Disclaimer: This story is based on characters and situations created and owned by JK Rowling, various publishers including but not limited to Bloomsbury Books, Scholastic Books and Raincoast Books, and Warner Bros., Inc. The plot is from Walt Disney's version of Beauty and the Beast, and I'm not making any profits from this fic.


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Once upon a time,
in a far away land…

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There was a King and Queen. Though reserved and cold, they were respected by all. The royals' vast riches were enough to easily keep the kingdom afloat, and the neighboring lands at bay.

When a Prince was born, the kingdom welcomed the young heir with great cheer, for he was sure to follow in his parents' footsteps, and preserve their prosperous existence. The kingdom was overcome with pride, but none were more satisfied than King Lucius or Queen Narcissa. Celebrations and grand balls were held, and kingdoms from far, far away came to celebrate the birth of Prince Draco and to offer him gifts.

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But unnoticed to all eyes, one man did not celebrate.

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Rather than diminishing over the years of his service to the Malfoy line, the greed and ambition of the King's most trusted advisor, Lord Riddle, had only grown. But he was a cunning man, and before the news of Queen Narcissa's unborn son, he had been waiting patiently for an opportunity to seek his rightful place as King.

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When the young Prince's arrival
threatened to interfere with destiny,
Lord Riddle schemed anew.

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"I am a patient man," Lord Riddle said.

Ever, ever the snake,
he would wait for an opportune moment,
and then claim what was rightfully his.

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The Prince grew to be a handsome young man and the object of much attention. Fed by favor and fueled by power, the Prince's authority was matched only by his arrogance. Lord Riddle watched on as the young Malfoy learned the art of manipulation, the value of superiority, and the necessity of secrecy.

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For years, Lord Riddle endured
pranks, tricks and other humiliating escapades.

The Queen's laughter would ring out like bells
as she and her servants shared a private joke
over her son's disrespectful antics.

"He is only a boy," she chided the advisor. "He means no harm."

"He is more than a boy; he is an heir,"
the Lord would think to himself.

"Yet it is I, the victim of this foolishness, who is the true heir.
And the next King will be no one but I…

for I am a patient man."

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For years, Lord Riddle allowed the young Prince to grow closer to him. He taught the young royal the nature of maintaining appearances, the importance of propriety, and shared with him the indulgences and the privileges befitting his royal stature. Under Lord Riddle's careful guidance, entrusted to him by decree of the royal family, the Prince learned to follow in his family's footsteps.

He instructed well; although Lord Riddle could see the disdain young Draco held for his subjects with sharp clarity, only a select few could see through the charming, persuasive Malfoy façade.

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"We rule for a reason, young Master.

These people below you?

They are dirt; little more than flesh and blood.
Earth mixed with water, young Prince,
and one of the first lessons the best of us must learn,
is to never soil our souls with mud."

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Although fourteen years had at first seemed impossible, the time eventually passed, and the moment to act finally presented itself.

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"I am in need of your services," Lord Riddle declared.
"You will be graciously rewarded."

The witch agreed.

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Not more than a month after this secret encounter, the King and Queen fell mysteriously ill. The kingdom grew grave and sorrowful.

By morning, the King and Queen had quietly passed away.

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The Prince sank into darkness.

Lost in the impossible refuge of his chambers,
he bade no one welcome.

Eventually, those around him grew wise,
and no longer ventured to knock.

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Within the week, many wary members of the kingdom had left and gone, making their way to the neighboring villages of the South. Though the late Malfoy family had been respected and often feared, the memory of a thriving aristocracy and the uncertainty of a young heir were not enough to retain them.

Displeased by the course of events, the witch turned on Lord Riddle, and refused to complete their bargain; she would not be the one to end the young Prince's life. Outraged, Lord Riddle rid himself of this nuisance, and began his search for another ally.

A beautiful young gypsy by the name of Sybill Trelawney arrived from a foreign land. She knew nothing of the kingdom or its shadowed past. Desperate and eager to kill the young Prince once and for all, Lord Riddle concocted an intricate lie, and urged her to accept his proposal.

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"He is young and naïve;
nothing more than a shallow and arrogant shell.
He cares for nothing other than himself,
and his pride will lead his late family to ruin.

Although he has everything his heart desired,
the Prince is spoiled, selfish and unkind.

Rid him of this opportunity, so that we may all be free.

Teach him a lesson…

… And allow me
to bear the burden
of the kingdom instead."

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Though ignorant she may have been toward the malicious motives of the Lord, Sybill was not blind to his hatred and greed. Her senses told her that she would have a part to play in this story, and that she just might be the key to unlocking the paths of their destinies.

When she looked into her crystal ball, she was startled by the sadness dwelling within the explosive young Prince, and terrified of the protective barrier of ice surrounding his bitter heart.

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Fearing not only for the Prince's life,
but also for the lives of those around him,
the gypsy made a difficult decision.

"On the night of next full moon,
the young Prince Draco,
the ward that you have grown to know so well…

Will die."

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For three days, Lord Riddle impatiently awaited the encroaching full moon.

On the night of what would surely bring the attainment of his destiny, Lord Riddle spent hours admiring the details of the opulent throne room. Maids bustled about with their cleaning, the chefs cooked in the corners of their cramped workspaces, and servants of all varieties meticulously prepared the castle for the morning, all with feelings of hope renewed.

At dawn, the Prince would be crowned as the new King.

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"I have been patient," Lord Riddle said with a malicious smile, admiring the gold trimmings.
"And I will be graciously rewarded."

The gypsy said nothing.

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It happened at quarter past eleven.

The grand ballroom was brimming with servants; painters retouching the masterpieces, cleaning staff polishing the finery, and every available maid, page and steward arranging the general opulence into a state fit for celebration.

At quarter past eleven, when the Prince suddenly barged into the grand ballroom, appearing dazed and lost, the servants were caught by surprise. Staggering to the center of the ballroom, the Prince's eyes stared mistily in front of him and a concerned servant cautiously approached their master… but the Prince abruptly clutched his head in agony.

Without warning, a dark, looming storm cloud in the night sky slowly drifted to the side, revealing a giant white orb glowing among the stars.

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The servants watched in horror as their Prince
began to transform before their very eyes.

"Werewolf," whispered the voice of frightened servant,
and his gaze was deathly hollow.

And then the screaming began.

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Suddenly nothing more than a ravenous killing machine, a creature neither animal nor human, the Prince pursued the inhabitants of his castle without inhibition. When Lord Riddle first came to investigate the source of such chaos, having abandoned the young gypsy in the shadows the throne room, he could not believe his eyes.

There, in the corridor beyond the kitchens, was a beast feasting on its prey, a monster tearing apart a servant in a pool of blood. He began to back away, to flee before he offered himself as next in line, but paused when he noticed the strange coloring of its eyes.

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"Blue," Lord Riddle breathed, as a curling sneer formed over his features.
"The eyes of a beast such as this should be yellow,
but instead they are blue… nearly gray… Why?"

Only one had eyes such as this.

"Draco," he spat. "You never cease to ruin everything."

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Lord Riddle's shock receded, and anger swelled within him. He fled from the corridor as the monster made his way through his next meal, speeding through the mob of screaming, running, frantic people to find the gypsy. As soon as the screams could be heard from outside the castle, the remaining townspeople gathered their things and fled; all respect and loyalty to the royal family was gone. The night trudged on, and the slaughter continued.

He searched the whole castle, but she couldn't be found.

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It all started at sunrise.

Just on the brink of slashing another servant down in the wide-open catastrophe of the ballroom, the monster clutched his skull in pain once more. Slowly, groggily, the animal blinked and came to. Looking down disbelievingly at his bloodstained paws, he staggered back in shock and retched.

Gone was the handsome young Prince and the naïve would-be King.

Lord Riddle staggered into the grand ballroom, seething beyond reason, as Draco stood frozen, staring at his bloodied pawls.

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"You are supposed to be dead!" Lord Riddle screamed.
"Why are you still alive? What is the meaning of this?

What are you?"

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The remaining residents gathered their courage, fueled by their confusion and anger, and watched on from the safety of barriers and through the inviting cracks in the doors and windows.

In a burst of green smoke, the gypsy appeared.

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"I am sorry, young Prince," said the gypsy. "It is the only way."

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His slowly recovering human nature warred
with his new instincts, and his form swayed as he moved to speak.

"What did you do to me?" he demanded, but was startled at his new booming voice.

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She smiled softly, and a thousand apologies were written in her eyes.
Draco didn't care about any of them.

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"You," Lord Riddle snarled, his eyes wild.
"You were supposed to take care of him! Not have him massacre the kingdom!

I want him dead!"

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A feral sound tore from Lord Riddle's throat as he lunged for the gypsy, pulling a knife from his flowing robes as he leapt through the air. In a fit of speed so unfamiliar and so foreign to him that he nearly vomited from the shock, the young Prince intercepted his once-trusted advisor and violently threw him to the ground.

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Knife suspended viciously at the juncture of his mentor's throat,
Draco desperately tried to ignore the clawed gashes at Riddle's chest and the pooling blood,
fighting the urge to watch as it dripped and seeped through strands of hair into tufts of fur.

"Why?" Draco rasped.

"You know," Lord Riddle released in a breath of caustic laughter as his eyes started to glaze.
"This is fitting. You were quite the little monster before;
… and now your form matches your soul."

"Why?" Draco demanded, losing his grip.

"Come… now, Draco," the Lord remarked,
and his cough left a spatter of blood across Draco's fur.
"Surely… you know… where…
you went wrong…
in all of…
this?"

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He whispered his final parting words, too quiet for the others to hear,
but before his lips had ceased to move,
the Prince had already plunged the dagger into Lord Riddle's dying heart.

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The creature let out a gut-wrenching roar, his furry arms raised over his head in undiluted fury and pain. It echoed through the hallways of the castle and out into the early dawn. The residents of the castle who were watching stepped back in shock and fear, but did not flee.

The gypsy stood, unfazed. She stepped toward the beastly Prince carefully, and opened her arms.

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"I am truly sorry for what you will go through, your majesty.
But this is for the good of your kingdom, and for the good of your own being.

On the third full moon after your seventeenth birthday,
the moon will shine brighter than ever before.
It is until then that you have a chance to break the spell.

In order to return to your human body,
you must learn to see past the imaginary barriers of status,
to learn to see the good in people you once thought beneath you,
and to fall in love with someone of an impure bloodline.

Should you fail,
you shall remain in the body of a werewolf,
complete with his mind.

In order to keep you company,
because I do feel great sympathy for you,
I shall cast a spell on all those who reside here at the castle.

As a window to the outside world, I shall give a magical mirror,
containing one of your most faithful servants.

Remember…
the third full moon after you've reached the age of seventeen...
It will shine brighter than ever before..."

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And with that, the gypsy disappeared as quickly as she had come.

The servants were pulled with a strong invisible force into the grand ballroom, and colorful lights and sparks danced in the sudden wind that suspended them. Prince Draco watched in horror as they too began to transform.

He watched as his favorite chef became nothing more than a once-beloved cauldron, and the primary artist became a paintbrush. Candlesticks, armories, brooms… And then finally he saw one servant in particular, and helplessly stared as she became a magical mirror, just as the gypsy had foretold. Her true human form was visible in the frame, but when she put her hands upon the glass, she was trapped.

They were all trapped.

The kingdom had neither a shining castle nor a handsome prince. It was no longer a place of prosperity and flourish, and the skies were no longer blue and inviting. The palace, surrounded by many woods and forests, was soon forgotten by many in the villages and towns nearby, and the betrayal of Draco's kingdom became naught but a myth.

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The tragic tale of a Prince who lost everything,
but still waited for someone to come to the castle and break the spell.

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As the years passed, he fell into despair and lost all hope...

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"I'm a monster," he whispered.

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For who could ever learn to love a beast?

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End Note: 9/16/11. Thank you so much for taking the time to check out this story! It's been in the works for many years, including a nearly five year-long hiatus, and I am so excited that it will finally soon be finished.

This prologue has been completely revamped, and as you'll proceed, you'll notice a distinct different in my writing style for the first five or so chapters. I have gone through my original chapters for "survival edits" to improve the quality at least somewhat while I focus on finishing the story itself, but you can expect me to re-edit them in the far-off future… I was only fourteen when I wrote them, after all. :)

Please feel free to leave your thoughts in a review! Thank you, again, for taking the time to acquaint yourself with my story. I hope you choose to continue on!