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Once Upon a time there was a young woman. She was about eighteen years old, and lived with her very mean stepmother and her two, also very mean, daughters Isabella and Claire. Cindergoldhood was her name. Her stepmother would treat Cindergoldhood as a slave. Cindergoldhood spent her day doing chores, like tending the gardens, cooking the food, mopping the floors, and tending to her stepmother’s and sisters’ every whim.
One day while fetching the mail, she found a letter addressed to her. She quickly ran into the house and set down the other mail. She opened the one addressed to her. It was from her grandmother. It read:
I would like to
inform you that I have
caught the Flu. I
have a friend living
with me until I am
better. I love you, my
This saddened Cindergoldhood. She asked her stepmother if she could bake some muffins, and take them to her grandmother. Surprisingly, Cindergoldhood’s stepmother said that she could do this. Cindergoldhood was very happy to hear that she could.
She baked her best blueberry muffins, wrapped them in a cloth, and put them in her picnic basket with a few napkins. Blueberry muffins were her grandmother’s favorite. She put on her favorite cloak. It was red and had a huge hood. It looked so good with her beautiful gold locks of hair. “I will be back in five hours!” She called out to her stepmother.
“Be back no later than that, Cindergoldhood!” replied her step mother
“OK,” answered Cindergoldhood.
Then she was on her way through town. When she reached the path through the woods, she knew she was close. She was walking in the woods for about five minutes before she smelt it. What she smelt was the smell of snicker doodle cookies. She walked some more, and then she saw two paths. One lead to her grandmother’s house, and the other lead to a house owned by bears. That smell was coming from the house that was owned by the family of bears.
She could not resist that smell, so she walked down the stone path to the bear family’s house. She knocked on the door, and it opened. She walked into the house, and called out, “Hello, anyone home?”
No one answered. She called again, still no answer. Cindergoldhood was a curious young woman, so she obviously walked in, and started looking around.
First she saw four chairs. She decided that she had deserved to rest her legs after that long walk. After a few minutes of that, she saw four whole trays of snicker doodle cookies. She went over to them, inhaled the wonderful aroma. She picked one up off the first tray, and took a bite. It was burned. She spit it into one of the napkins she packed. Next, she took a bite out of one from the second tray, “Mmm, so good!” she whispered. She could not help but to take no less than five cookies. She wrapped them in a cloth, and put them in the basket.
All of the sudden, she heard voices and steps. They were coming from outside. They were getting closer and closer. The bears were home! She grabbed the basket, ran out the back door and through the gate to her grandmother’s house.
Cindergoldhood fixed her hair, walked around to the front of her grandmother’s house, and knocked on the door. “Grandmother, it’s Cindergoldhood,” she called.
“Come in, Dear. The door is unlocked,” answered Cindergoldhood’s grandmother.
Cindergoldhood walked in sat down in a chair next to her grandmother’s bed. She gave her grandmother the muffins. They talked for about three hours. After that, Cindergoldhood gave her grandmother a kiss farewell, and told her to get well again. “Goodbye, dear child,” said Cindergoldhood’s grandmother.
“ Goodbye,” answered Cindergoldhood, and then she was on her way back home.
As she approached her home, she could see her stepsisters fighting. This was not unusual for them. Little did she know, they were fighting about who would tell her about a letter received in the mail inviting them to a ball at the castle, and that she couldn’t go. As she got closer, Claire and Isabella were trying to cover each other’s mouths. Cindergoldhood stopped in front of them to find out what they were trying to say. They kept fighting to tell her, but couldn’t get a word out clear through each other’s hands. Cindergoldhood knew it would be a while before they could get a clear word out so, she went in to find her stepmother. Her stepmother was waiting for her. “Hello, Cindergoldhood,” Cindergoldhood ‘s stepmother said with a smirk on her face.
“Hello,” said Cindergoldhood.
“Today, we got a letter saying that all the ladies in the house are invited to a ball at the castle, and that the ball was to find the perfect wife for Prince Enchanting,” exclaimed Cindergoldhood’s stepmother.
“That must be what Claire and Isabella were trying to tell me,” Cindergoldhood said to herself.
“The ball is going to be beautiful,” Cindergoldhood’s stepmother said.
“Oh, I can’t wait to go!” Cindergoldhood said excitedly.
“You, go to the ball? Ha! I don’t want you in the way of my perfect daughters’ chances to become Prince Enchanting’s wife. Not like he would have any interest in you,” said Cindergoldhood’s stepmother in the most evil, mean, and coldhearted voice.
“Yeah, he would never like a girl like you,” said Cindergoldhood’s stepsisters.
“Now go finish your chores!” said Cindergoldhood’s stepmother.
Cindergoldhood broke into tears, and ran to her room. After five minutes, she came out, and started her chores. Later, after her stepmother and sisters left for the ball, Cindergoldhood was mopping the floor.
All of the sudden a fairy came out of nowhere. “Who are you?” asked Cindergoldhood starring in amazement.
“I am your fairy godmother, and I am here so you can go to the ball. Now, let us start with a dress. What color is your favorite?” asked the fairy.
“ I like purple,” answered Cindergoldhood.
“Then purple it is, and a crown fit for a princess,” said the fairy.
“Now, what should I turn into your carriage? Ah… I know just the thing,” the fairy whispered.
She walked into the kitchen, opened the cupboard, and picked out a cup. Then she took it outside and sat it down on the street in front of the house. Finally, she made sure no one was looking, waved her magical wand, and turned it into carriage for Cindergoldhood. Cindergoldhood followed the fairy, and watched in wonder as a cup was turned into a carriage. At that moment, they saw two stray cats approaching. With the flick of the fairy’s wrist, the cats turned into two horses that would guide the carriage. Then they saw a mouse scurry out of a nearby barn, and with another flick of the wrist, the fairy had turned the mouse into a man that would steer the horses in the correct direction. With one more flick of the wrist, the fairy fixed Cindergoldhood’s hair to her liking. “Now, get into the carriage, and it will take you to the ball. By the stroke of midnight you will return to your normal self, and so will your carriage, horseman, and horses. This means you should be on your way home at eleven thirty. Goodbye, and have a magical evening, Cindergoldhood,” exclaimed the fairy.
Cindergoldhood got into the carriage. She was on her way to the ball when all of a sudden, a wolf jumped out of the bushes on the side of the road. Cindergoldhood screamed. Then there was a silence. The wolf didn’t move, it didn’t talk, and it didn’t do anything. “Wait just a moment,” Cindergoldhood said in a suspicious voice.
“This is not a real wolf. It’s a fake!” Cindergoldhood finished.
It was made of wood, and it had two signatures on the back. They were Cindergoldhood’s stepsisters’ signatures. It read: property of Claire & Isabella. “Oh my goodness, Claire and Isabella are trying to scare all the other girls off!” Cindergoldhood exclaimed.
Cindergoldhood quickly threw the fake wolf off the road, and they moved on. When they got to the ball, two men welcomed her. As she walked in, everyone’s eyes were on Cindergoldhood. People were in awe. She looked like an angel that had flown down from heaven. Cindergoldhood’s stepsisters envied the mysterious beauty.
Cindergoldhood definitely caught the eye of the prince. He could not wait until he had his chance to dance with this mysterious woman. “Maybe, just maybe, she is the one. The one to be my wife, my princess,” Prince Enchanting said to himself.
When he got to dance with Cindergoldhood, he felt like fireworks going off. Cindergoldhood felt the same. Cindergoldhood happened to glance at the clock. “Oh my goodness, it is twelve o’clock! I need to go, I’m sorry!”
Cindergoldhood rushed out of the castle, down the steps and to her carriage. When she got to the carriage, she realized that she had lost her crown, but it was too late to go back.
Prince Enchanting rushed down the steps after Cindergoldhood, but she had already started home. Prince Enchanting noticed the crown belonging to Cindergoldhood, and picked it up. He took it with him back into the castle. He left the ball, and went to his room. He was up all night thinking about the beauty in purple.
The next day, he noticed some words on the crown. He put his reading glasses on, and read the words. The crown read, “If a mysterious beauty has dropped this crown, look for her in the cloth of a maid.”
The prince immediately gathered all his men, and went to all houses to speak to the maids. Finally, when they reached the house wear Cindergoldhood lived, they explained the situation, and asked to speak with the maid. Of course Cindergoldhood’s stepsisters and stepmother lied, telling the men that they did not have a maid. As the men started out the door, Cindergoldhood walked down the stairs and said in a gentle voice, “I am the maid of this house. Who has asked for me?”
The men turned around, and the prince walked to the front. “I have asked for all maids to identify this crown. I would like to comfirm the identity of the mysterious beauty I danced with last night,” the prince announced.
Then the prince held the crown in his hands. Cindergoldhood said, “Yes, that is my crown.”
“Oh my goodness gracious, it is you!” the prince exclaimed in a whisper.
Cindergoldhood ran to Prince Enchanting. They hugged feeling like they were spinning. Then they shared true love’s first kiss. The prince and Cindergoldhood rode back to the castle.
When they got to the castle, Prince Enchanting knelt, and pulled a box out of his pocket. Cindergoldhood felt her heartbeat begin to race. Then Prince Enchanting opened the box, and asked the question Cindergoldhood had been waiting all of her life to hear. “Cindergoldhood, will you become my wife?” Enchanting asked.
“Yes, yes, yes! I do, I do, I do!” Cindergoldhood answered.
They got married the next week. They had twins the next year, and lived happily ever after without worrying about Cindergoldhood’s stepmother and stepsisters ever again.
Raleigh, North Carolina
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