Author: Kouryou Sanomi PM
Sometimes you just can't have a good day. I mean, being turned into a swan instead of your sister by accident, and then having to find a Prince to fall in love with you (even though you're NOT GAY) Geeze, can't a guy get a break?Rated: Fiction K+ - English - Humor - Words: 2,308 - Reviews: 2 - Favs: 1 - Follows: 2 - Published: 09-05-03 - id: 1392456
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
Author's Note: Thinking back on my other original story, Dragon's Cure, I came up with this idea. It is set in the same world...
Warning: Very, very slight slash. Just a kiss. And some hinting.
The Swan Prince
You know the story of the Swan Princess? Well, this is like that. Only a little different...
In a very small country, where our story takes place, there lived a King, a Queen, a prince, and a Princess. Now the princess was very beautiful, but, being the baby of the family, she was also spoiled.
When a powerful wizard came to live in their country, he saw the beautiful princess and fell in love with her. But Sherry scorned the Wizard Bartholomew's advances, and broke his heart. In revenge, he cast a spell to transform the princess into a swan by day.
Unfortunately, the wizard was pretty nearsighted.
So his spell struck her brother instead.
Now, you've heard about the stories where fair damsels are turned to magnificent animals only to have the spell broken by a handsome prince?
Continue thinking along those lines...
Yup. Poor Matthew! Now he must find a handsome prince to fall in love with him to break the spell...
Carlose Ramon Da Costa, formerly Prince of Bmenton of the Many Kingdoms, wiped his sweaty forehead and hoped that he was nearing the end of the forest. It was hot. "Is there a stream round here I wonder...?" he thought aloud. He sat down on a handy rock with a sigh.
"I don't know about streams, but there's lake a few hundred yards southwest of here," said a voice to Carl's left.
"What?!" He turned and found himself face-to-face with... something... Carl scooted back to get a clear view.
He stared. "A... giant... talking... duck...?" Or, at least some sort of large bird with muddy brown feathers.
The... bird... flapped its wings in what appeared to be a temper tantrum. "I am not a duck!" it squawked angrily.
"Then, uh, what are you?"
It glared at him sulkily. "I'm supposed to be a swan."
Carl blinked. "Really?"
"Yes," the 'swan' informed him.
"Well, that's good for you," he said cheerfully. "But I'm off to that lake you mentioned." He got up and headed towards said lake.
"Wait!" the swan cried desperately.
"What?" Carl inquired. "I mean, thank you for telling me where there was some water, but I don't have any swan food on me at the moment so I don't think I can repay you right now."
"Ah... you wouldn't happen to be a prince, would you?"
He froze. "Why would you ask that...?" Carl replied cautiously.
The swan ruffled its feathers in what appeared to be embarrassment. "It's a long story."
Curiosity piqued now, Carl told the bird, "Well, I don't have anything better to do then listen. Why don't you tell me on the way to the lake?"
It nodded in affirmation and waddled awkwardly after him.
"Do you have a name?" Carl wanted to know. He couldn't just keep thinking of the bird as 'it' or 'the swan.'
"Yes. It's... Matthew. What's yours?"
"Eh, you can call me Carl."
"Right then. Well, my story... Um, to make a long story shorter, I'm not really a swan. I'm a prince."
"Really?" said Carl, although it didn't really surprise him. Transformed princes were rather common, although the preferred form tended to be a frog.
"Yeah... I'm not even supposed to BE a swan! The spell was supposed to be cast on my sister."
"Your sister?" Carl blinked. "Why her?"
"Because she refused the love of the Wizard who cast the spell and he wanted to get his revenge... It's just, his eyesight isn't so good, so he missed and the spell hit me. Plus, the spell itself isn't in top form. I'm supposed to pure white, not this mud color. So, are you a prince?" The subject change threw Carl off balance.
"Are you a prince?"
"In a matter of speaking."
"And what's that supposed to mean?" Matthew demanded.
"I am a prince, but an exiled one."
"You are? Why were you exiled?"
"I accidentally hit a dove while hunting."
"And you were exiled for that??"
"Doves are our country's patron animal. There's one on the royal crest."
There was a moment of silence, then Matthew replied. "When you put it that way... There are some pretty harsh laws for harming owls here, too."
"Oh, do have owls on the royal crest?"
"No, but my father really likes owls."
"Yeah. Insanity tends to run in my family." Matthew gave the impression that, if he had shoulders, he would be shrugging.
"Right... So... why are you looking for a prince?"
"Ah..." Matthew coughed and Carl got the impression that if swans could blush, he would be. "You know the spell was intended for my sister?"
"And how most spells that transform beautiful young women into some sort of majestic creature involve a prince falling madly in love with them and defeating the one who cast the spell?"
"Yes. What does that have to do with..." Carl gasped. "You don't mean--"
Matthew nodded morosely. "Yeah. I have to find a prince who'll fall in love with me and defeat the wizard Bartholomew. The thing is, the prince has to come here without knowing about the spell. And do you know how few princes ever travel out of their country?! Not to mention the fact that hardly any of them are interested in other men and even fewer are willing to admit it!" The swan panted briefly to catch his breath after his rant.
"Er..." Carl didn't know what to say. Luckily, they arrived at the lake. "Oh, look we're here! Just in time, too; it's already sunset."
"WHAT?! Already?!" Carl blinked in confusion as Matthew dove for the lake just as the sun sank below the horizon. At that moment it seemed like the whole world froze for a split-second, then started back up again. The swan was surrounded by a muddy brown glow with some faintly greenish sparkles.
Apparently, the swan's feathers weren't the only things that weren't quite up to par with the spell.
Matthew glowed so brightly Carl had to look away for a moment, and when he looked back a young man stood in the swan's place, wearing a long robe the same muddy color as the swan's feathers.
"Yeah." Matthew scratched the back of his head in a habitual gesture of nervousness. Then realized he was up to his waist in icy water and decided it might be a good idea to get out.
"I-in the n-name of S-S-Sehtk, that's c-cold!" Matthew shivered on the bank. Carl thoughtfully covered him with his cloak. "As a swan it's fine, but as human..." He shivered again.
"Are you okay?" Carl asked.
Matthew glared at the ground. "I will be when this spell is off me." His expression turned mournful. "IF it gets off me..."
"Well, it's not so bad is it? I mean, with your looks, it wouldn't be too hard to fall in love with you, I suppose."
"But I'm not gay!" The swan prince howled in anguish.
Carl realized that that aspect of the spell must be what was bothering the Matthew so much.
"The day I'm interested in men will be the day pigs fly!" The Swan prince muttered sulkily.
From behind a tree came a little pig the color of delicate coral pink. It had a pair of feathery, luminescent wings and a bright purple collar with what appeared to be a leash hanging loosely from it. It made a lazy circle about Matthew's head before flying back into the forest. Very faintly came the sound of "Oh, Fluffy! There you are! I was looking all over for you!!"
Matthew stared straight ahead. "I'm not gay," he repeated firmly.
Carl wisely stayed silent. Almost. Sort of. Not really. "What's so wrong about it?"
Matthew shot him a look. "Well, for one, I'm not gay!"
"You said that before."
"I'm also the crown prince. I'm supposed to be the King after my father retires. It's the King's duty to secure an heir."
"Well... is it a requirement for the heir to be your child, as long as it has royal blood?"
"And you have a sister?"
"I take she's old enough for marriage, right?"
"Um, I suppose..."
"Her child could be the heir."
Matthew floundered awkwardly. What Carl was saying made a lot of sense. "But that would imply that I'm gay! And I'm not!"
"You've said that four times now."
"It doesn't make it any less true."
"Whatever. Anyways, who says that the prince has to love you romantically? Wouldn't brotherly love work just as well?"
The not-gay swan prince perked up hopefully. "Do you really think so?"
"Um, no, not really, I'm just trying to make you feel better. Is it working?"
"That's too bad. So... now what?"
He plopped his head on his hands. "I don't know. Unless you're gay, I'm doomed."
"Hunting season starts any day now."
A shot rang out. "CAW?! CAAAAAW!!!!" A few more shots were heard. "CaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaAAAAAAWWW!!" Something plummeted into the forest.
Matthew and Carl winced.
"Ah... Why don't you ask your parents to cancel hunting season until you're cured?"
"Are you kidding? Hunting season is the longest standing tradition in our history! It would blasphemy just to speak it!"
Carl raised an eyebrow. "Alrighty then... So, you want me to help you?"
"Well, what's in it for me?"
"Um... gold and jewels?"
"I've got enough of that at home. I'm only exiled for three years, you know."
"Only? Whatever. What about horses and cattle?"
"Ugh, no thanks. They smell!"
The swan prince was getting desperate now--well, more desperate then he was already. Which is saying a lot. "Uh--Half the kingdom?"
"Sorry, no. Far too much bureaucracy. Besides, I don't think you've cleared that with you parents."
"Yeah, you're right." Matthew slumped. "Name your price. I'll do whatever I can."
"Hm... in that case..." Carl beckoned him closer. "No, closer."
Matthew sighed in exasperation. They were alone in the middle of a forest, not like they were going to be overheard but he moved closer anyways.
"Just a little closer..."
Carl's arm suddenly snaked around Matthew's neck, bringing him close. They were nose-to-nose and Carl smiled brilliantly. He leaned forward and planted a kiss on the Swan Prince's lips.
Matthew's brain was overloading. This was not happening. He was still staring stupidly when Carl pulled away.
The exiled prince smirked at his shocked expression. "Okay, I'll help you."
"In the morning I'll go and challenge the wizard."
"What was his name?"
"Bartholomew, wasn't it?"
"Uhhhhhh... What… Just... Happened...?" Matthew was somehow managing to look petulantly confused. His bottom lip was quivering slightly.
"Don't tempt me." Carl rolled over so he would be able to resist Matthew easier. "You had better get some sleep. You may use my cloak if you like."
"Good. Night. Matthew."
The morning dawned bright and cheerful, which only made Matthew more upset. He would have preferred it to be sullen and rainy. Added onto that was the fact that when the sun rose he was back in his swan form.
He dearly wanted to peck Carl but managed to hold himself back. He did want to return to normal, after all.
The wizard's castle was predictably overlooking a cliff and had a moat surrounding it.
Although the cliff was only about three feet high and the moat was more of a stream. Plus the castle had the suspicious look of a cottage about it.
Carl shook his head. "Can't he even get the setting right?" He sighed. "Anyways, here goes, I guess." He took a deep breath and cupped his hands around his mouth. "OI!! WIZARD! YOU IN THERE?!" he yelled loudly.
Matthew tripped and landed on his face--er, beak. "What kind of challenge in that?!"
Carl winked at him. "My kind, of course."
"I should have known…"
A shaggy brunette head popped out. "Eh?" He peered nearsightedly. "Who's that?"
"Pirates!" squawked a voice from inside.
"Shut up, Mr. Dubly!" The man hollered back. "Stupid bloody parrot," he muttered under his breath. "I wanted a cat. Intelligent animals, cats. But, no, I get this piss-head of a familiar..."
Matthew sighed in exasperation. Carl blinked. "A... are you the wizard then?"
"What? Yes, yes of course. What do you want?" Bartholomew brought his attention back to the other two.
"I'm here about a prince you--"
"Sorry, I don't do Princes! I don't do anything, matter of fact. I'm retired! Find someone else to hex/cure/rescue/curse for you, right, so sod off!"
Carl frowned, starting to get a little annoyed. "Actually, I'm here about a prince you had already cursed," he said, causing Bartholomew to freeze in the midst of pulling his head back indoors.
"Oh, bother. This isn't about the swan thing, is it?"
"As a matter of fact..."
"Bugger. Well, I s'pose you might as well come in, then."