(Author’s Note: This story is the second in a series of stories that feature princesses, twisted fairy tales, and an interrupting co-narrator. For ease, I’ve numbered them in the title. While they really don’t have to be read in a specific order, there are sometimes references to previous stories. I hope you enjoy. – Dean)
Once upon a time in a kingdom far away…
“Why is it always far away?”
“Once upon a time in a kingdom FAR away. Why not someplace near?”
It’s a fairy tale. It just usually is.
“If you live there, it’s not far away.”
“I know, right? Here’s another one. Why is it always a kingdom? There are queens.”
It’s a patriarchy thing.
“You said there would be dwarves. This is Snow White? And, you are going to change it?”
Yes and yes.
“Then, change it. Duh.”
Any other editorial observations?
“I think I’m good.”
Once upon a time in a monarch-ruled land that could be nearby but really isn’t…
“I think you cheated.”
There lived a beautiful princess who’s skin was pale as moonlight. Her hair was the color of the darkest night and her lips were the color of blood from a fresh cut.
“Ooh. You went dark. Cool. So, what’s her name? Moon Night?”
I don’t think so. But, we can call her Moon if you want.
“Yes! She doesn’t wear a sailor outfit does she?”
No. She dressed in the darkest clothes to match her hair and painted her nails to match her lips.
“She’s already a vampire?”
“She dresses like one.”
Vampires don’t all dress in dark clothing. There was this vampire clown who dressed like a, well, clown. Anyway, Moon just liked to dress that way. She loved to be out in the sun and would stay out all day even though she had to be careful with her pale skin. She was very happy.
One night, a woman came to the castle. Moon’s father was very interested in this woman, but she only paid attention to Moon. Later, the woman crept into Moon’s room and bit the sleeping Moon on the neck.
“She’s the vampire? The evil stepmother?”
She isn’t her stepmother and stepmothers can be quite nice.
“She’s a vampire. She’s evil.”
Not really. Just doing what vampires do.
“She bit Moon!”
She really liked her.
“Fine. Not evil, just lonely vampire bites goth looking happy princess and no evil stepmother with a talking mirror. Are you sure this is Snow White?”
“What’s the name of this story?”
Never Bite a Vampire Princess.
“Why would someone bite a vampire?”
It’s a kink.
“Oh. Okay. What happens next?”
Moon wakes up screaming because someone is biting her neck and not in the fun way. Guards come charging into the room. The vampire bites her own tongue and kisses Moon so that her blood gets in Moon’s mouth.
“We’re keeping this SFW, right?”
Yes, we are. The woman, after sharing her blood with the princess, jumps out the window and gets away.
“Did she turn into a bat and fly?”
It was the ground floor and she was a good runner.
Princess Moon got very sick for three days and three nights. On the third night, she was feeling so much better that she bit one of her guards. He told the king and the king called for the local vampire hunter.
“What’s his name?”
He doesn’t need one. He won’t be here long.
The king told the vampire hunter to take his daughter and kill her.
“That’s harsh. I know that she is a vampire. But, still.”
He didn’t know what else to do. Moon hears that the vampire hunter is coming to kill her and she jumps out the window and runs away into the forest.
“Someone should close that window.”
They probably should. Moon runs all through the night. Just as dawn is coming, she finds an old building very deep in the forest. She enters and discovers seven dwarves inside.
“What are their names?”
The building is a monastery and the dwarves are all monks who have taken a vow of silence. She never knows their names.
“Now, I know you’re cheating.”
Maybe a little.
“If it’s a monastery, isn’t she in danger? She’s a vampire.”
These dwarves worship Hel, the Norse goddess of the dead and the underworld. They are actually happy to see Moon. They keep her well fed and protect her during the day. She keeps them safe at night. They all get their happily ever after.
“That’s not right. Where’s the Prince?”
I thought you didn’t like the stories always having a prince?
“There has to be someone.”
Fine. Stories are told of a beautiful princess who sleeps all day and is guarded by dwarves deep in the forest. The true love kiss gets thrown in for fun as always. There is no mention of vampires or dwarven monks of Hel.
Over time, many princes make their way to the monastery, never to be heard from again. On those days, Moon and the dwarves celebrate with a special meal.
“They eat them? What kind of bedtime story is this?
You wanted a prince.
“Not that way. What happened to Some?”
“The Princess Awe Some?”
She didn’t make it to this story. There was a big tournament in the Queendom of Faraway. She went there instead.”
“You’re still cheating, but that sounds cool.”
Ready for bed?
“No. I can’t sleep now.”
I’ll stay with you until you fall asleep.
“It’s going to be a long night. What’s next?”
Werewolves. But, not tonight.