Fairy Tales For Kids - Witch Bride For The Prince

 Witch-Bride For The Prince

This happened long long ago. The queen of the ancient kingdom died after giving birth to a son. The young king Danny was heartbroken. For a full year, nobody dared to propose a second marriage for him. But when at last his well-wishers broached the proposal, he rejected it. "There is no dearth of women in the palace to nurse the little prince," he said. Time passed. One day the little prince toddled up to his father and asked, "Why is my mother missing? Children who play with me have their mothers!" "Your mother will be back soon," said the king hurriedly, to pacify the child. But thereafter he grew pensive. "Indeed, the child deserves the love of a mother, I'll fail in my duty if I cannot provide him with that necessity," he thought. But he did not speak what was in his mind to anybody. Sometimes, when he was in a thoughtful mood, he galloped along the riverbank, all alone. One evening, he saw a beautiful young lady standing under a tree with flowers. He got off his horse and went near her and asked her who she was. "Well, I'm one from a faraway sphere. I loved this tree and stopped to enjoy the fragrance of its flowers," she said. "Whoever you are. I feel that you can best adorn the throne meant for the queen of my kingdom. My motherless little son is in need of a mother," said the king. "That's not possible," said the young lady. "It is about to get dark. It is not safe for you to loiter here at this hour. I cannot be at peace if I leave you alone here! I will lead you to your parents."

With these words, the king caught hold of her and tried to pull her towards his horse. But the lady snatched her arm from the king's grip and said angrily, "It is because of your eyes that you saw me. Grow blind! You must pay the price for your audacity to propose marriage with a fairy princess, being an ordinary mortal!" Before the eyes of the horrified king, the damsel flew into the air and disappeared. But that is also the last thing the king saw. Thereafter he grew blind. Soon his bodyguards came looking for him and led him to the palace. All were sad for the king's misfortune. Physicians and wizards did their best, but nothing could restore to the king his eyesight. Years passed. The little prince grew up to be a brave and handsome young man. One day, from his father's old minister, he came to know how his father grew blind. "It's in his anxiety to secure a mother for me that he lost his sight. It is my duty to go in search of the sphere of the fairies," he thought. "Far and far have you to travel in order to reach the sphere of the fairies!" he was told again and again by the travelers, mendicants, and pilgrims. "We've heard that it is beyond the mountains yonder. But who can go there?" Tired and hungry, the prince sat down under a tree one evening and fell asleep. When he woke up, he saw an ugly old woman sitting near him with some delicious fruits. "Eat, young traveler, and there is a cool spring to quench your thirst." "Who are you?" asked the prince. "What do I look like?" asked the woman grinning. "To be honest, you look like a witch!" "Very well, take me like that. But who are you and what brings you here?" The prince told her all about this mission and asked her if she could lead him to the land of the fairies. "I can lead you to the gates of that land, but cannot cross into it," said the witch, "but on condition that you'll grant me what I will need of you." "I will if it is within my capacity to do so," said the prince. 

Holding the hand of the prince, the witch took a leap into the clouds and flew over the mountains. Soon they descended before a magnificent archway. "I'll wait here till you return," said the witch, wishing the prince good luck. The prince entered the strange sphere. Everything in it was charming. Male and female fairies, feeling curious, crowded around him. He requested them to lead him to the fairy princess. They gladly obliged him. The prince bowed to the surprised princess, "O noble princess, I remind you of your curse thrown on an unfortunate king years ago, making him blind. It was on my account that he sought your hand in marriage, without knowing who you are. He has suffered your curse for twenty long years. Should you not lift it now?" he said pleadingly. "It seems I misunderstood him," muttered the princess. "Very well, take this flower and apply it to his eyes. He shall recover his vision. But this will be effective only if you prove to be a man who keeps his promises. Should you fail in your promises, your father shall grow blind again." The prince received the flower and bowed to the fairy princess and came out of their sphere. The witch who awaited him took hold of him and leaped through the clouds to arrive right in front of the king's palace. "Now, dear Prince, you must keep your promise and grant me my wish," said the witch. "Certainly. What's your wish?" "You must marry me!" The prince stood shocked and stunned. But his face soon showed signs of determination. "All right. I'll marry you." There was rejoicing inside the palace when the prince was seen for everybody had been upset at his sudden disappearance. And when the prince met the king and brushed his eyes with the magic flower, the king began to see things after twenty years. The king embraced his son, tears rolling down his cheeks. All the others burst out into shouts of joy.

"But, Father, you must allow me to do something which you may not like at all," said the prince and showing to the king the hideous looking witch through a window, said again, "That is the lady who is to adorn the palace as your daughter-in-law." "What! Are you mad?" cried out the king. "Not exactly," said the prince, "but if I don't marry her, you may grow blind again!" "I'll prefer blindness to this sight!" exclaimed the king. "But I'll fail to keep my promise! That must not happen!" said the prince. He came out of the palace hurriedly and told the witch, "We'll marry. But first, let's escape to some distant place. You may not be acceptable to them as the future queen of this land." "Hold my hand and then I'll do whatever you say." The witch extended her skinny hand. The prince shut his own eyes and held her hand. But how long can he keep his eyes shut? He heard a sweet sound of laughter and opened his eyes. What should he see but a most beautiful damsel, blushing and laughing, laughing and blushing, held by him! "What's this?"  he stammered out. "To be precise, I'm the princess of Sealand. My father had a love for miracles. A wizard was his teacher. I too became interested in wizardry and the fellow taught me a lot. That's how I could lead you so swiftly to the land of the fairies and back. But one day the wizard insisted on marrying me. Since I did not agree, he changed me into a witch. But when he realized that I too had learned some spells, through which I could cause him some harm, say, make his voice hoarse like a donkey's or his tummy as big as an elephant's, he said that if someday some eligible bachelor would agree to marry me and hold my hand, I will get back my original form. I left my parents, palace and lived in solitude till I met you." You can imagine what a festivity both the kingdoms would have witnessed!

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