen. The Dark Queen wanted to punish you since all of us are in a situation because of you.
– She said something about birds and portals. But what portals? Can you explain?
In the Milky Way, in the Solar system, there lies a small planet, where only humans dwell. It is called Earth, it is a miraculous place and it is linked to Alpha Gem, and other planets with magical portals, which are protected by relentless guards. These guards respond to us, the Fairy Queen and the Dark Queen.
Our entire planet is linked to Earth since we are born in the fantasies of humans, who live there. I was born in a human mind, and so were you, and so was your charming lady. See, the situation here kind of depends on the minds of humans and it can become uncontrollable. We stop the other animals, but we can’t quite help the birds passing through the portals, therefore we had put a heavy spell on them, and all the birds were turned into stone statues. But you broke the spell, therefore half of them have already teleported on Earth, and this is a disaster. Those symbolic creatures – the birds – are the human scariest and saddest thoughts, the black thoughts of humanity. Back on Earth, they will misbalance the life of people, they will feel unhappy, their children will cry, and they might invent scary tales. That means more villains, more trolls, and more engagement for the Dark Queen to control them. You have broken the spell with the well of the living water, therefore you two are going to Earth, to fix the situation.