Two Princesses, A Prince, Lamb and Red Dragon
Once upon a time, there were two Princesses and a Prince. They lived in a rainbow palace with their parents, the King and Queen, and with their pets, a little lamb and a red dragon. The children loved to play in the great garden behind the palace. It was filled with flowers and always smelled like springtime there and like the end of the rainbow.
They had a golden ball that they played catch with. They loved to throw it to each other. They loved to see it shining golden in the sunshine. So the spent their days laughing and playing catch, while Lamb and Red Dragon watched.
But one day, who knows why, when the Prince dropped the ball, Lamb took it in her mouth and ran.
“Come back, Lamby, come back,” the children called after her.
Lamb looked back over her shoulder and said something that sounded like “Ba Ba Ba,” although it was hard to understand her with a golden ball in her mouth. She kept running until she came to the gate at the back of the palace garden. She pushed the door open with her nose and kept on running, with the children and Red Dragon following behind.
The Princesses and the Prince hadn’t known she could run so fast.
“Don’t worry,” said Red Dragon. “I can keep up with her. Just follow me.” And he took to the air.
The three children kept running, even though they were out of breath and their legs were tired. They followed Red Dragon through the fields, through a little stream, through another field until they came to the edge of a forest.
Red Dragon landed at their feet. “I can’t see her any more. The trees are too thick, but she went this way.”
He led them into the woods. The trees were dense and there wasn’t really a path, but they kept going.
They came to a clearing. In the center of it was a pond. On the other side of the pond stood Lamb with the golden ball in her mouth.
“Lamby,” the children gasped, for they were out of breath from all of that running.
“Lamby, come here!”
Lamb tossed her head in the air and when she didk she tossed the ball right into the pond. The children watched their golden ball sink. The water was so still and clear that watched it sink all the way to the bottom of the pond. By the time it hit the bottom, it looked very small, so the children knew that the water was very deep.
They sat by the edge of the pond and stared at their golden ball. Lamb, tired from her romp, lay down behind them and quickly fell asleep. Red Dragon curled up with lamb and was soon snoring away. Every time he snored, steam came out of his nose.
As they sat and stared, a large warty toad hopped up beside them.
“What are you doing sitting next to my pond?” he demanded.
“We’re sorry, Mr. Frog,…” said the Prince.
“I am a toad,” said Toad.
“Oh, excuse me, Mr. Toad, you see our lamb threw our golden ball into your pond and we want it back. Could you give it back to us?”
“Harrumph!” croaked Toad. “I most certainly will not. I can’t dive that deep. I live on the edge of the pond. And I don’t appreciate your messing up my pond.”
He sat next to the children and stared at the golden ball at the bottom of the pond.
They all sat and stared for a long time. They were startled to hear a voice directly behind them/
“Hmm. What have we here?”
Princesses, Prince and Toad turned around (Lamb and Red Dragon were still sleeping) and saw an old gnome with a very long grey beard and a pointy red hat. He, too, was staring at the golden ball.
“I would like that golden ball,” he said.
“It’s ours,” said one of the princesses.
“But we can’t get it,” said the other. “The water’s too deep. Maybe you could dive down and get it for us.”
“I most certainly will not,” said the gnome. “First of all, my beard gets very heavy when it’s wet and I would sink like a stone, and second of all, I can’t swim anyhow.”
As they spoke, the sand at the bottom of the pond began to move, sending out concentric circles all the way to the edge. Children, Toad and Gnome all watched. The bottom of the pond began to move and a big orange fish popped into the water.
Before Toad could say, “Get out of my pond,” the orange fish opened his large mouth, swallowed the golden ball with a loud glumph and disappeared beneath the sand.
After a shocked silence, Gnome said, “I know how to get that golden ball and my supper all at one time. He picked up a stick, pulled a long hair out of his beard and tied them together. Then he poked around in the dirt, found a worm and tied it to the other end of the hair.
“Ta-da!,” he said, “A fishing rod.”
He dropped it into the pond.
Soon, the water began to move again in circles from the center of the pond out. Then the bottom of the pond moved and the fish rose again. Glumph! He bit the worm.
Gnome pulled hard, but he was getting dragged into the water.
“Help me!” he cried.
One princess grabbed him around the waist and started pulling.
“Watch the beard,” said Gnome.
The Prince grabbed on behind, but still the fish was pulling them toward the water.
The other Princess grabbed the prince, then dragon held on to her.
Poor Lamb, tired from her exertions, slept through the whole thing.
Finally, when they all pulled together, the great orange fish moved closer to the shore. They pulled some more and finally he emerged from the water, thrashing and gasping for air.
Just as Gnome was about to hit him on the head with a stick,
Phmulg—the golden ball popped out of his mouth.
Red Dragon picked it up. Gnome was about to hit the orange fish again.
“Wait!” said Fish. “I am no ordinary fish. I am an enchanted prince. Gnome put a spell on me. In fact, I am your brother!”
The children turned around to ask Gnome if that was true, but he was nowhere to be seen.
“Please save me,” said Fish.
“How do we do that?” asked the Prince.
“If you all kiss me at the same time, I will regain my former shape.”
On the count of three, a princess kissed each cheek and the Prince kissed Fish’s forehead.
The air shimmered and Fish started shrinking.
Then, a Prince stood before the children.
They all embraced.
“Now get away from my pond, all of you,” grumped Toad.
“But we don’t know the way home.”
“That Lamb knows the way. Now go away. It’s past time for my nap.”
The children woke Lamb, who did lead them back to the palace.
The King and Queen rejoiced at having their long lost son return to them.
They threw a party in the garden.
There were lots of treats.
The children played catch with the golden ball, which was as good as new, with a little polishing, after being in the Fish’s stomach.
And Lamb and Red Dragon played catch with their very own silver ball.
Last week, when I had “nap” with the children in my class, they asked me to make up a story. There were two girls and a boy, and one had a stuffed lamb and one had a stuffed red dragon. They had built a little rainbow story house out of playstands, cotton and silk cloths and a few other decorations. We snuggled up inside and this story, more or less, came out.
There’s always that moment for me when I make up a story when I have no idea at all of what to say, where to begin–totally blank. But with those sweet faces looking up at me, something has to come out, so I take a breath and begin.
Once I get started, it’s fun.
So I typed it up, did a quick sketch on Sketchbook Pro–and voila!
Thanks for stopping by!