Who Can Awaken Sleeping Beauty in the Age of Coronavirus?

Mary DeVries
Feb 1 · 7 min read

Maybe Prince Charming isn’t a person.

Photo by Sinitta Leunen on Unsplash

The arrival of the princess had long been awaited. The king and queen loved their child very much. When the wicked fairy first cast the evil curse of coronavirus throughout the land, they sprang into action, marshaling all their resources to bring her safely to the castle from the far distant shores where she studied.

The journey was arduous and filled with challenges and complications as befits any epic hero’s journey. Her first carriage ride through the capital of the far land was canceled.

“We can no longer offer that route,” said the carriage company. “Instead we will whisk you to this other city in another direction and then to the great city of Newark where you will wait many hours before your carriage leaves for the great journey over the sea.”

Newark at this time was a city of great darkness where the curse of the evil fairy had fallen heavily bringing much weeping and gnashing of teeth. But what choice did the king and queen have? They must get their precious princess to the safety of their castle.

The princess set out on her journey. As she made her way to the cursed Newark, a message arrived from her older sister who had already found her own Prince Charming. No carriages were being allowed into or out of the land of Newark.

Whatever was to be done? Prince Charming sprang into action. His parents lived near the land of Newark and would journey to rescue the princess if need be.

While the carriage was still in flight, the brambles that had grown around Newark cleared away and the princess was able to get into and then hours later out of the cursed city.

The next day, the princess was finally safe at the castle. While the curse ravaged the big city of London, the castle protections were holding in this far distant corner of the land.

In the weeks and months that followed, the darkness of the curse continued to spread through the fair isle wherein the castle lay. It also engulfed the larger land of the older princess and her prince. In truth, it crept, twisted and coursed throughout all areas of the known world. The messages of the heralds were filled with alarm.

Still, within the castle, all was well. The princess had arrived with nary a fancy frock and only a single pair of trousers, but she had packed a multitude of board games. The king and queen had scoffed at her packing priorities when first the contents of her copious trunks were revealed.

In time the wisdom of the princess was made clear. In these days of sickness and sequestration, one could wear the same comfy sleeping garments for a fortnight but a source of amusement was as valuable as the goose that laid the golden egg. The King and Queen marveled anew at the brilliance of this child they had brought forth into the world.

In those days the sun shone regularly upon the land. Daily the trio would venture forth from the confines of the castle for a meandering constitutional. They delighted in the ducklings and goslings recently hatched. They watched the newborn lambs frolicking in the fields, innocents with no knowledge of the evils threatening the land.

The day came when the great rulers issued a new degree. Verily they said, the evil is receding from this land. We must remain on guard but surely now ’tis safe to venture forth a wee bit in our own carriages to take our daily constitutional in a fresh area. In truth, one may even visit the gardens of other castles as long as one remains far from people and never breaches the walls of the residence itself.

The king and queen delighted in the presence of the princess. Long conservations were had as they meandered together enjoying the spring brightening the troubled land. Evenings were spent playing games and sampling the local brews.

Trouble and fear were ever-present and their hearts broke for the pain and suffering caused by the curse, but this unexpected time with their dear child was a blessing.

Sadly the day came for the princess to depart from the castle. She must again cross the ocean to return to the large land and begin her apprenticeship for a merchant of great power and wealth.

“Surely you can stay here with us in the castle,” cried the king and queen.

“Nay, verily I cannot,” replied the princess. “For while my labor will be completed via crystal ball from within my own dwelling, this dwelling must be in the same land as the merchant. And in truth, I should need to leave soon enough to return to my schooling anyway. But I shall return when the days are growing dark and the great holidays are upon us.”

And so it was. The princess donned the veil and entered the carriage once more to journey back across the ocean.

Life was quiet in the castle without the princess. Day melted into day. The curse was not lifted but the people began to act as if it was. This curse can not last forever, everyone thought. Surely, this small action is safe. And thus the evil of the wicked fairy’s curse continued to spread even as the warmth of summer shone on the land and kept its insidious pervasiveness hidden.

As the days began to shorten and the nights to lengthen, the king and queen eagerly scoured every missive of the heralds. The curse was spreading far and wide and rearing up with an ugly vengeance. Would the princess be able to return to the castle for the holidays? Each day they worried.

“Evil is creeping closer to our doors,” said the scholars teaching the princess. “Hasten home early before it overtakes you. Stay safely there for two turns of the moon or more.”

So the princess ventured forth again and crossed the great ocean to return to the castle.

The king and the queen were delighted. The medics of the land had decreed that the princess must stay within the castle for a fortnight and avoid contact even with the family but still, she was home.

As time passed it was clear that the princess had escaped the vile illness spreading so rapidly through all the lands. The king and queen rejoiced. Now the happy days of the spring long past could resume.

Alas, the days of ducklings, lambs, and plenteous sunlight were no more.

Instead, darkness and gloom covered the land. The country’s rulers issued a decree. “Great evil and calamitous ruin are upon us. You must remain in your abodes whenever you can. Shield yourselves and venture forth only for necessary supplies and strengthening of your limbs.”

“It will be okay,” the king and queen told each other. “We have our precious princess here. We will be happy together. We can bundle up against the winter winds and rain and walk the nearby beach.”

But while the princess had been spared the great illness another curse had afflicted her. She had been pricked with the needle of sleepiness and had fallen into a deep slumber.

“Come, arise and walk the beach with us,” the king and queen urged the dormant princess. Nary a stirring came from the bed. Each day they would watch the precious few daylight hours flicker and fade while still, their sleeping beauty dozed on.

“Where are the precious hours with our child that we expected and longed for?” the king and queen lamented to each other. “How can she sleep all the hours of daylight away?”

“How can we break this sleeping curse which has overtaken her? The legends have taught us that only the kiss of Prince Charming will suffice, but where can a prince be found in these perilous times? We have no prince in our bubble.”

Many a trick had worked to raise the princess from her slumber in the ages past. While she had long loved her bed, she also loved adventure and exploring new lands.

“Arise and we will journey to this new place and do this new thing,” were magic words compelling her to quickly doff her sleeping garments, gird her loins, and sally forth.

Alas in this time when a cursed sickness controlled the land no adventures could be offered. The beach while lovely could not break the sleeping curse and cause the princess to come back to life.

The king and queen were in despair. Precious days were slipping by as their child slumbered on. No prince charming was to be found to tempt her forth.

“Wait!” said the king one day. “I know a kiss more precious and powerful than that of any prince. I shall rouse the princess from her slumbers this very day and she shall accompany us to the beach!”

“How shall you achieve this wonder?” asked the queen.

“Watch and marvel,” replied the king. He ventured into the kitchen and soon the tantalizing smells of bacon filled the castle.

“Call forth the princess,” the king commanded confidently. “She will arise for bacon’s kiss.”

And so it was that curse was broken. Sleeping beauty stumbled forth from her chamber rubbing her eyes drawn to the plate full of bacon. As the magical meat kissed her lips her eyes opened fully.

“Let’s go walk the beach when we finish our meal,” said the king.

“Sounds good,” said the princess reaching for another slice of bacon.

Thus was the curse lifted and joy returned to the castle.

Who needs Prince Charming when you have bacon.

100 Stories

Thousands of authors writing thousands of versions of the same story.

Mary DeVries

Written by

Writing, wondering, and wandering across three continents. Living, Learning, and Laughing along the way. https://tinyurl.com/MaryDeVries

100 Stories

A contest publication that features the creativity of writers and their ability to tell unique and varying stories.

Mary DeVries

Written by

Writing, wondering, and wandering across three continents. Living, Learning, and Laughing along the way. https://tinyurl.com/MaryDeVries

100 Stories

A contest publication that features the creativity of writers and their ability to tell unique and varying stories.

Medium is an open platform where 170 million readers come to find insightful and dynamic thinking. Here, expert and undiscovered voices alike dive into the heart of any topic and bring new ideas to the surface. Learn more

Follow the writers, publications, and topics that matter to you, and you’ll see them on your homepage and in your inbox. Explore

If you have a story to tell, knowledge to share, or a perspective to offer — welcome home. It’s easy and free to post your thinking on any topic. Write on Medium

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store