Story 16 – The Wood Pixie’s Magic Tree

Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte woke up in Harrowsmith Castle. The sunlight was beaming through their windows as Princess Evie pounced from her bed. Princess Evie was excited! Today was the day they were going to go to the Enchanted Forest and find her magic bubble wand. She put her hair up in pig tail braids, put on her favourite yellow dress she wore when she was happiest, and went to get Princess Charlotte out of bed.

“Charlotte!” Princess Evie said as she shook Princess Charlotte’s shoulder.

Princess Charlotte said nothing. She snorted a big snore, rolled over, and went back to sleep.

“Charlotte!” Princess Evie said, even louder, “You promised!”

“Five more minutes.” Princess Charlotte pleaded.

“You shouldn’t have stayed up late dying Panana’s hair.” said Princess Evie, “but that’s not my fault, is it?”

“I’m up. I’m up.” said Princess Charlotte, sitting up.

“You can’t wear that.” Princess Charlotte said, looking at Princess Evie’s beautiful yellow dress. “You’ll tear it.”

“What do you mean?” Princess Evie asked.

“What did you think,” Princess Charlotte replied, “the pixies were just going to give you back your wand after they stole it from you?”

“I don’t know…” Evie said looked at her sister innocently.

“Oh. I see. You thought I was going to do all the work for you?” said Charlotte, “Well, think again sister! Go get some pants on.”

Princess Evie was deflated but still excited. Princess Evie got changed into pants and a jacket while Charlotte got dressed and strapped on her belt with Jaguar, her sword, and threw her magic shield over her shoulder.

“I assume I can keep these in.” Princess Evie said, pointing to her pigtail braids.

“I guess so. A pony tail would be better.” said Charlotte as she snapped the elastic around her own pony tail. “Don’t worry Evie, those won’t get stuck on any branches.”

The girls giggled and headed downstairs.

When they got to the kitchen grandpa had come to make a special visit.

“Good morning girls!” Grandpa shouted from behind his big iron skillet. “Does anyone have a hug for me?”

“Grandpa!” the girls squealed as they ran towards Grandpa arms open.

After a big hug Princess Evie asked “Grandpa, what are you doing here?”

“Well,” replied Grandpa, “Nanny was talking to King Daddy using magic crystals last night. King Daddy told Nanny you were going to the Enchanted Forest today to get your bubble wand back. Nanny told me that and I thought you’d need a good breakfast before you start your day. I’ve already fed Panana and Curls honey, bananas and oats for you. They’re ready to go!”

“Thanks Grandpa!” the princesses said. “What’s for breakfast?”

“Well,” said Grandpa, “I’ve got some fresh eggs and bacon, I made fresh bread this morning and brought some of that too. I’ve got oats for oatmeal and I have the last of the berries from harvest season and a few apples.”

“Mm!” said the Princesses.

“What’s it like outside?” asked Charlotte.

“It’s a beautiful fall day.” said Grandpa, “No leaves left on the trees in the Secret Forest.”

The princesses continued eating.

“Why do the leaves fall off the trees, Grandpa?” asked Princess Evie.

“Because they can’t stand the cold.” Grandpa replied. “Don’t worry. More leaves will come in the spring.”

The princesses ate until they felt like their bellies might go ker-POW! After breakfast was done Grandpa gave the girls a small bag of berries.

“Nanny packed these for Logan and Marcus.” Grandpa said, “please drop them off on your way past Onipilif.”

The girls were so full it felt like they were waddling out to the barn. Princess Charlotte opened the door for Princess Evie and let out a big burp. Princess Evie burped even louder. The two princesses laughed hysterically as they got onto their winged horse and unicorn and rode out the front gate.

“Say ‘Excuse me!'” Queen mommy yelled from inside a castle window.

Nothing really of interest happened as the princesses were travelling to Daddoo. They were able to move very fast now that Princess Charlotte could fly on Panana and Princess Evie had discovered the magic of Curls’ horn. They were scooting fast south to Onipilif when they saw something very strange up ahead over the road. At first it looked like a cloud of dust or smoke. Then it looked like swirling flies. Once the princesses slowed down enough to get a closer look at the cloud they could see very small pixies swimming through the air around Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte’s heads. A couple got too close to Panana’s nose and she sneezed, sending pixies flying away covered in horse boogers. In all the commotion one pixie slipped forward.

“My name is Willowcress. I represent the pixies of the prairies.” said the pixie. “Please do not be mad at our cousin’s evil deeds.”

Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte, until this moment did not even know there was such a thing as prairie pixies. They had only ever met wood pixies before. Princess Charlotte noticed something sparkling in the air next to them coming out of the grass. Ten little pixies were carrying two beautiful diamond necklaces woven together with fine gold chain and silk ribbon. The princesses held out their arms and the pixies dropped the necklaces into their open hands.

“Take these as a token of our apology and appreciation. They are the finest diamonds and gold to be found beneath the grassy prairies, I can assure you of that.” said the little voice. “We wove the silk ourself and moulded the gold too! Our magic is strong, thanks to you Princess!”

“Thank you, Willowcress.” said Princess Charlotte as the prairie pixies flew back into the tall grass on either side of the road. Princess Evie looked at Charlotte.

“We’re still going to get my bubble wand back, Charlotte.” said Princess Evie, “It’s not for sale.”

The princesses continued to Onipilif. When they arrived they stopped at the market in the courtyard for a snack, as it had been almost an hour since they’d last ate. Lord Logan was talking to the shop keeper and asking them if they had any more berries.

“I’m sorry Lord, there’s no more berries.” said the shopkeeper.

“Here, Logan!” Princess Evie said, excitedly, producing the bag of berries Grandpa had given her.

Logan’s face lit up!

“Marcus will be so happy!” he said as he took a big, juicy berry and ate it. “I’m happy too.”

Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte were very happy they were able to make Logan happy.

“We have to be going.” said Princess Charlotte.

“Oh, right. The Enchanted Forest.” said Logan. “Good luck!”

“How did you know about that?” asked Princess Charlotte.

“Everyone knows. You told King Daddy. King Daddy told Nanny. Nanny told Grandpa. Grandpa told my dad, Lord Mike. my dad told me.” Logan took a deep breath and ate another berry. He spoke with his mouth full, “I didn’t know about the berries though, these are really good!”

The princesses left Onipilif and headed south along the path to the shore. It was a nice fall day outside. Fluffy clouds filled the skies. The princesses enjoyed watching the birds flying through the bare trees chasing after one another. The squirrels were scampering through the fields looking for the last remnants of food to store for winter. When the princesses arrived at the riverbank there was another swirling, sparkling cloud. This time the princesses knew right away it was pixies. Two of the pixies flew forward to greet them.

“I suppose you have something for us too.” said Princess Evie as she rode up to the pixies.

“I am Moonglow.” said the first pixie.

“and I am Slipperlilly.” said the other.

“We represent the pixies of the riverbank.” said Slipperlilly. “Please do not be mad at our cousin’s in the enchanted forest.”

“We cannot offer you jewels in place of your loss like our prairie cousins” said Moonglow,” but we do have strong magic as well. We would like to give you these.”

Two glowing glass flasks popped out of the water carried by pixies.

“This water can heal nearly any wound. They’re yours.” said Slipperlilly.

The princesses took the flasks of luminescent water and tucked them away in their pockets.

As they rode Panana and Curls into the Enchanted Forest Princess Charlotte started thinking.

“Did you know there were Pixies on the Riverbank or in the Prairies?” asked Princess Charlotte.

“No.” said Princess Evie.

“Why would they come out now?” asked Princess Charlotte. “Unless it’s was really important.”

“Don’t take their side, Charlotte.” said Princess Evie. “You promised you would get my wand back. You’d better keep your promise.”

“I will.” said Charlotte.

Charlotte wanted answers. It didn’t seem right that the pixies of Harrowsmith would stay hidden for so long and never reveal themselves until now unless it was important. After a few more minutes of travelling down the trail to the Enchanted Forest the princesses had arrived. They didn’t have to travel long before they were right where Princess Evie had fallen asleep and her wand was stolen. The princesses stopped Panana and Curls and listened. The birds and crickets were chirping. Wind blew through the trees. The princesses could hear the forest. It was quiet and serene, yet full of noises.

“I don’t hear anything.” said Charlotte.

“Neither do I.” said Evie.

“What do you want to do?” asked Charlotte.

“Hey! Pixies!” yelled Evie. “Give me my bubble wand back, NOW!”

“I could have done that.” said Charlotte. “Let’s look around.”

Princess Charlotte lead Panana off the trail and into the woods. Panana tucked her wings close to her body so they wouldn’t get caught on any branches. Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte had to duck and dodge lots of branches as they moved through the forest.

“This is so strange. Last time we were here there were bubbles.” said Princess Evie.

“They know we’re coming.” said Charlotte.

After a few hours of riding around the Enchanted Forest the princesses were getting very tired. They decided to stop and rest a while by a creek. The princesses chose a spot where a mossy log had fallen across the creek. Princess Charlotte looked around and found eggs in a nest and some chives and mushrooms growing around her. Princess Evie lit a small fire and cooked they up an omelette for a snack. Panana and Curls took a drink from the creek and munched on some nearby grass. When the princesses were done eating and Panana and Curls were done drinking they wondered what to do next. Just as Princess Charlotte was getting up to stretch she saw, through the trees, a bubble floating towards her. It was small but it was moving really fast. It was being chased by wood pixies! Princess Charlotte jumped to her feet and darted over the mossy log and into the trees.

“Evie! Bubble! Pixies!” Charlotte blurted out as she left the side of the creek in a panic.

The pixies popped the bubble as Evie jumped onto Curls and galloped into the trees after Princess Charlotte. As the pixies turned around and ran away Panana followed them all into the woods. Princess Evie was not moving as fast through the trees as Princess Charlotte. Being on Curls made her very big which made it hard to get around all the trees. She was losing track of Charlotte as Charlotte darted left and right after the pixies. Princess Charlotte almost lost the pixies when one of them got stuck.

“Help! Help!” the pixie squealed at the top of her little lungs.

Princess Charlotte found her stuck in a big spider web with a black, hairy spider crawling slowly down its web towards her. Princess Charlotte grabbed the spider and tossed it into the woods.

“Thank you! That spider was about to eat me!” said the Pixie.

“What’s your name?” asked Princess Charlotte.

“Lanabark, princess of the wood pixies” the little pixie replied.

“Well hi, Lanabark!” said Charlotte, “I am a princess too. Princess Charlotte of Harrowsmith.”

“I know who you are. You’ve come to take your sister’s wand back.” said Lanabark.

Princess Charlotte picked the little pixie out of the spider web but the spider web was really stuck to her. When Princess Charlotte put her down Lanabark was covered from head to toe in web. It was stuck in her hair and her clothes. Princess Charlotte was trying to help Lanabark get the web off when she felt a thump on the side of her head. She looked to see what it was and an acorn came flying out of the woods and bopped her right on the forehead.

“Ow!” said Princess Charlotte.

“Let her go!” a little voice yelled as another acorn came flying from the trees.

“Stop it, Silvermoss!” yelled Lanabark.

“You know what they’re here to do, princess.” said the voice in the trees.

“Show yourself. I mean you no harm.” said Charlotte.

At that moment Princess Evie arrived on Curls.

“Everyone be calm!” Charlotte said as she held up her free arm.

“My name is Silvermoss. I am the princesses’ bodyguard” a little pixie said as he flew from the trees. He presented himself to Princess Charlotte and began to help Lanabark get free of the webs.

Silvermoss got the last of the webs off of Lanabark. They both leapt into the air and floated before the princesses.

“We know why you have come. Follow us. We will show you to your wand.” Lanabark said.

“Lana, no!” Silvermoss protested.

“It’s the only way for them to understand.” said Lanabark, “this way, princesses.”

Lanabark and Silvermoss floated slowly through the trees. They arrived in a place they had never been before. Neither of the princesses understood how they could have missed this spot in their search. It was a secret clearing in the Enchanted Forest.

“This is our home. You can’t find it unless you know where it is.” said Lanabark. “Please understand the trust we are placing in your hands not to bring anyone else here. This clearing, this tree, must remain a secret.”

In the centre of the grassy clearing the sun shone on an old tree. It was beautiful, silver, and twisted. Its leaves were a mix of colours from orange, yellow, and red to silver and green. It seemed to be glowing dimly, as the pixies did. There were no holes in the tree to live in but the branches were filled with pixies.

“The forest and the pixies need your help. The tree is dying.” said Lanabark

“Why is the tree dying?” asked Princess Evie, looking closer.

“When the ice magic of Daniel McEvil froze the Secret Forest it hurt the forests of Harrowsmith greatly.” said Silvermoss.

“Those woods are north beside Harrowsmith Castle. That’s a long way from here.” said Princess Charlotte.

“Yes. But all the woods are bound together you know. What happens to one tree happens to all trees. The pixie tree gets its power from the woods and we get our power from it.” Silvermoss started to look sad. “Winter is coming. The woods have little power left to give. We are unsure if the tree will survive.”

As Princess Evie got closer she could see her magic bubble wand. It was inside the tree. The tree had grown around it.

“If I take my wand out…” Evie started to ask.

“The tree will die.” said Lanabark.

“I love my bubble wand.” said Princess Evie, starting to cry. “But I can’t take it knowing it would hurt so many.”

“Why have you done this?” asked Charlotte, seeing Princess Evie crying. “Why didn’t you ask?”

“We were afraid you would say no.” said Silvermoss. “We are sorry.”

Lanabark sat on Charlotte’s shoulder and said, “That is why our cousins were giving you such magnificent gifts. Their magic depends on you too.”

“Can I ever have my magic wand back?” asked Princess Evie.

“Your wand, no.” said Lanabark. “But I can give you its magic back if the tree survives the winter.”

Princess Evie was very upset but she knew the right thing to do. She wiped her tears away, stopped crying, sat up tall, turned Curls around, and began to leave the clearing. All of the pixies in the clearing looked on in silence. Princess Charlotte didn’t know what to say either.

“Well then, princess, we shall see you in the spring.” Princess Evie said.

The clearing erupted with cheers of joy and happiness. The light of the pixies and the tree glowed bright while the pixies flew around in circles dancing and singing. The entire walk out of the Enchanted Forest the pixies thanked Evie for her kindness and for saving the magic tree. The pixies thanked Princess Charlotte too for her heroism in saving the princess of the wood pixies from a spider.

When the princesses arrived at Harrowsmith Castle that night they were very quiet. The guards looked on as the princesses put Panana and Curls back into the stable and walked into the castle. They got ready for bed laid in bed looking at the stars through their window.

“I know you’re sad.” said Princess Charlotte, “but you did the right thing.”

“I know.” said Princess Evie

Princess Evie smiled. It did feel good to do the right thing.

Story 15 – The Princesses Go Flying!

It was late morning and Princess Evie was sadly strolling the tops of the walls of Harrowsmith Castle. Yesterday had not been her day. She had lost her bubble wand to mean wood pixies first thing in the morning and then lost the big race to her sister, Princess Charlotte. Now she had nothing better to do on a cool fall day than to watch Princess Charlotte running, jumping, and flying around the castle on Panana, her winged horse. Princess Charlotte’s little dog, Jib, was chasing her all around the grounds.

King Daddy came out of the castle and asked “Charlotte, why didn’t you go to the wall today?”

Charlotte replied, “I already went to the wall this morning. There were no jumping dragons anywhere so I came back.”

King Daddy smiled and said “Panana’s new wings make her fast!”

Charlotte nodded in agreement and King Daddy went back inside to keep doing whatever he was doing.

Charlotte looked annoyed and said to Evie, “I’m supposed to go to the wall and check for jumping dragons every day. I know that. He doesn’t need to ask me if I did what I was supposed to do.”

Evie looked annoyed right back and said, “Panana’s wings don’t maker her faster than Curls!”

“I bet they do.” said Charlotte.

“I bet they don’t!” snapped Evie.

I bet they do!” yelled Charlotte.

“Fine! Let’s race!” said Evie, “and I’ll show you who’s faster!”

“Fine.”

Charlotte lead Panana straight off the wall. The winged horse jumped off and glided down to the courtyard below.

“If I win,” Charlotte yelled back to Evie, “You have to help me dye Panana’s hair for a year!”

“That’s fine.” Evie said, unimpressed, “WHEN I win you have to help me get my magic bubble wand back from those nasty, horrible, silly little wood pixies in the enchanted forest!”

“Deal.” said Charlotte, leaning down to shake her sister’s hand.

Evie dashed into the barn and emerged a few seconds later atop Curls, her unicorn. She had taken off her big dress and was only riding in her leggings and underskirt. She also hadn’t put a saddle or reins on Curls.

“Hang on a minute!” said Princess Charlotte, hopping down from Panana. “That’s not fair.” Princess Charlotte unlatched the saddle Panana had on and it fell to the ground. She took off her belt, sword and shield and leaned them onto the saddle.

“Whenever you’re ready, slow poke!” Charlotte teased as she jumped back up onto Panana’s back between her wings.

“First one to Daddoo and back is the winner!” shouted Evie as Curls’ horn began to glow brightly and Princess Evie shot out of the front gate of Harrowsmith Castle.

Princess Charlotte tore off after her. Panana started to gallop furiously with her wings tucked. Once she was over the drawbridge she spread her great wings and flapped them vigorously. Once, twice, three times and they were airborne! Princess Charlotte dove Panana after Princess Evie. Panana was a fast flyer, and she could catch up a little bit when she was diving from the sky. But whenever she had to flap her wings to regain height or glide Curls’ pulled ahead. Her magic was just too strong! In only a couple of minutes Princess Evie had entered Daddoo, did a lap around the towns square and was bolting back to the castle. Princess Charlotte landed in the town square a few minutes later, did a lap around the square and took flight once more.

Princess Charlotte was chasing her sister as fast as she could. Princess Evie noticed a trail of smoke coming from the mountains and stopped galloping to take out her telescope for a closer look. It wasn’t there. She had left everything behind to win the race. Princess Charlotte landed beside Princess Evie who was now completely stopped and staring up into the mountains.

“What’s going on?” asked Charlotte, “Why did you stop?”.

When Princess Evie didn’t answer Princess Charlotte turned to see for herself. When Princess Charlotte saw the smoke coming from the mountains she immediately thought of Leuco and her three eggs, which were probably baby birds by now.

“Oh no! Leuco!” Princess Charlotte said, “We have to help!”

“How?” asked Princess Evie, “We left all our gear in the courtyard!”

Princess Charlotte and Princess Evie knew what they had to do! They rode and flew as fast as Curls and Panana could ride and fly to Harrowsmith Castle. As they were galloping up the hill towards the drawbridge King Daddy, Lord Mike, and Lord Logan went galloping on Clip, Tick-Tock, and Pew-Pew. The princesses wondered where they were going in such a hurry. It wasn’t like them to run away from an emergency. The princesses didn’t have time to worry! They rode and flew fast and swift.

When they arrived the guards were looking towards the smoke stack now emerging from the mountain. The princesses didn’t even stop. Princess Evie jumped down from Curls and said “Sorry Cu’, you can’t come.”, she grabbed her magic wand and her telescope from Curls saddlebags and headed over to Panana. Princess Charlotte had finished strapping her sword and shield to her back and jumped onto Panana in front of Princess Evie. Princess Charlotte snapped the reigns and Panana ran across the courtyard, leapt into the sky and headed skyward!

As the princesses rode Panana up the mountain the smell of smoke started to fill their nostrils. As they came around the ridge where Princess Charlotte knew they would find Leuco’s nest they saw a little fire burning up Leuco’s giant nest. Leuco flapped frantically at the fire with her wings to try to blow out the flames.

“I guess birds don’t know not to flap wind at fire!” Evelyn said to Charlotte.

“Stop! Stop!” Charlotte called out as they landed on the safe side of the nest and Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte jumped out.

Princess Evie saw a large drift of snow just up the mountain from the nest. She pointed her wand and yelled out “Ka-BOOM!”

Her wand shot a magic blast out it’s end and knocked the snow down onto the fire. Princess Charlotte slipped on her magic ring and started to talk to Leuco.

“Is everyone okay?” asked Princess Charlotte.

“Oh, yes! Thank you so much Princesses! I could have lost my whole nest or worse, gotten hurt!” replied Leuco.”How can I ever repay you?”

“No, no. We’re just glad we could help.” Princess Charlotte said as she started to take in her surroundings. “This is incredible! I can see the whole Kingdom from up here!”

Princess Evie pulled out her telescope and pointed it down to gaze at the Kingdom.

“I can’t see Harrowsmith Castle, or Onipilif, but I can see everything else.” Princess Evie said as she scowled, noticing the bubbles coming from the enchanted forest. “Princess Charlotte. Maybe you can help me get my bubble wand back soon? Those nasty wood pixies are going to have it broken before long.”

“Of course.” said Princess Charlotte, no longer caring who arrived at the castle first. It was a silly bet to begin with she thought.

Princess Evie continued to gaze over the lands. She could see smoke rising from the chimney in Nanny and Grandpa’s cottage, she could see the lake on the mountain and the castle in the mountain on the other side of the Kingdom. The telescope slowly moved over all the lands until it looked upon the great wall.

“Oh, NO!” shouted Princess Evie.

“What?!” asked Princess Charlotte.

“The boys need our help!” said Princess Evie. Evie could see that on the other side of the Kingdom the jumping dragons were running amok. They were everywhere and the guards were scattered.

“That must have been where King Daddy, Lord Mike and Lord Logan were running off to this morning!” said Princess Charlotte. I knew I should have gone with them. You could have handled this.”

“We’ll never get there in time unless we hurry!” said Princess Evie, mounting Panana and putting her hand out to help Princess Charlotte up.

“Panana is not strong enough to get us both there really fast. Get down.” Princess Charlotte said, “I will go myself then come back to get you after I have helped out King Daddy and Uncle Mike.”

“No way! I want to help too!” said Princess Evie.

“We’re wasting time!” Charlotte scoffed!

“I will take you” Leuco said, bowing low for Princess Charlotte to mount her.

“Thank you so much!” said Princess Charlotte as she jumped on Leuco’s back.

Princess Charlotte was not scared this time at all when Leuco took to the skies. They dove down the side of the mountain. Princess Charlotte felt the wind flowing through her hair. Leuco was so fast Princess Charlotte barely had any time to enjoy the ride and they were almost to the Great Wall. Princess Evie flew right behind them on Panana but Panana was not as fast as Leuco.

When the princesses arrived at the wall the guards were running in all directions from the jumping dragons. King Daddy, Lord Mike, and Lord Logan were pinned against the wall by three big, fearsome looking dragons. Leuco dove from the skies and Charlotte drew her sword! Leuco picked up two jumping dragons; one in each claw. Then she flapped her wings and tossed them back over the wall. Princess Charlotte jumped down onto one of the dragons snapping at Lord Logan’s shield. She poked him in the bum with her sword. The dragon jumped back over the wall. Princess Charlotte jumped off on top of the great wall and got back on Leuco’s back. They looked around for more dragons to throw back over the wall.

Evie and Panana dropped down into the middle of a bunch of dragons trying to make off with bushels of grain. Panana bucked and kicked two dragons right in the bum with her back legs. Princess Evie pointed her wand at the rest. Ka-BOOM, Ka-BOOM, Ka-BOOM! and blasted them all back over the wall!

All in all it was a great day. Princess Charlotte got to ride Leuco all the way back to Harrowsmith Castle and Princess Evie flew on Panana. The only problem was when they got there they were fast asleep. The day was so busy they had no energy left at all. Queen Mommy and Lady Millie picked the sleeping princesses up and put them in their beds; safe and sound.

Princess Evie woke up but only for a moment. Just long enough to remember that tomorrow they were going to get her bubble wand back from the mean pixies of the Enchanted Forest. 🙂

Story 14 – A fine time for a race!

There was no doubt about it, fall had come to the Kingdom of Harrowsmith. The air was cooler, the leaves had changed colour, and the sun shone on the Kingdom less and less each day. But, despite the dreary coming of autumn, the Kingdom was a very bright and cheery Kingdom again! The Secret Forest was back to normal. Nanny and Grandpa were home in their cottage in the tree. The squirrels, mice, and woodland creatures of all sorts had returned home. The harvest was complete and everyone was fully stocked for winter. The Kingdom was in such a fine mood that Queen Mommy decided to host a great horse race with a secret grand prize!

“What’s the prize?” Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte pestered Queen Mommy, but she wouldn’t tell.

King Daddy helped Queen Mommy plan out the route and went to make sure preparations were made in every village. It was going to be a long race; two days at least. The riders would have to pick up a flag at the end of each leg of the race to prove they’d made the entire journey. The race route would start at Harrowsmith Castle. The riders would pass through Charvlyn, east to Daddoo, south to Onipilif, north-east through the Enchanted Forest to the Great Wall, west through Abbeyvale, west past Daddoo, through Charvlyn and back to Harrowsmith Castle. The first one to pass through the gates of the castle having retrieved all their flags would be the winner!

On the day of the race the castle was a buzz! Queen Mommy had made all the preparations and King Daddy was busy running around helping where he could.

“Can I help?” asked Princess Evie.

“No.” said Queen Mommy, “Everything is taken care of. You must make sure that Curls is ready for the race. I hope you got plenty of sleep.”

“Alright.” said Princess Evie, “I did.”

Princess Evie was not worried about the race. She knew she was going to win. Princess Evie had been keeping a little secret. She had found out that Curls, her unicorn, can use her magic to make them travel faster. Princess Evie was going to use Curls’ magic to win the race.

When Princess Evie went outside she could see the race was about to start. King Daddy and Queen Mommy had gone upstairs to oversee the start of the race from their balcony. There were 8 or 9 racers on horses. The only ones that Princess Evie recognized were her sister, Princess Charlotte, Lord Logan, and Lady Emma. She went into the barn, strapped her bubble wand onto Curls’ saddle and hopped up.

The riders all lined up in the courtyard. Princess Charlotte was looking very excited to start the race. Princess Evie felt bad because she knew that she was going to win. There was no way that Princess Charlotte could win if she was using magic. King Daddy raised his hand and everyone got quiet. He explained the rules and then said, “On your mark, get set, GO!” The riders were off!

As they galloped over the moat they were greeted by the cheers of the people of Charvlyn who had all come out to see the riders off and celebrate with a festival.

Once the riders has passed through Charvyln they all slowed down to take their time. All of the riders, that is, except for Princess Evie. Princess Evie could feel Curls magic as she raced on past all the other riders and disappeared over the hill and into the village of Daddoo.

When Evie got to Daddoo she was very early. They village wasn’t expecting her for at least another two hours. Princess Evie thought this was a great time to take a break. After all, she had been riding for almost 15 minutes and her bum was starting to hurt.

Princess Evie hopped down from Curls, tied her to a post outside of a restaurant and went inside. Princess Evie thought it was a perfect time for breakfast. Had a glass of apple juice, two dipping eggs, three pieces of toast, four hash browns and five grapes. She talked to the waitresses and other people in the restaurant. She enjoyed the food and conversation so much that she didn’t notice the commotion outside until Princess Charlotte and the other riders were galloping through town.

Princess Evie was startled. She paid for her food, said goodbye and burst out the door. She mounted Curls, grabbed her flag and started to chase after the other riders. The magic of Curls saved the day because before long she was in front again riding hard and fast south to Onipilif. Princess Evie passed the riders she didn’t know first. She then soon passed right by Lord Logan, Lady Emma and Princess Charlotte.

“How come her horse isn’t tired?” Charlotte asked. “That’s very strange.”

Princess Evie was the first to arrive in Onipilif. There was a large celebration waiting for them with music, drinks and snacks. Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma got off their horses and started to dance together to the music. When they realized that Princess Evie had not gotten down off her horse they asked, “Are you not staying, Princess?”

“No. I will rest when I get to the wall.” said Princess Evie.

“It’s almost nightfall.” said Lady Emma. “It might be dangerous to travel the Enchanted Forest at night.”

“I am going to win!” said Princess Evie as she plucked her flag up from a stand in the centre of the courtyard, dashed out of the gate, and headed for the Enchanted Forest. Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma watched her go.

“I don’t think she is having any fun at all.” said Princess Charlotte.

“She just wants to win.” agreed Lady Emma.

Princess Evie was already tired when she set out from Onipilif. Princess Evie saw the sun setting over the ridge as she entered the Enchanted Forest. She was not afraid of the dark but she wanted to get through the forest as quickly as possible so she could get some rest on the other side. After a few minutes of riding Curls began to slow down.

“C’mon Curls!” Evie commanded. “Ya!”

Curls was very tired. She couldn’t run any faster. Princess Evie noticed a sound in the darkness. Soft and gentle singing seemed to be coming from the trees all around her. She looked into the darkness between the trees and it looked like glow bugs were everywhere! She squinted her eyes to get a closer look and realized that there were pixies all around her. They were floating through the air singing softly as she walked slowly through the woods. Princess Evie entered a clearing in the Enchanted Forest. The ground was very soft and the clearing was filled with long grass and flowers. Princess Evie could hardly keep her eyes open. Curls stopped and lay down without Evie telling her too. She put her head down and fell fast asleep.

“Oh! Great! thought Evie. “My unicorn fell asleep!”

The pixie’s singing got louder and more soothing. Princess Evie sat down beside her snoring unicorn and rested her head against her belly. She stared at the stars. The pixies flew all around her sprinkling their dust. Before she knew it Princess Evie was fast asleep.

Princess Evie woke to Princess Charlotte shaking her.

“Wake up Evie! The race is underway! You’re going to miss all the fun!”

Evie snapped up, wiped her eyes and looked around. Lady Emma and Princess Charlotte were standing in front of her. Curls was behind them. She realized that she had fallen asleep and slept in all morning.

“The pixies put me and Curls to sleep!” said Evie.

“We figured that’s what happened.” replied Lady Emma. “Did they take anything?”

Princess Evie looked around. She saw that she had everything, except…

“Oh no!” said Princess Evie. “They took my bubble wand!”

Princess Evie was so mad she could scream!

“You can’t trust pixies for one second!” said Princess Charlotte.

“Nope!” said Lady Emma.

Princess Evie left without saying goodbye. She was very upset that her rushing had cost her her bubble wand. If she had just stayed in Onipilif she would still have her magic bubble wand. She used more of Curls magic powers to race to the Great Wall. As she galloped she could hear the wood pixies laughing and every once in a while a pink magic bubble would come floating her way with a pixie stuck inside it. Princess Evie would pop them as fast as she could. She did not like being reminded of her lost wand.

When Princess Evie reached the Great Wall she was very happy to be out of the forest. She rode Curls up the stairs to the main gate to retrieve her flag. There stood another one of her best friends, Sir Jacob!

“Hi Princess Evie!” sir Jacob said handing her a little flag. “Here you go!”

“How come you’re not racing?” asked Princess Evie.

“Someone always has to watch the wall, you know that.” replied Sir Jacob, “Besides, the fun part is seeing all your friends, right?”

“I guess so.” said Princess Evie.

“Well I get to see all of you when you come to the Great Wall for your flag!” said Sir Jacob, “Good luck! Have fun!”

Sir Jacob went back to guarding the wall. Princess Evie followed him down the wall.

“You know there’s a big secret surprise for the person who wins, right?” asked Princess Evie.

“Of course,” said Sir Jacob, “but winning isn’t everything.”

“You’re only saying that because you can’t win.” said Princess Evie, “You have to work all day.”

“That’s not true. I only play for fun. Sometimes you win, sometimes you lose. It’s how you play the game that matters.”

“Well I’m going to win. I don’t care what you think.” said Princess Evie.

“I think if you are so sure you’re going to win you’d better get going.” Sir Jacob said as he pointed to the horizon.

While Princess Evie had been arguing with Sir Jacob Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma had rode up to the wall, grabbed their flags and slipped away without Princess Evie noticing.

“Hey!” Princess Evie said as she kicked Curls to get her to gallop. Princess Evie rode down the stairs and chased Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma down the road. She used Curls magic to try and catch up to Charlotte but it didn’t take long before Princess Evie realized that Curls was very tired and out of magic. Princess Evie continued to gallop Curls down the road and pretty soon passed Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma again!

Charlotte looked on as Princess Evie galloped past. Princess Charlotte was enjoying her time in the sun having a lovely ride with her good friend, Emma. Panana and Puppet were good friends too. Everyone seemed to be having a lovely time. Everyone except for Princess Evie. All she wanted to do was win.

Just outside Abbeyvale the people kept beautiful gardens. Almost as nice as the garden’s around Nanny and Grandpa’s cottage. Princess Evie saw them and immediately wanted them for her victory. Wouldn’t it be so nice to have a big bouquet of flowers when I ride through the gates of Harrowsmith Castle with my flags, she thought. She hopped down and quickly started to pick her favourite flowers from a flower stand that the people had set up. Princess Evie paid the nice man for his flowers and went to get back onto Curls. Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma came trotting by.

“Having fun, Evie?” asked Charlotte.

Princess Evie responded to Princess Charlotte with a growl! She was going to win this race. No matter what! She said “ya!” to Curls and, once again, they were off and ahead of Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma; but not by much.

When Princess Evie entered the village of Daddoo she was starving! It was well past lunch time and she had not had breakfast or lunch that day. She looked behind her and didn’t see Charlotte. I think I can spare a second to grab a snack, Princess Evie thought to herself. Lady Emma’s parents Lord Cory and Lady Rebecca were the Duke and Duchess of Daddoo. They controlled most of the farm lands and had a giant marketplace in the centre of town. Princess Evie was really hungry but she didn’t know what to eat! She was looking for the perfect apple when she saw Lady Emma strolling through the streets.

“Lady Emma! What are you doing here?” asked Princess Evie, shocked.

“I have to be home for dinner. I couldn’t finish the race.” said Ladt Emma. “It was fun though, wasn’t it?”

Princess Evie wasn’t concerned with fun at all. “Where is my sister?!” she demanded.

“She went around the village. She didn’t want to get slowed down by the traffic in the market.

Princess Evie dropped the apple she was carrying. She found curls and jumped on top of her. Princess Evie burst out of Daddoo in a frenzy! She could see Princess Charlotte way ahead on the hill between Daddoo and Charvlyn. Oh, no! thought Princess Evie. She tried to coax more speed from Curls but it was no use! By the time Princess Evie had caught up to Princess Charlotte she was already in the winner’s circle. Princess Evie had lost.

Princess Evie started to cry. She was so upset that she had lost. Princess Charlotte saw that Princess Evie was upset and she came to her side and raised her arm. They had both ran a good race and they should both celebrate it.

King Daddy and Queen Mommy were looking down from the same balcony they had overseen the start of the race from.

“Congratulations to both of you! But there can only be one winner.” King Daddy said.

Queen Mommy took out the small wool bag that the Cloud Folk had given her after the battle in the skies over the Secret Forest. She pointed her wand at it and it began to float down towards Princess Charlotte.

“For you, my victorious Charlotte, the secret prize is the elixir of the birds.” Queen Mommy said, “Give this to your noble Panana and she shall grown wings and you will travel with great speed. Perhaps even greater than that of our magical Curls.”

Queen Mommy looked at Princess Evie. Princess Evie realized Queen Mommy knew that she was trying to cheat and felt terrible.

Later that night after all the celebrating was done and the party was cleaned up Princess Evie walked into the stable while Princess Charlotte was putting the elixir of the birds into Panana’s water. Princess Charlotte was wearing her magic ring that let her talk to animals.

“This will make you the most powerful horse in Harrowsmith, Panana” Princess Charlotte said, excitedly.

Panana started to drink her water quickly.

“Was Mommy mad?” Princess Charlotte asked Princess Evie.

“Yes, she didn’t like that I tried to cheat to win.” said Evie. “I’m really sorry.”

Princess Charlotte opened her arms for a hug and Princess Evie dove in.

“I love you, sister” said Princess Charlotte.

“I love you too.” said Princess Evie.

“I love my NEW WINGS!” whinnied Panana and stamping his hooves.

The princesses turned around to see that Panana was now a beautiful winged horse.

“Want to go for a ride?” asked Princess Charlotte.

“YES!” replied Princess Evie and Panana.

Story 13 – The Battle for the Secret Forest

The ladies of Harrowsmith, Princess Charlotte, Princess Evie, and Lady Emma woke up South of Daddoo. They were so tired from flying with the cloud folk the day before that they had stopped, climbed down from Panana, got out their soft blankets and lit a little campfire. All three of them were asleep before they could sing any campfire songs. When they woke up the fire had gone out and the air was cold. The horses and unicorn were nuzzling the girls’ hair.

“Curls! Stop, Curls! How did you find me?”, Princess Evie said.

Lady Emma was having the same troubles with Puppet. It seemed that their horse and unicorn had come looking for them when they didn’t make it home to their castle the night before. The princesses were happy to see Curls because Curls had in her saddle the rest of their food from their trip. They lit the fire again, pulled out the saddle bag with the food in it, and, as the sun slowly came over the hills, they nibbled on the last of their bread and dried fruit and drank hot chocolate with little marshmallows in it.

When the ladies finished their breakfast and began packing up their things to be on their way they heard barking in the distance. By the time they were mounting their horses and unicorn, over the hill came Jib, Charlotte’s happy puppy dog, followed by King Daddy and a hoard of mounted soldiers. They were all fully dressed for battle wearing helmets and armour and holding large shields and spears. Their horses were wearing cloth armour too! Beautiful colours representing the Kingdom and all its villages. As they drew closer King Daddy stopped, stuck his spear in the grown and took off his helmet.

“Ladies, you had me worried!”, said King Daddy, “I assumed your mission was a success since the dark cloud is gone, but not having heard from you I thought you might have been hurt. We were on our way to the cloud folk to ask for you when we saw the smoke from your fire and thought we’d investigate. I am glad to see you are all alright.”

“Sorry Daddy. We were just so tired from the battle.” said Princess Evie.

“It’s alright now, let us be on our way.” said King Daddy.

“Where?” asked Princess Charlotte.

“To the castle,” said King Daddy, “we prepare for war!”

All the guards cheered and followed King Daddy as he put his helmet back on, turned Clip north and charged off. Princess Evie, Princess Charlotte and Lady Emma all followed. They loved riding fast.

When they arrived at the castle the princesses noticed there was twice as many guards as usual. Also, the water surrounding the castle in the moat was moving faster than usual, the drawbridge was up, the wind was swirling around the castle walls and gusting towards the flames of the torches, blowing flames into the sky towards the Secret Forest. Nanny came rushing out of the castle followed by Grandpa.

“Good heavens! My angels! Are you alright! You scared me! I thought you were hurt!” Nanny gushed.

“We’re fine, Nanny!” the princesses said together, somewhat embarrassed at the notion that they couldn’t take care of themselves.

The princesses got down and told Nanny and Queen Mommy all about the journey they made the day before, the stairway up the side of the mountain, the woods filled with mean pixies, the floating flowers, the cloud fold, Raven, their leader, the glass vials filled with magic wind, growing wings and the big battle they had witnessed before the destruction of the dark could.

“My! Well! I don’t blame you for not making it all the way home last night after a day like that!” said Grandpa.

Princess Evie pulled the wool bag that Raven had given her from her pocket and handed it to Queen Mommy.

“Thank you.”, Queen Mommy said as she tucked it away in her pocket.

“What is it?” asked Princess Evie.

“It is a gift.” said Queen Mommy. “For trusting them with the lantern so they could destroy the dark cloud.”

“Come!” commanded King Daddy to all of the people in the courtyard. Everyone who knew they should follow did, including Princess Charlotte and Princess Evie.

King Daddy and Queen Mommy sat in their thrones. Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte stood around them in a circle with Lady Emma, Lord Mike and Logan, and the captains of the guards, Dame Becky and Sir Jacob. Everyone was dressed in armour and ready to fight. The doors at the end of King Daddy and Queen Mommy’s great hall swung open and in walked King Christopher and Queen Samantha of Bi’Vrin. The stood tall and walked proudly into the circle. Everyone lowered their heads with respect.

“It seems you have lost something, Brother.” King Daddy said to King Christopher.

“The thief, Daniel McEvil, has stolen something of great power.” King Christopher started. “A black cloak was given to me by King Andrew many years ago and I allowed it to be stolen by this mad man. Daniel McEvil has taken the cloak and used it to create an army of ice monsters and snow dragons in the secret forest. He means to attack the castle.”

“It’s true,” said Sir Jacob, “I saw it with my own eyes. The attack could come at any time.”

“Princess Charlotte,” King Daddy said, “You will lead a hoard of horsemen against the snow dragons.”

“Yes, Daddy.” Princess Charlotte said, standing tall.

“Princess Evie,” King Daddy continued, “Evacuate the village of Charvlyn into the castle walls. Then ride to the village of Daddoo and see that all the people are lead safely to Abbeyvale. Go now.”

“Of course.” Princess Evie said, as she turned and ran from the Hall.

As princess Evie ran from the Great Hall to the armoury she was thinking that she was going to miss the whole battle! It wasn’t fair that Queen Mommy and Princess Charlotte got to go and fight while all she got to do was help get people to safety! When she entered the armoury her armour and helmet were ready for her. She strapped on her helmet, pulled her chain mail over her body and put the Kingdom’s colours over top. She picked up a circular shield, strapped her bubble wand to her back, slid her magic wand into her pocket and she ran out the door. When she went into the barn Curls was also ready to go. She mounted Curls and said to herself. “I have to get this done quickly and then I can come back and help!” On her way out of the barn she yelled “Open the gate!” and she and ten guards raced over the draw bridge to Charvlyn. Curls horn was glowing. Princess Evie wondered what was happening as she rode to the centre of the village.

“Attention citizens of Charvlyn!” Princess Evie bellowed, “By order of the King you are to leave the village and take refuge behind the walls of the castle! Go now!”

The villagers all scurried here and there, grabbing food and clothes and blankets to carry over the drawbridge into the protection of the castle walls. Princess Evie commanded the guards, “Let’s go!” and they all galloped hard towards Daddoo.

Princess Evie was in such a rush. The harder she rode Curls the brighter her Unicorn’s horn became. They were riding really fast. They were at the village of Daddoo in a few minutes!

“How did you do that Princess?” one of the guards asked.

Princess Evie looked around and realized that the trip should have taken all morning and it only took a couple of minutes. Princess Evie looked at Curls and smiled. Her horn was still glowing.

“Curls power must be traveling. Her horn was glowing the whole time we were riding.” said Princess Evie.

“Well it is good for us, and the villagers!” said the guard as they rode to the centre of Daddoo.

“Attention citizens of Daddoo!” Princess Evie bellowed, “By order of the King you are to leave the village and take refuge behind the walls of the town of Abbeyvale! We will escort you but you must come now! Take only what you can carry.”

The villagers of Daddoo did the same thing that the villagers of Charvlyn did. They gathered food, clothes, blankets and began walking to the town of Abbeyvale.

“This will take forever!” Evie complained to herself as she rode beside the walking townspeople.

Curls horn was glowing brightly once more and in only a couple of minutes the people of Daddoo were safe behind the walls of Abbeyvale.

“This is fantastic!” Evie said to the guards. “We ride with all speed to the castle!”

Curls horn glowed brightly as they rode and they were back in the courtyard of the castle before mid-morning. When Princess Evie returned to the Great Hall King Daddy asked “Is there a problem, Princess Evie? I thought I asked you to conduct the evacuation?”

“It’s all done!” Princess Evie responded proudly.

“Very good, then.” King Daddy said. “You can ride with your mother, Queen Mommy’s side. She will be riding with Lord Mike and the Rain Maker, your Great Aunt Beth.

“You all have your assignments.” King Daddy said, standing up, “Make it happen.”

Everyone in the room bowed and filed out immediately except for King Daddy, Queen Mommy, King Chris, and Queen Sam.

“What are we to do?” asked Queen Samantha.

“Stay safe behind our walls.” King Daddy said, extending his hands to them both.

Queen Samantha and King Chris shook Daddy’s hand. King Daddy said, “You’ll have your Kingdom back in no time!” then left with Queen Mommy.

In the courtyard everyone was ready, mounted, and waiting for King Daddy to lead the way. King Daddy and Queen Mommy mounted their horses. Queen Mommy pointed her hand and the gate and a giant gust of wind blew the doors open and the drawbridge down. “Let’s ride!” she yelled!

Hundreds of horses with riders ready to fight poured out over the drawbridge. They formed long lines and started riding towards Nanny’s frozen Secret Forest.

Princess Evie took out her telescope and looked through it. On the giant ice wall she saw the thief, Daniel McEvil! He looked bigger and scarier than before. Princess Evie looked harder and she could see he was wearing the black cloak and casting magic spells.

Princess Charlotte started yelling! “Snow dragons! Snow dragons! Follow me!” Princess Charlotte drew her sword and charged off with a host of mounted guards.

Princess Evie looked harder through her telescope and could see the trees shaking and the ice falling off of them. Then she saw the ice monsters. They were slowly standing up. They were twice as tall as the trees. How were we ever going to stop them Princess Evie thought.

The ice monsters stepped over the wall and Daniel McEvil and started lumbering towards them. All the guards around King Daddy turned to run but King Daddy charged forward. He held up his spear and slammed his spear into the ground. The ground shook. It sounded like thunder. After a few moments dirt giants rose from the ground and tackled the ice monsters to the ground. Lord Mike’s gloves burned bright with fire as he flung balls of fire at the ice monsters. They were starting to melt. Sir Jacob drew his long silver sword. Electricity coursed up the blade. He held it high towards the sky and bolts of lightning struck the ice monsters shattering them into a million billion pieces.

Meanwhile, Princess Charlotte had the snow dragons on the run. Every dragon in the land recognized Panana’s purple hair and the sword Charlotte carried. They quivered with fear at the site of Princess Charlotte alone and now they were beside themselves as Princess Charlotte rode at the head of Dame Becky and a hundred guards on horses. They ran every which way but Charlotte’s line of horses corralled them back into the Secret Forest.

Before King Daddy, Lord Mike and Sir Jacob were done with the ice monsters snow dragons were heading towards them too. The rain maker, Elizabeth used her magic to make the water of the river come crashing over its banks and sweep some of the snow dragons away. Queen Mommy made wind twisters with her magic and sent snow dragons sailing back into the secret forest, landing with a thump. Princess Evie made sure that any dragons that got close to King Daddy, Sir Jacob or Lord Mike were carried away in one of her magic bubbles and put to sleep with a spell from her magic wand.

The plains south of the secret forest were a chaotic mess for most of the day. When all the ice monsters were gone and the snow dragons had ran back into the Secret Forest King Daddy and all his guards, the Princesses, Lords, and Knights all rode towards the great wall. Sir Jacob used the essence of lightning in his sword to blast a hole in the wall around the secret forest and they all went inside.

The princesses and the entire army charged through the Secret Forest looking for snow dragons that hadn’t run away yet and Daniel McEvil. Princess Evie and Princess Charlotte finally caught him, exhausted, trying to escape through the caves where he had pushed Evie. When Daniel McEvil heard the horses coming he tried to hide in a tree. He tried to fire an arrow at Princess Evie, but, with a flip of her magic wand turned the bow into a slithery snake. Daniel McEvil dropped the snake immediately and fell from the tree. King Daddy’s guards showed up and jumped on him. They arrested Daniel McEvil, took him back to the castle and locked him in a tower. King Daddy said that the Witch, Melanie, can bring him whatever he needs, but he can never leave. King Chris got his cape back and he and Queen Sam returned safely to Bi’Vrin.

After the guards had left with Daniel McEvil, Lord Mike raised his gloves to the sky. His gloves, once again, burned bright with heat and light and Lord Mike let loose a giant fireball into the sky. It was so hot it felt like a sunny day in the middle of summer. The ice and snow began to melt quickly. Water was everywhere in big puddles and pools. The fireball burned so brightly that in less than an hour the secret forest had melted and the snow dragons were gone. All the guards had gone home with King Daddy, Lord Mike, Dame Backy, Lady Emma and Sir Jacob to enjoy a party and parade in their honour.

That didn’t sound like any fun at all to Princess Evie or Princess Charlotte. The princesses were so hot and tired they decided they just wanted to relax and take a swim in a pool that had formed near Nanny’s cottage. It may have been autumn but it certainly didn’t feel like it. When Nanny and Grandpa came back to their cottage they made the princesses spaghetti. That night they slept well in their beds at Nanny’s cottage and were happy the secret forest was safe and sound.