The sky was bright and blue. A castle stood slightly in the distance, surrounded by the casual mist that always encases magic castles as such as this one. And magic this one was. Up through the thick forest and rough inclines of the mountains sat this grey castle. This particular mountain was somewhat lonely, now that no self acclaimed hero had come up seeking help defeating a fire breathing dragon or such. In fact, mused the mountain, there was that one fire breather that kept burning down its forests on the one side. Yet it seemed that everyone had forgotten that a sorceress lived in that little castle above the clouds, just waiting for someone to come ask her for help. The mountain sighed, letting more mist drift across its surface.

Meanwhile the sorceress in her castle was mumbling over a cauldron in her dungeon. In front of her was a book labeled "How to Become an Evil Witch for Dummies." The sorceress, much to her own dismay had aged in those long years of no visits and her once beautiful golden hair now was a silvery grey. As aging had taken a toll on her body, the sorceress had begun to need glassed, and gradually found she need bifocals. Bifocals she refused to get, as she was in denial that she was getting old. So here she stood with her nose pressed against the book, trying to read what ingredients she was supposed to add for the "Frog Prince Spell."

"An eye of newt?" the sorceress, whose name happened to Mildred, exclaimed. "Where am I supposed to get eye of newt?" Looking around her dungeon, which was no longer a dungeon but a potion room, she searched for eye of newt. Discovering she had none, she decided to use an eye of a needle as a substitute. She dropped the needle in and it puffed up purple smoke, and left Mildred in a coughing fit. "Oh dear, that will never do!" Mildred, who was known as Millie to her friends, when they showed decided. The stench which was wafting up from the cauldron was unbearable, and Millie searched her dungeon for something to make it, well not smell. "Ah ha!" Millie cried when she found a large bottle of ground cinnamon. "This should do." she said, proceeding to dump the entire bottle into her mixture. The potion retaliated by spitting white sparks out at Millie, who narrowly avoided them by jumping behind her rocking chair.

When the pot settled down from spitting fire, Millie got out from behind the rocking chair and looked at the potion, satisfied. "Now I just need to test it!" Carefully she took a funky shaped bottle and filled it with the potion, which tried to catch her on fire a few more times. Millie simply shook her head at the potion and tsked a few times, and it stopped. In the glass bottle that Millie now held in her hand the potion had turned a deep orange color and was threatening to bubble over and onto Millie's hand. Almost cheerfully Millie stuck a cork stopper into the bottle and put it into a basket.

Millie hurried up the stairs, wincing at the arthritis pain that shot through her knees every step she took. Given her denial of aging, Millie was not taking an arthritis medication either. Once upstairs, Millie put a ragged black cloak around her shoulders, and glamoured herself to look like an elderly lady. (This glamour however was hardly needed, and since Millie had not practiced in a long time, it merely wore off almost instantly.) A broom scoffed from the corner of the grand entrance,(which was no longer so grand) and Millie gave it a sharp look. She had considered taking the broom, but she was still just learning to fly, and walking, she had decided, was much safer, if slower.

And so armed with her potion and her ragged old cloak, Millie set out to find someone to curse.

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Prince Charming observed his reflection in the mirror. Well, he had assumed the name Prince Charming, the name given to him from birth was really Evan, and was a simply squire. And unfortunately, though he was a squire, he was also the least likely to become a knight. Evan had dreams of one day becoming a Prince and marrying any beautiful woman he liked. Every night before he would go to bed he would check his 15 year old face for pimples and wash with a special scrub given to him by the healer down the street. In fact, he was currently preparing for one of the many balls that the real Prince Charming was to be holding tonight. It was going to be a series of three balls, and by the third night, Prince Charming was to choose his bride. However unlikely the chances may be that perhaps one of the lovely ladies dancing at the ball would find him attractive over the Prince Charming, Evan felt the need to be as prepared as possible.

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While the Prince Charming wanna-be was in the squire's wing getting ready for the ball, the real Prince Charming was throwing a temper tantrum over what outfit he would wear. The maids who attended to him had lain out a pair of maroon breaches, a natural colored shirt with a high collar that was rimmed in fancy lace and a pair of very expensive black leather boots. These clothes Prince Charming found simple unacceptable, and demanded that something better and richer be presented to him. The poor maids had gone through his entire wardrobe several times and nothing had pleased Prince Charming. After the three hundred and thirty third outfit tried, King Philipp had knocked on the door, demanding his son be ready in the next few minutes. Knowing he could not deny his father or the king, Prince Charming sulkily agreed to wear the clothes originally laid out for him, claiming they made him seem "down to earth." The maids however, just rolled their eyes and pushed him out the door.

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Another story I'm putting out. It seems whenever I get writers block in the story I'm actually trying to finish, I get all these other ideas that just have to get written down. And some like this one eventually get changed and twisted anyway. This story had started out as a retelling of the ballet The Firebird, but it has somehow changed itself into a Terry Pratchett like fairy tale mix of Cinderella and the Frog Prince. Enjoy!