The Prince's Quest
The Prince's Quest
“Will you marry me, baby gal?” Prince Carl asked, an absurd, yet completely love-struck look on his face.
Princess Catherine looked rather impudent as she said, “Who says I love you?”
The prince didn't say anything, and the Princess knew why. She could see in his face he was so much in love with her that he didn't even hear her.
“That's wonderful, baby,” he said, the absurd look not leaving his eyes.
“WHO SAID I LOVE YOU?!” She shrieked.
In a moment the prince was out of his daze.
“Well, um, nobody—my mind,” he answered.
“But I never said I loved you,” she said impudently.
The prince looked sad, but never-the-less, he turned to leave. The princess jumped from her throne, and digging her fingernails into his shoulders firmly, she spun him around.
“Ow.” Was all he said.
“I didn't say I don't love you, you stupid horse,” she said with and tone of annoyance.
“Oh, but you did,” he insisted.
“I did not!” She said angrily. And, because she was so mad at him for thinking “such an awful thing” as she thought of it, she without warning raised her right foot and kicked him in the stomach.
“Yowee!” The prince yelled, and doubled over with pain.
At the sight of him, the princess began to giggle. The giggle turned into a laugh. And before she knew it, she was doubling over with laughter in spite of the poor prince, who was in a good deal of pain by now. When he was finally able to breathe again, as the hard, unexpected kick had knocked all of his breath out of him, he rose to his feet.
“Why you little—” he started to say, but never finished, because of the of the innocent look on his trueloves face. Once again, he was dumb-struck by her beauty, and how much in love he was with her.
“Tell you what,” she said. “If you can get me the golden dragon head that never stops pouring out all the riches of mankind from its mouth, then, and only then, shall I marry you.”
The color drained from Prince Carl's face. “But—but, you mean the one that there is only one in the whole entire world? The one that the dragon guards with all of his life? The dragon that has killed every man that has ventured toward his riches?”
The princess nodded airily, as though she didn't even realize that that she was putting the poor princes live in danger, and giving him a practically impossible quest.
“Oh.” The prince plopped over, and the princess did nothing, for she knew he had merely fainted, and she was quite a bit used to seeing princes faint.
When he finally finally awoke, he was still on the hard, pure white marble floor of which he had fainted on.
“Ow. My head!” He groaned, touching a big bump on his head gingerly. The princess announced that she had been sitting there the whole time he was “out cold” as she put it, and she had been timing how long he was out.
“You just won't ever guess how long you were out!” She giggled.
The prince rolled his eyes. “How long?”
“Guess. You never will.”
“Way more,” the princess said.
“Um, ten hours?”
“Not even close. Shall I tell you?”
The prince nodded.
“Two days, eight hours, six minutes, twelve seconds, and one split millisecond,” she replied as though it was nothing. “But, I do believe that you would have been out only about one day, four hours, and three minutes, which is about half. The reason you were out double is because when you fainted, you hit the floor, and that knocked you out double, so you were out double as long, when you might have only been out half so long. You do get my meaning, don't you, dear Carl? Anyhow, I do believe that you should start out after the dragon head.”
The prince felt like the world was spinning around him, and he said so. “I must be dizzy. I think that before I go on your stupi--" He caught himself before saying 'stupid' for fear she would get angry him and said, "your quest, that is, I mean, I need a good night's sleep.”
“Oh, very well, then. If you insist. I shall pack you your things, and first thing in the morning you may be off.”
So the prince lay down in bed, and before long he was fast asleep, dreaming beautiful dreams of him and his love, and their marriage. But it was only when he awoke bright and early the next morning that he realized it was all only a dream.
So the prince set out. And after hours upon hours of riding his horse, he came upon a cave. He walked in, and the room looked like it might be fit for a king, with jewels and crowns of all kind laying about the cave. But it only took him a moment to realize the ground was shaking, and there was an enormously loud snoring noise, that was like that of a huge sleeping giant. He looked up, and there, on top of the beautiful riches, sat a fierce looking dragon. He was relieved to see that it was asleep, as he had not noticed it at first. Beyond the dragon lay the the golden dragon head, which even at this moment was filling the room more and more with its beautiful riches. The prince had no idea how to get to it. Although the dragon slept, he had heard that if you get close enough to a dragon, even if sleeping, he could sense your presence and immediately awaken. The walls were much too narrow for him to get past the dragon without his waking up, so he sat down upon the many treasures, put his chin in his hand, and began to think.
After what seemed to the prince a very long time, he began on the journey back to his lovers castle. When he entered the princesses castle, she merely held out her hand and asked, “Where is it?” instead of something polite, such as, for instance, "Did you you manage alright, dear?" Or something of the sort.
Prince Carl cleared his throat. “Ahem,” he said. And in his nervousness, he said even louder, “Ahem,” again.
“Well?” Princess Catherine asked with much impatience.
“Ahem,” he said again. “I, uh, I don't have it, darling.”
“What!” She screeched.
“I said 'I don't have it.'”
“But, you said you would get it for me!”
“Well, darling baby girl, it's rather complicated, you see.” Again, he cleared his throat.
“I'm all ears,” the princess said with an air of impatience.
“Uh, well you see, honey, the dragon was in the way.”
“In the way!!” She once again screeched. And even louder, “COWARD!!!”
The prince gulped.
“I shall never speak to you again until you bring me the dragon head,” she said stubbornly. And, turning her nose up like a snoot, she crossed her arms over her chest and turned her head away. The prince felt insulted, but he said nothing. He would get her the dragons head even if it cost him his life. He gulped again and looked up. She still wasn't looking at him. He sighed, and started off once again towards the dragons cave. As he neared it some time later, he saw that the dragon was still asleep. This amused him, as he did not know that dragons slept so long. He figured that it felt its most prized possession, which of course was the dragon head, seeing as how he would not have any of this wonderful treasure without it, was safe and sound as long as he was there in front of them, guarding them just like a responsible, diligent nanny.
“There must be another way in,” said the prince half aloud. “There has just got to be.”
So again the prince sat for hours and hours on the heap of riches and thought like he never had before in his whole in entire life (which was quite hard).
He thought until he thought that his brain might burst if he did anymore thinking. And so he he thought it a good idea to stop thinking, lest his brain should stop working, and could not do anymore thinking forever, or at least for a good, long time. So he did. And it was only when he stopped thinking, when he came up with a plan. “What a fool I was not to think of it before,” he chuckled to himself.
And so, picking up a large stick, he went around to the other side of the cave and began to dig. He dug until he felt his arms would give way, yet still he did not stop digging. Finally he dug a hole big enough for his whole body to fit through. He wriggled his way in, and saw the beautiful golden dragon head. He crept up quietly, very quietly indeed, behind the dragon and picked up the golden head. But very seldom is there something too quiet for a dragon when something is that near, even if the dragon is asleep. And, this seemed the problem in this case. The dragon woke up, and he popped one eye open, and slowly turned his head. Then, in the great surprise of what his one open eye beheld, the other eye popped open. Now he knew his one eye could not possibly be lying to him. The prince was busying himself stuffing his pockets with the dragons treasures that lay about the floor with one hand, while the other held the dragons head. This, of course, more than enraged the dragon.
He breathed fire that melted gold coins and the like all around him. The prince jumped in surprise and looked up. Of course, he gulped with fear. “Yipe,” he breathed. “Well, better do what I can to save my hide!” And with that, he drew his sword, knowing there was not time enough to crawl back through the hole, and even if there was, the dragon would come around, and he would still have to fight it.
“Roar!” He growled, baring his teeth, making an effort to scare the dragon, but it made no effect on it whatsoever. The dragon breathed fire, and the prince ducked just in time, and the fire went right over his head, missing it only by inches. The prince wiped sweat from his forehead. He could see this was going to be bad. This time the dragon aimed at his feet, and he jumped high, and it missed him...barely. This went on for some time, when finally, the prince lunged forward, aiming the sword for the dragons heart. The dragon turned, and the sword went through its neck.
This time, the prince lunged forward, grabbed hold of the dragons neck, and swung himself over. He began stabbing the dragon repeatedly. The dragon wailed in pain, and after some time, fell to the ground. Dead. The prince grinned proudly and swung himself off of the dragon corpse's neck.
“Yippee! How could the princess ask for a braver husband? A more valiant, wonderful one? It's true, there are very few!” He shouted with delight, not even realizing the rhymes he had made previously, and began stuffing his hat, pockets, and anything else he could find to hold things (like treasure) in, with treasure. Then he grabbed up the golden dragon head and went happily off to his trueloves palace. She kept her promise and married him, and they lived happily ever after.