Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Froggy Fairy Tale

Once upon a time, there was a toad with a sense of adventure.  He hopped along, skipping over leaves and twigs and the large expanse of grass until he saw a huge castle of wood and molded green plastic.  It looked to be a magical place, full of bugs and dreams, so he hopped as fast as his little legs could move until he found himself in the path of a huge, dangerous, gas-guzzling lawn chariot.

This toad was lucky, however, because the mower was being driven by the King of this land who, knowing the fondness his two princes had for toads, summoned the Queen to rescue the toad from certain death.

This Queen, wise beyond her years but whose sentimentality outweighed her intelligence, called the princes to see the toad.  Immediately they were awestruck with the tiny amphibian, and, despite their love for all things animal, immediately enslaved him in a Sterilite bin from the kingdom of Walmart.

In it they put grass clippings, sticks, leaves, and a saucer of water using the one platter from which neither prince would ever eat.

"I don't want the orange plate, it stinks!"
"You take it, it's a baby plate!"

The burden of royalty is great.

The toad found himself in a great hall with gray walls and wilting leaves.  A large vine stretched nearly to the top, and he climbed as far as he could reach and saw that one of the princes was using a large tablet to capture his likeness.  "How strange," he thought, "that boy looks ridiculous with such a large device pointed at me.  Surely a smaller apparatus like an iPhone5S would be more appropriate."

But the boy would not relent.  For hours he stood vigil at the edge of the bin, watching the toad as he discovered his new home, and occasionally holding the creature in his small hand.  The toad could tell that the prince meant him no harm, but while there was water and lush green lawn waste to explore, there were no juicy bugs to eat.  Only a piece of wheat bread crust that was "like, so not good" The toad felt the same way.

As the sun began to set, the Queen called the princes into the castle to rest for the night, and the toad was left on the front porch out of the way of the incoming rain.

While the princes took their lessons the following day, the toad tried to entertain himself by singing songs from Frozen, whose lyrics he had memorized from the previous afternoon when the prince repeated them nonstop.  The toad wasn't sure if the songs were intended to be a serenade or a torture method, as he witnessed the Queen sing along at times and beg for the music to stop at others. 

As evening approached and the toad feared he might never see his family again, the Queen lifted him from his gray cell and carried him outside to the castle grounds.  He soon found himself placed in the very spot where he was found by these strange people just one day before.  He was free.

"But I don't want him to go," he heard one prince shout.  "I want to keep him forever!"

"We need to set him free," the Queen explained.  "The King will soon want to mow again, now that he has a zero turning-radius mowing chariot, and we need to give the toad time to find his home safely."

"He's mowing again?!?"  

"Yes, again."

"Can I at least say goodbye to the toad?"

"Of course," said the Queen.

"Bye, Hopper!  We love you!"

And the princes lived happily ever after, more toads just a hop, skip, and a jump away.

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