The Story of Rapungo.

Once upon a time, there lived a not so charming young lad. He dwelt in the land of lights and loud noises, aka New York. However, his address wasn't 78 Wattle St., New York, NY, 10020, or something jolly like that. This poor young man was a prisoner in a high tower, isolated from the hectic New Yorkers. He was stuck in a dismal, grubby room, and had been since age five. It was a place called Bellevue Institution, where many of the ill- fated souls who've slipped into their own madness reside. In other words, a loony bin, a mental house. Follow? The man in Ward 79, on the eighteenth floor was called Rapungo Bushby.

Rapungo was twenty-two years old, and was astoundingly unique. He had already succeeded to acquire not one, but two separate Guinness Records. His fame, however, was for achievements that weren't exactly smiled upon. They would more likely make your nose wrinkle in deep revulsion.

His first far-fetched feat was his life-long refusal to shower. He hadn't ever washed himself, and the result of this was overwhelmingly nauseating! No one could breathe in Ward 79, except Mr Bushby himself. No one dared to go near him, except one.

His second record-winning exploit was the fact that he had the longest hair on the globe. And no, not head hair.

Armpit hair.

Yes, you read correctly.

On top of his rebellion against showering, this made his odour infinitely worse. Most of his features were no longer visible, buried far beneath extreme quantities of wild, dirty, brown hair. So, Rapungo was trapped in his lacklustre, putrid home, with only one visitor each week. This bold man went by the name of Dr. Duncan Drake. He was a proud, elderly man. His intimidating stature was crowned with a head of crisp white hair. His face was sharp, angular, and scowling. His skin was in desperate need of ironing. With his white doctor's coat and his oxygen mask, he was terrifying. Rapungo dreaded his therapy with him.

***

"Rapungo? Rapungo! Please let me in!" cried harsh voice. The ferocious Rapungo hobbled to the barred door and opened it. A tall man entered.

"Good morning," said Dr. Drake cheerfully through his gas mask.

"'Ullo," scowled Rapungo, sniffing deeply so his phlegm rattled in his throat.

"How have you been?" asked Dr. Drake.

"'Orrid," exclaimed Rapungo, "Been stuck in 'ere, 'aven' I?"

"Well, you know, Mr Bushby, as soon as you accept the fact that you are not in fact, a medieval princess named Rapunzel, you are free to go," sneered the Doctor. Rapungo gazed out the large window that allowed view to the chaos of New York at peak hour.

"That's Miss Bushby," he grunted, and sighed in what he thought must have been a feminine manner. His therapist rolled his eyes.

"Are we going to have the same argument again, Mr Bushby?" he asked tiredly, scribbling onto his clipboard.

"Yep, now get lost, you," growled the hirsute man.

"Believe me, I have no pleasure being here," said Dr. Drake disdainfully, brushing his coat, "but it is my job to tell you that we are in the year 2003, not the dark ages."

"Are not!" Rapungo said defiantly. "I'm a princess! And you are an evil w-"

"I am no witch," snapped Dr. Drake. "Good day, Mr Bushby. I have made this week's evaluation already."

He left Rapungo staring wistfully out the dusty window. This therapy had gone on for seventeen long years.

***

Rapungo was bored. He readjusted his hospital dress, wishing they had just given him a princess gown like he'd requested. Was it so hard? He brushed his never-ending tresses with his fingers. A few moths took flight from them. Out of annoyance that such fine royalty as himself was being locked up in a place like this, he seized his decomposing stool, and hurled it at the window. The windowpane shattered, shards of glass littering the floor. He poked his hair head out of the window, and gulped at the sight of the hectic traffic down below. He hated heights. His record-winning hair brushed against the next skyscraper. I mean, that's a lot of hair, guys.

Then, squinting down, he saw a magnificent vision. The most stunning woman he'd ever set eyes on was cleaning the window three below. Granted, it was the only woman seen, but still, this chick was a knockout. Forgetting totally that he was supposed to be the poor, mistreated Princess Rapunzel, he stood there, his bushy head sticking out the window.

"'Ullo, ma'am," he said. The girl looked up, with diamond blue eyes that twinkled in the dusk sky. Suddenly, at that moment, something so uncanny and mysterious shot between them. It was beyond all logic, but the two knew.

This. was love.

The girl grabbed Rapungo's hair, and attempted to climb up by it as if it were a rope, but the poor man shrieked in pain, so she silently moved her window washing machine up to his window and climbed in. This, thought Rapungo, wasn't normal activity.

"You can't smell anyfink?" he asked in bewilderment.

"No,' she replied in a husky voice. "I have never had the sense of smell. Why do you ask?"

"Oh, nuffink," Rapungo said hastily.

"I'm Sally," said the pretty girl, brushing back her blonde hair.

"I'm Rapunz-" Rapungo stopped. All his life, he'd been insisting that he was a beautiful fairytale princess. Now he felt as though he'd just met one. He had to be honest! Just had to!

".I'm, uh.Rapungo."

***

They talked for hours. Sally almost got fired from her dead-end job of window cleaning. Every day, she went to his shattered window and called, "Rapungo? Rapungo! Please let me in!" and spoke to him. At each rendezvous, they fell deeper and deeper in their insane love. Sally seemed to be blind to Rapungo's less than attractive exterior. It was bliss! A week past.

Then, the day came. A week after their blessed meeting, while the two were sharing a zealous kiss, (very hairy.) a voice shouted, "Rapungo? Rapungo! Please let me in!"

Rapungo stopped dead. "No!" he whispered. "Doh! Sally, you'll 'aff t'go." But there was the scrape of a key in a keyhole, and then the door swung open, and Dr. Drake burst in.

"WHAT IS THIS?!" he roared, and lunged at Sally, but being the nimble thing she was, she dived out the broken window, into her window cleaning machine, and was burning down the side of the building like a little chug boat. The doctor rounded on Rapungo, seething.

"That's it," he said in the deadliest tone, "I didn't want to have to do this, I've warned you-"

"No.No, you can't!" screeched Rapungo and cringed behind his furry arms, "NO!"

"Yes," said therapist, "You're getting. the shave."

"NO!" Rapungo was positively screaming, "NO!"

The doctor punched a large red button on the wall. It glowed an angry red, sounding a shrill alarm. A troop of white-coated men marched in, and seized the screaming Rapungo.

"NOOOOOOOOOOO!" he yelled as they dragged him away.

***

Hours later, cold and sheared, Rapungo sat in his room, miserable. The difference to his appearance was incredible. Before, the hair had hidden his face, but now, his hideousness was visible for all to see, and for all to retch upon seeing. Outside, rain splattered the freshly repaired window. He knew that he was never going to see his beloved Sally again. He was under maximum protection. Beefy, muscular security guards leered at him. Rapungo looked sadly at his smooth, soft hands, longing for his hair and his stench back. There was not a hair on his body, excluding those up his nostrils. And. brace yourselves.they'd forced him to have a shower! It was criminal, what they'd done!

Then, he heard the sweetest sound in his life. "Rapungo? Rapungo! Please let me in?"

And there, he saw the sweetest sight in his life. Sally was peaking over the ledge of the window. Instantly, Rapungo leapt up, seized another stool to hurl at the window.

"Boss, he's getting away!" barked one of the security guards into a walkie- talkie.

Dr. Drake strutted in, his eyes flashing with malice. He held a syringe of anaesthetic.

"You're not going anywhere," he smirked crazily, as the lightning flashed

"Am!" screamed Rapungo crazily, and at the moment he threw the chair, lightning zapped right at Sally's window cleaning machine, struck it, and it crashed to the ground. Sally shrieked, clutching onto the window ledge for dear life. Then, Rapungo saw his mistake. Glass had gotten into her eyes. She was now blind.

"Oooh, crud," he said thoughtfully, scratching his bald head.

Dr. Drake took the opportunity to leap at Rapungo with the sedative, but pushed him!

"NOOOOO!" yelled Rapungo as he slipped out the window. He and Sally both plummeted down the eighteen floors of Bellevue, destined to die.

.But landed in none other than a huge trash bin!

Delighted, not so much to be alive, but more that he was now stinkingly filthy again, Rapungo staggered out of the bin. Rapungo was grinning like a maniac. He was beyond ugly, and because of his cleverness, his sweetheart couldn't see his hideousness!

Perfect!

And so, on the run, the blind girl and the fugitive lunatic, lost in their devotion and insanity, lived happily ever after.