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An Economical Fairytale

August 17, 2009

Princess Eileen once lived.[1] She sat in a room of neutral hues.[2] Unlike her counterparts, who twiddled their thumbs in giant towers, grew their hair out, or experienced great hardships, Princess Eileen went to school. She buried her nose in books and ambition.[3] She studied free trade, and the stock market. She also studied art, deciding all concepts were the same level of abstraction. It was all a bit of a slog, the testing, the memorization, but Princess Eileen didn’t have a choice. In truth, she too was a lady in waiting. A Prince[4] was supposed to be part of her story.

Prince dreamt of saving, but spent most of his time looking at clouds.[5]

“I hate my job,” said Prince one day.

Princess Eileen said, “Well, why not find a new one?”[6]

The prince gasped, “Have you seen the economy lately?”

The princess hadn’t.[7] “What’s it like? The Economy?”

“Like a dragon, only it can be prettier.”

“Do you like pretty things?”

“Only if they stay that way.”[8]

He was supposed to save her. In fact, he was supposed to have saved her three years prior, but, at the time, he’d been too busy with his profits. Then, he’d been rather swept up in his new-found love of squash. Six months ago, it was simply impossible to help ease Princess Eileen’s need for new colour coordination because he was trying to focus more on fixing his bad habits.[9]

She tilted her head to the side, “Are you ever going to save me?”

“Of course!” said Prince, standing up full force, getting a head rush, and quickly sitting back down.

Princess Eileen titled her head further to the side, getting up slowly and taking a walk of the castle.[10]

In the forest, Princess Eileen ran into a wise person.[11]

This person spoke eloquently on many subjects. “I, too, used to be royal.”[12]

“How did you end up here?”[13]

In listening, the princess learned a lesson.[14]

She returned to the castle and went rummaging through the garage.

Days turned to weeks, which turned to months. Princess Eileen went back into the castle, a dash of red along her forearm. While skipping through the hallway, she ran into Prince.

“I am going to save you,” he said bravely.

Princess Eileen tilted her head at him again.

“Eventually,” he mumbled, “have you been out there lately? Things are crashing. Numbers falling from the sky. Executives too.”

“I have been out there. The sky wasn’t falling,” she responded simply, “Oh, and I no longer need saving.”

“What?”

“If it’s not the economy, it’ll be an evil witch.”

“Witches are difficult to deal with. They possess all sorts of powers. Dark powers. Is that blood on your arm?”

“No, it’s paint. I’ve been redecorating. My tower was quite drab. I’ve decided to become a designer.”

“You’re supposed to be the decoration”.

“No, I’m supposed to be saved, but you aren’t coming.”

“Well, I mean the economy.”

“Yes, the economy, the witches, the dragons. Regardless… I don’t need saving. I do however need more paint.”

So ends the story.[15]

by Kelsey Blair

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NOTES

1. For the sake of space, time and context are irrelevant. Safe to say she lived, or is living; verb tense is of no matter. [BACK]

2. Setting. It should be inferred her life was dull, boring, and in need of help.  No one who paints a room “cream” is filled with passion. [BACK]

3. Character traits which demonstrate Princess Eileen’s desperate state: education is, as we all know, exceptionally dangerous for the rich. It is also dangerous for the poor, but far less accessible. [BACK]

4. Despite his generic title, the Prince is very important; hence, capitalization. Also, Prince and Princess Eileen are not related. It’s very difficult to root for incest. [BACK]

5. Conflict: Prince vs. Princess. Unlike Princess vs. Evil Stepmother, all creatures, including excessively small persons, horses with horns, and inanimate objects with the power of speech will be useless to advancing the plot. There is no room for comic relief here. Even very witty relief. [BACK]

6. She raised her eyes from the large book she was reading and tried to flip her hair. It was an action she didn’t practice often. Needless to say, it went badly, and Prince furrowed his brow in a confused way. As has been noted, Prince wasn’t very bright. [BACK]

7. Princesses are consistently badly acquainted with their enemies. Some sort of genetic flaw? [BACK]

8. This answer is unfitting. Clearly, the Prince had things to learn. There isn’t time for that here, but the record notes: maturation needed. [BACK]

9. A pattern has formed. Lengthy, but necessary, like a long journey. [BACK]

10. Clearly, no room for descriptors. However, safe to say, the grounds were large and lush. The forest, located near the back gate was rarely attended to. Past the gate, which was made of a kind of steel so strong it was luminous, were trees. “Trees” is a bad descriptor, suggesting something mundane, found on street corners and window sills. These plants manage to create space while also seeming to hug anyone who enters them.  It is a place children dream of getting lost in, full of bright coloured insects and crickets that seem to sing instead of chirp. Not that any of this is relevant. [BACK]

11. For the sake of equality, the person will not be gendered. For the sake of discrimination, the person will not be a peasant or old. Class and age are not factors here. [BACK]

12. Princess Eileen had met one other being who claimed to be royal. She’d never since like the taste of frog legs. [BACK]

13. The story, was, of course, long, winding, and only moderately exciting to listeners. [BACK]

14. This is ever so important. You are supposed to learn this lesson too. Did you? [BACK]

15. Normally, there would be a review of the moral, but space is not permitting. For reassurance sake, Princess Eileen did live, even relatively happily. She made a business for herself, painting castles, saving others from unsatisfactory colours. She waited for no one. [BACK]

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