The Frog Prince

The frog sat still on Princess Maria’s palm, its only
movement an occasional bulging out of its throat, as its big round eyes watched

“A prince?” she said thoughtfully, after a while.  “Prince of where?”

“Of Lower Lotharingia”, the amphibian croaked.  “A land of prosperous farmers and merchants
waiting to welcome me back with my beautiful queen, if you would do me that homour.  It is blessed with a fine climate, and
limitless wealth from its – “

“Silver mines” she interrupted.  “Yes, I know all about them.  Daddy lets me sit in on the military
briefings.  We’ve 200,000 men poised on the
borders, and we’ve made a deal with Upper Lotharingia to split the country
between us.  The enemy army’s just a bunch of part-time soldiers – merchants and farmers. They won’t last two days against our armoured divisions.  Then we can enslave the survivors and put them to work in the silver mines.  Daddy thinks we can double
the output!
A chain-gang of 30 miners can produce almost 30 ounces of silver a day, if they’re whipped hard enough.”
“So why would I want to marry you?”

“But… but you could be a beloved queen, and – “ the frog

“Or a despotic empress” she laughed, picking the animal up
by its back foot, where it dangled helplessly for a moment, before being tossed
onto the sun-baked flagstones for the crows.
Try clicking on ‘fairy tale’ in that word cloud to the right, if you liked the words, and on ‘heart-stopping beauty’ if you preferred the pictures.

0 thoughts on “Croaked”

  1. I read somewhere it could only be a proper fairy tale if it ended with 'and they all lived happily ever after.' Which – obviously – they didn't.

    Well, I mean, she did of course. Maybe that's all that matters anyway

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