(Author’s Note: This story is the third 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 small village beside a great forest, there lived a young girl. On her eighteenth birthday, she was given a hooded cloak the color of dried blood.
“Why did you stop?”
You haven’t interrupted.
“Why are you feeling my forehead? I’m not sick. I was listening. Isn’t that the point?”
Oh. Then, I will continue.
“Wait. Since we already stopped, I have questions.”
Of course you do.
“I could have just listened, you know. Anyway, you didn’t say she was a beautiful princess.”
She is beautiful, just thought you might be tired of me saying everyone is beautiful.
“Everyone is beautiful. You can still say it.”
Good point. She isn’t a princess though.
Her parents aren’t a king and queen.
“So. I bet her daddy calls her princess.”
What if she doesn’t have one?
“She doesn’t need a daddy to call her princess to be one. It’s just nice when he does.”
Once upon a time in a small village beside a great forest, there lived a beautiful princess. On her eighteenth birthday, she was given a hooded cloak the color of dried blood. The giving of the cloak is a family tradition always given for the eighteenth birthday and is to be worn during the next full moon.
“What’s her name?”
“Really? Thought you were a writer or something. The best you can do is Red?”
What would you suggest?
That’s just a shade of red.
“But, it sounds better than Red.”
Scarlet was excited when she was given her cloak. That night was the first night of the full moon and she was to go to her grandmother’s house deep in the woods before nightfall. She took water, a satchel of food, and her knife and headed into the forest.
“She has a knife?”
“She’s a werewolf?”
“A werewolf that needs a knife?”
It’s still day and it’s her eighteenth birthday, so she hasn’t changed yet and you are getting ahead in the story.
“Does Scarlet know she’s a werewolf?”
I don’t know yet.
I make this up as I go.
“You don’t know what’s going to happen?”
I have an idea.
“Then, how do you know I am getting ahead in the story if you don’t know the story either?”
Because I haven’t gotten there yet.
“That shouldn’t make sense. What’s next?”
Scarlet is walking through the forest when she comes across a man walking alone.
“Prince Charming? I thought there was supposed to be a wolf.”
Technically, Scarlet is the wolf in the story. And, I never said he was a prince.
“Is he going to die?”
Do you want him to?
“If he is going to die, then he has to be the Prince. It’s a pattern.”
Scarlet is walking through the forest when she comes across a prince walking alone.
“Now, it’s getting good. She’s going to eat him.”
I didn’t say that.
“Just wait. And, when will Princess Awe Some show up.”
She’s not in this story.
“Again? Why not?”
She has nothing against werewolves. Her favorite cousin is one.
“How did that happen?”
Prom night. Full moon. Hairy date.
“I want to hear that story. It’s like Teen Wolf meets Carrie.”
Not quite. Let’s finish this story first.
“I’ve been listening.”
The Prince goes into full charming mode, even showing Scarlet his jeweled long sword.
“Ewww. SFW please.”
It’s a sword. Really. The Prince claims he knows the forest well and that there is a faster path to her grandmother’s house. He leads her off the main path deeper into the woods. The Prince does everything he can to slow Scarlet down so he can spend more time with her. They even stop for a meal and Scarlet shares her food and water with him. It is getting later and later in the day.
The Prince runs out of delaying tactics and they arrive at grandmother’s house just as the full moon rises. Scarlet’s grandmother is waiting and congratulates Scarlet for bringing her first kill with her. The Princes turns just as Scarlet grabs his hand and cuts it with her knife. She brings his hand to her mouth and licks his blood.
“Whoaaa. You even used the knife. Don’t stop now.”
The taste of the Prince’s blood triggered Scarlet’s transformation and she turned into a wolf. The Prince, thinking himself charming and not very brave, fainted.
Be nice. He’s about to be eaten. Some people don’t handle that very well.
After their meal, Scarlet and her grandmother run through the great forest, playfully chasing rabbits and deer until they come upon a clearing lit by the moon. There, they meet with other wolves and Scarlet is welcomed into the pack. She gives the pack back the hooded cloak, it’s color now brightened with the blood of the Prince.
“What happened to the woodsman that kills the wolf?”
Grandmother ate him years ago.
“So…. not sleeping again.”
Okay, I’ll stay.
“This is the part where you tell me what’s next but it won’t be tonight.”
Is it? I think there will be a gorgon.
“Really? I’m ready.”
“I knew you would say that.”