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The Sleeping Prince and the Knight

by dahlia58


Once upon a time, a princess found a prince sleeping under a tree, the most innocent looking boy she'd ever seen. She swore to protect him, and for a long time, she stayed by his side doing just that. But not even once did he open his eyes, nor could he be removed from his resting place. He continued to sleep peacefully as the princess continued to care for him. Her family tried to stop her from returning to the tree day by day, but she always managed to shake them off, and after a while, they finally gave up.

Strangely enough, she didn't know why she was so attached to the slumbering prince. But his well-being was all that mattered to her at this point. She continued to slash any wild beasts that dared to come near him. She continued to make sure he was warm in winter and cool in summer. She continued to comb his dark hair and straighten his clothes every morning. She never neglected him, even as the months turned to years, even as she became a woman while he remained a youth.

Eventually, the princess grew ill, no doubt caused by her constant trips to the tree without rest, but still, she somehow managed to leave the palace without her family's knowledge. As she limped near the tree, her legs gave out and she collapsed upon the ground. No matter how hard she tried to stand back up, it was no use. In the end, she mustered all her strength to crawl towards where the prince slept.

When she was finally next to him, she stroked his soft face with shivering hands and whispered weakly.

"Even now, I know not why I care for you so. All I wished was to see your lovely eyes and smile, if only just once."

Leaving these words, she drew her last breath. It was only after her soul returned to God, however, that the prince began to stir. Slowly opening his eyes, he turned to look at the poor princess lying beside him. Tears rolled down his cheeks.

"My eternal slumber can only end at the cost of another. Why didn't you just leave me be, foolish woman?"

He smiled sadly. It was all he could do for this staunch maiden who'd cared for him to the end.

The sleeping knight, now a sleeping princess, seemed to be smiling as well.


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88 Reviews


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Fri Feb 07, 2020 2:18 am
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Gnomish wrote a review...



Hello!

I like the idea of this story, and it's short and sweet too. It kind of reminds me of reversed sleeping beauty, but I guess it's a whole different idea. I liked the ending, it was sad, but fitting for the story. One thing I noticed is that you mentioned that the princess became a woman, and then she got sick, but at the end it seems like she was pretty old. Or maybe she was just really sick.

Anyways, this was a fun read!
-Gnomish
(PS. Thanks for the follow!)




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Sun Nov 24, 2019 7:39 pm
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LOLACONER says...



hi,your story is well written and thrilling,i enjoyed it,but the princess cared foolishly,now the i learnt for this story is that we must be able to use wisdom to do all things,because in your story the princess is both caring and fooiish,she supposed to have use wisdom to cared from him,your story is good,keep it on!




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Mon Nov 18, 2019 8:00 pm
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EverLight says...



Well written my friend!




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Mon Nov 18, 2019 3:42 am
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Nymeria wrote a review...



Hi Dahlia, I really enjoyed reading this mini story. It's melancholy and sweet, and I love the fairy tale vibes. I do have some questions that you might consider addressing int he story, though:

Why was it important that the girl/woman was a princess? Would it have made a difference if she was just a peasant?

Why was she so attached to the sleeping body? It kind of seemed like there was no reason behind her affection. Even though she says she does not know herself, I think that there should be at least some hint of why in the story.

I did like the ending, how they switched places and both seemed kind of satisfied with it, even though it was sad.

And for a couple of nit-picks:
The phrases "Strangely enough" and "at this point" don't really fit with the general language you used in this story.

Overall, great story :) Keep writing!

Nymeria




dahlia58 says...


Thank you for your commentary. This was just something I came up with on the spot. The princess thing was random as well. I'm glad you read this.



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Sun Nov 17, 2019 10:23 am
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Zaibae wrote a review...



Hello there!!

This is such a lovely and sad story. I admire the strength of the princess and her hope too, as she comes day by day to see her beloved prince which she does not know at all. She is kind and has spirit. She was also very brave to leave her home when she was ill, ultimately at the cost of her life.
"My eternal slumber can only end at the cost of another. Why didn't you just leave me be, foolish woman?" is such a poignant yet heartbreaking line.

The story ended in a very dark and sad way, but it was satisfying as the princess seemed to smile in her slumber.

Again, brilliant work. I would love to read more from you in the future.

Much love,
Zaibae




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Sun Nov 17, 2019 8:05 am
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mel0 wrote a review...



I really like this! I like fairytales and you were able to make this one fresh and new! I love that the princess was protecting the prince. I also really liked how she grew old and he stayed young. I felt that telling that the family was a bit of a weird/undeveloped detail. I think it would benefit if you fleshed that out a bit. Also, her illness confused me a little. I think we definitely need more details about that. It felt to me more like she was super old and had a hard time getting around more than a sickness. You could go into a little more detail of the cause of her illness: disease, oldness, virus, flu, something along those lines. Of course, these are just my opinions so feel free to take or leave them. Overall, I really enjoyed reading this and loved the ending! Great job!




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Sun Nov 17, 2019 7:12 am
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EternalRain wrote a review...



Hello dahlia!

I saw this in the green room and not only the title captured my attention but also that this is a fairy tale! I love fairy tales, so I'm really excited to review this.

Right off, we have classic characters of the prince and the princess. I like how the roles are reversed - typically we see the prince caring for the princess. The ending was also a bit unexpected, but in a good way! The price of the prince's "freedom" being death was super interesting. It's a bit mysterious in terms of how it works, but I'm not too concerned with that because I think there's a lot of leeway in fairy tales with the boundaries of magic, haha.

I do wish, however, there was a reason this princess was so attached to the prince. Was she in love? Does she feel indebted to him somehow? Or maybe the idea of innocence is what drew her - if so, I'd love for that to be a bit of a stronger theme - I think that could really strengthen the piece and the message of the fairy tale (loss of innocence maybe?).

One other thing - I thought the reason the princess became ill was a bit underdeveloped. If her trips to the prince were the cause of her illness, maybe it's because she was in the cold so often or ran into some funky bacteria? I just think lack of rest isn't the strongest (or most intense) cause of illness.

Last comment I wanted to make was I love the idea of how he stayed young while she grew older. I think that provides a very interesting potential to grow into a stronger theme of innocence, or maybe just brings conflict to the possible scenario that the princess was in love? Anyway, I just loved that little added touch - the staying young/growing old trope always makes me feel so sad inside.

I think that's all I have to say! I would love to read more fairy tales from you!

Peace,
~EternalRain





Only the suppressed word is dangerous.
— Ludwig Borne