Once upon a time, in a forest far away, there lived gentle, kind creatures. All the animals lived in harmony with one another. The land was green and peaceful until one day, a great evil spread throughout the forest. The trees and plants wilted while once gentle animals turned into rabid killers, turning upon one another. The spirits of the forest whispered no more. The ursine children of the forest fled into a tunnel and hid. All hope was lost.
Much time passed when a beautiful princess from a mountain of iron came riding through on her unicorn. She saw the devastation of a once majestic forest and wept. The princess sought out the creatures in the tunnel, offering help, but they turned away from her, not knowing if she was a demon in disguise. The princess had to find another way to help them.
After searching far and wide, she found a village filled with corrupted creatures. It was far too late to save any of them. The evil had driven them to the brink of insanity. The unfortunate ones had to be purged before the land could hope to heal again. One by one, she slew the tormented souls. Day and night, she fought with valor, granting peace to the fallen. She brought offerings to the creatures in the tunnel, earning their trust little by little. In rain, in the snow, in the cold, in the dark, the princess vowed not to give up her fight. The one-eyed leader of the tunnel heard of the princess’ heroics and summoned her to do one last deed on their behalf — to slay the demon that dominated over them all.
The princess trudged through the snow as she made her way up to the cave where the demon resided. Once she was there, she drove the torch into the cave’s mouth, forcing the demon to reveal itself in satyr form.
“Your meddling in demonic affairs ends NOW, mortal! Face the great corrupter – Xandivious!”
The princess and the demon fought long and hard, but it was she who emerged victorious. She returned to the tunnel with the demon’s essence as proof of her deed. The one-eyed leader wept, “You’ve … you’ve saved us! … You are truly a hero among our kind, princess.” He handed her an offering of peace and asked her to give it to her king.
When the princess returned to the mountain of iron, the king rejoiced and shouted her name from mountaintop so all would know of her valiant actions. Ambassadors were dispatched to other nations to spread the good news. The king vowed to send more people to help restore peace to the forest and to the creatures of the tunnel.
The wee lad was fast asleep, snoring softly in his bed. I tucked him in and closed the door quietly. Once I was in me own bed, Ringo whispered, “So, was it really happily ever after?”
“Well … that’s how I’m telling it.”
With that, I blew out the candle on the nightstand.