The Princess Who Couldn’t Say No

Written by Laura Beasley

Once there was a frog with really really big ears.  What?  You’ve never heard of a frog with really, really big ears?  Well, this is a fairy tale; it happened a long time ago, once upon a time, and in a place far, far away . . . .

This frog slept on a green silk cushion because he was the pet frog of a princess.

The wonderful princess

The wonderful princess who did wonderful things

The Wonderful Princess Who Could Never Say No

Her father, the King would remind the princess, “Work hard, study hard, work hard, study hard.”

The princess would work hard, study hard, work hard, and study hard.

Her mother, the Queen would implore the princess, “Sew and spin, sew and spin.”

The princess would sew and spin, sew and spin.

Her little sister, the Little Princess would beg the princess, “Feed me; carry me.  Feed me; carry me.”

The wonderful princess would feed her little sister delectable snacks in the royal kitchen such as strawberry shortcake, carrot chips with ranch dressing, and pizza with extra cheese and pineapple.  She would carry the Little Princess everywhere.  She took her up the tower steps, down the tower steps, through the royal garden and round and round the royal forest.  They would even climb trees together.

Her little brother who was the Little Prince would demand, “Drive me; read to me.  Drive me; read to me.”

The princess would get into her station wagon to drive him to and from soccer, and to and from piano, to and from school, to and from his friends’ houses, and to and from dance classes, and to and from Scout meetings.  The princess would drive for miles and miles, furlongs and furlongs, leagues and leagues.  The princess would read to the little prince for hours and hours.  She read him nonfiction books about cats, the Goosebumps books, the Animorphs books, thirteen books in the Redwall series, all seven Harry Potter books, The Hobbit and the whole Lord of the Rings trilogy, the Illiad and the Odyssey.

The wonderful princess who couldn’t say no went to her friends.  She did wonderful things for them.  The wonderful princess who couldn’t say no summoned her servants.  She did wonderful things for them.  The wonderful princess who couldn’t say no even went to her enemies.  She did wonderful things for them for days and days, weeks and weeks, months and months, and years and years.  And she never told a single person what she thought or what she felt.  She just kept being a princess.

The wonderful princess

The wonderful princess who did wonderful things

The Wonderful Princess Who Could Never Say No

She had one best friend she could talk to, her pet frog.  Remember the frog with the really really big ears?  Every night, she would tell her troubles and tribulations and trials to her pet frog, the frog with the really, really big ears.   The Princess complained, “I did this for them.”  The Princess whined, “I did that for them.” The Princess wailed, “I did such and such for him and her.”  She would complain and complain until she fell asleep.  The Princess would lie on her right side with her hands tucked under her chin and roll to her left side, throwing off her covers.  When she lay on her back, her mouth opened, and she snored really really loudly.

As the days and days, weeks and weeks, months and months, years and years passed, the pet frog with  the really, really big ears kept being the only friend of the wonderful princess.  The pet frog listened to and heard and attended and cared for the princess.

The wonderful princess

The wonderful princess who did wonderful things

The Wonderful Princess Who Could Never Say No

The princess did not change, but the frog went through a metamorphosis of sorts.  The pet frog’s really really big ears began to transform.  As he listened to the incessant whining and complaining, talking and jabbering, whimpering and crying, sighing and moaning, groaning and misery, trials and tribulations, and agony, the ears of the pet frog got smaller and smaller and smaller until you couldn’t see any ears at all.  He just had little holes in the sides of his head.  The princess did not even notice what had happened to her pet frog because she was too busy being a princess.

The wonderful princess

The wonderful princess who did wonderful things

The Wonderful Princess Who Could Never Say No

The princess kept complaining and dumping her emotions on the frog, every night, just as she always had.  The frog could no longer hear most of what she said.   Besides, what she said was always the same and not really worth listening to.  The frog felt lonely at first.  But when it’s quiet, you are able think clearly.  In that silence, the frog devised a wonderful way to rescue his princess.  He had to wait for a full moon when there would be enough light shining on her bed so he could see well enough to put his plan in motion.

The frog didn’t do anything during the next full moon because he was afraid.  Actually, he procrastinated for a few lunar cycles before he was ready to act.  When the day of his quest at last arrived, he spent the daylight hours on the green silk cushion doing dozens of push-ups and deep knee bends.  After the princess had stopped talking and fallen asleep, the frog listened.  He had to listen intently and watch carefully as the princess rolled from her right side to her left side.  When the princess lay on her back, (of course, the royal kitten had climbed onto her chest) the frog heard the princess snoring with her mouth wide open.  The frog watched the mouth of the princess open—wider and wider.  The frog watched her pearl-white teeth shine in the moonlight.  The frog watched the sharp teeth of the royal kitten. When he was ready, the pet frog, the best friend of the princess, did a very dangerous and courageous thing.  The frog jumped inside the mouth of the princess, crawling to a cozy part of her neck where he burrowed in and fell asleep.

The next morning when the Princess took her royal bath, she was washing her neck and she found a lump!  She ran to the King and asked, “What is this lump in my neck?”

The King said, “Work hard; study hard. Work hard, study hard.”

She ran to the Queen and asked, “What is this lump in my neck?!”

The Queen said, “Sew and spin; sew and spin.”

She ran to her little sister who was the Little Princess and asked, “What is this lump in my neck?!”

The Little Princess said, “Feed me; carry me.  Feed me; carry me.”

She ran to her little brother, the Little Prince and asked, “What is this lump in my neck?!”

The Little Prince said, “Drive me; read to me.  Drive me; read to me.”

The princess asked her servants, she asked her friends, she asked her enemies.  And in turn, everyone asked the wonderful princess to do more wonderful things for them.  The Princess stopped asking about the lump in her neck.  She continued to be a princess.

The wonderful princess

The wonderful princess who did wonderful things

The Wonderful Princess Who Could Never Say No

At the end of the day, the princess remembered her best friend, her pet frog.  I have a frog with really really big ears; he’ll be able to listen.  My frog can tell me why I have this lump in my neck.  When the princess returned to her chamber, she searched and searched and discovered that her pet frog was missing.  It was hard to go to sleep without having a friend to talk to.  The princess learned to be without a friend–to be only a princess.

The wonderful princess

The wonderful princess who did wonderful things

The Wonderful Princess Who Could Never Say No

The wonderful princess continued her same life for days and days, weeks and weeks, months and months.

One day, and I don’t know why, when the princess was asked to do yet another wonderful thing, this princess unaccountably said, “No!”

After the princess said no, the lump in her neck disappeared.

Sitting on the green silk cushion nearby was her pet frog.  The pet frog turned to the princess and said, “Kiss me!  Marry me!  Take care of me!”

The princess said, “No!”

The pet frog was transformed into a true prince.  A prince who became the best friend of the Princess Who Could Say No.

You will know that my story is true for I have the scar to prove it.

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