Brief Intro

Another writing experiment that I decided to do. This was from a really long time ago, but I put it up in case anyone was interested. I'm actually in need of a different title since I don't really like the current one (although if anyone cares to differ, let me know). Feedback, as always, is appreciated. %IF%

Once upon a time, there lived a king and his five daughters. While the daughters were all beautiful, the youngest was the prettiest of them all, with her flaxen hair and dark brown eyes. In happened that it was the youngest princess's birthday, and she received many gifts. However, her favorite gift was a golden ball, which her father gave her. The princess was determined to play with it every day, throwing it up in the air and catching it with a gleeful laugh.

The princess was doing just that in the forest one morning, where she kept tossing and catching her beautiful golden ball. However, she soon made one toss too high and too far, and with a "plop," the ball landed in a deep well. At once, the princess started to sob uncontrollably, for she loved that ball so very much, and she had no idea how she could get it out of the well, as the ball was much too far out of her reach.

All of a sudden, she heard a funny croak, and she looked to the well in surprise. A large, slimy green frog had its head out of the deep water.

"Why are you crying, princess?" asked the frog.

"I've lost my precious golden ball," whined the princess. "I was playing with it but now it's in the well, and it's too deep for me to retrieve it, and I don't know what to do!"

"Fear not," said the frog, "for I do happen to be good swimmer, and I would be able to get the ball for you, if you wish."

"You could?" said the princess, drying her eyes.

"Of course," said the frog, "but I wonder if you might do me something in return, if that is all right with you."

"Oh, indeed, dear frog!" said the princess. "I promise that whatever you want, I'll give you."

"Then, well, I would really like to live with you," said the frog. "I would like to eat from your plate and drink from your cup and sleep on your bed. Would you mind that?"

"Oh, not at all! I promise, if you get it out for me!" said the princess.

At once, the frog plunged into the deep well, and after a while, he hopped out with the great golden ball in its mouth.

"H-hrre uss urrr bhall," the frog said, as talking with a round object in your mouth is no easy task. As soon as he said this, he spit the ball out into the grass for the princess to take. The frog then said, "And now, if you could take me to your home..." but as soon as he had begun, the princess dashed away from the well!

"Wait, princess!" cried the frog, but the princess was too far away to hear him. The frog sat at the well and said to himself, "No matter. I'll catch up with her later."

That evening, the princess was eating dinner with her father and sisters. Suddenly, there was a knock on the door: tiny, but definitely a knock. The king asked one of his servants to open the door. When the servant returned, he looked quite puzzled.

"Well, what is it?" asked the king.

"There's...someone singing on the other side of the door, Your Highness," said the servant. "He's asking for your youngest daughter."

At once, the youngest princess turned pale and but went away. When she opened the door and saw the frog, she slammed it shut at once. She returned to the table even paler than before.

"What is it, now?" said the king. "Some horrible giant come to capture you?"

"Oh, no, Father, it's only a frog," the princess quickly said. "But don't worry about him. He'll go away after a while."

The king turned to his daughter. "What is this about? Tell me." The princess at first refused to say anything, but the king gave his daughter such a stern look that she reluctantly told him about the frog who retrieved her golden ball and that she had promised to take him home and share her belongings if he did.

"You promised?" said the king.

"Yes, but I didn't really mean it, father," said the princess. "It was only a little promise, after all."

"A promise is a promise, and it must not be broken. You must repay the frog for his kindness." said the king firmly. To his servant, he said, "Bring the frog in."

The princess coudn't help but moan as the servant left. A minute later, the frog was brought in on a silken cushion.

"Good evening, Frog," said the king to the frog.

"Good evening, Your Majesty," replied the frog.

"I understand that my daughter is indebted to you," said the king, "and that as a reward, you are to share her belongings, included her plate, cup, and bed."

"That is correct, Your Majesty," said the frog.

"Well, please make yourself at home," said the king. "Come and have dinner with us."

The king ordered his servants to place the frog besides his youngest daughter so that he would eat from her plate and drink from her cup. All this time, the youngest daughter couldn't help but wince in disgust, and her sisters couldn't help but giggle.

The frog looked at the youngest princess and asked her, "May I?" The princess, whose face was quite red, was ready to yell, "NO!" but her father was staring at her with warning, so she merely gave a small, irritated nod. At once, the frog at from the princess's plate wtih gusto, using his long red tongue to lap peas into his mouth, as though they were flies. As he was doing this, the princesss's sisters couldn't help but laugh at the funny sight. The king, however, was quick to silence them. The frog then took sips from the princess's cup in the same way, with the princess feeling sick in the process.

When it was time for bed, the other princesses went upstairs. The princess, however, was determined to leave the frog at her table. At least, she was until her father realized what she was doing.

"Didn't you promise your guest a bed for the night?" said the king. "Bring him up to your room."

So once again, the princess was reluctantly forced to take the frog with her, using merely two fingers to carry him the whole way up the stairs. No sooner had she taken the frog to her room and set him in her room corner, the princess immediately dressed and went to her bed, leaving the frog in the corner. She left the door opened hoping that the frog might get tired and hop away.

The frog then croaked, "Oh princess, please place me on your bed."

The princess did not budge, but the frog then replied, "Please, you promised me." When she refused to get up again, the frog said, "Please, princess, or I'll go tell your father."

At once, the princess started to feel contempt for the frog. "You can't tell him," said the princess. "He's not here."

"I'll go find him," said the frog.

"Then go find him," said the princess. "Leave me alone."

To her surprise, instead of threatening to croak as loud as he could to wake everyone up or continuing to complain, the frog hopped out the door and away from the princess's room. Relieved that her tormentor was gone at last, the princess closed the door and fell soundly asleep in her bed.

Meanwhile, the frog had hopped out of the room. He hopped along the door until he came to a door, which was only slighty opened. Carefully, the frog crept into the room. There, sitting on her bed, was one of the princess's sisters, carefully combing her long, oaken hair. At once she set her eyes on the frog. The frog returned her long-held gazed and smiled. And then, he spoke.

"Hello, Sonja."