The Princes and the Pee

Once upon a time, there was a young princess named Radish. She had black hair, blue eyes, and red skin. (She's a lizard, you know.) She didn't wear a crown or tiara, but a baseball cap. However, she did wear dresses most of the time, for some reason. Radish lived all alone in her big palace, and she often got bored. So one day she decided to find a prince to play with.

"Ginger!" Radish called. Ginger was her lady-in-waiting and best girl friend. She had brown hair, brown eyes, and green skin. (Also a lizard.)

"Yes?" Ginger came into Radish's room, with a pen and a pad of paper. She wore a blue dress.

"I need to find a prince to play with. But he must be genuine. What's a good test of princeliness, Ginger?"

"Good breeding?"

"Nah, I don't wanna pour over 10 dozen family trees."

"Etiquette?"

"What's that?" asked Radish, picking her toenails with a steak knife at the breakfast table. (She has her own table in her room.)

"Never mind." Ginger stuck out her tongue and crossed her eyes. "Looks?"

"If I cared about looks, I'd be right back where I started, wouldn't I?" Ginger had to agree. The kingdom of Lizardo wasn't known for its beautiful people. "Besides, I don't wanna find some lawyer on the front stoop the next morning with a discrimination lawsuit."
"Kindness?"

"Overdone. Everybody cares about how nice these people are. I should like to have a few fights now and then. Just because I'm a girl doesn't mean I can't scrap." Radish cut up her fried eggs on toast and shoveled them into her mouth with the same knife that had previously been a lint-picker. Ginger gagged and turned greener.

"What about......health?"

"Well.....I don't want a sickly waif. But then again Mister Muscles isn't my idea of a buddy. Just as long as he's not contagious, it's fine with me." Radish sneezed. "Too much pepper or the plague. It's always one thing." She drank her orange juice. "What else?"

"Talent?"

"Ginge, if I want talent, I'll start up a variety show."

Ginger looked down at the paper. "I can't think of anything else."

"I want to find a really unique guy. Someone who I can be friends with, and have fun with, and not feel pressured to marry. Someone fun." She ran up and jumped onto her bed. As she bounced up and down, a piece of newspaper fluttered to the ground. Ginger noticed and picked it up.

"Um, Radish, pardon me for asking, but why do you have a diaper ad in your room?"

Radish jumped off the bed and landed in her blue beanbag chair. She took the paper from Ginger and looked at it. "Oh, this came from the ValuePack envelope I got in the mail. I keep telling them to take me off the mailing list, but do they listen? Nooooo!" Suddenly, Radish's face got an odd expression. Ginger stared at her.

"What's the matter, Radish?"

Radish smiled. "I just thought of the perfect way to choose a prince."

The next day, word was out all over Lizardo that Princess Radish wanted a princely pal. All the princes left their TVs, computers and rocky road sundaes behind and set out for Radish's palace. Well, not quite all of them. Blue had a 6 inch portable set that he was listening to on headphones. There was a huge crowd. When Radish saw how many princes had come she almost fell off her balcony.

("Royalty always stand on a balcony when this kind of thing takes place. No, never in town square, never on top of the monkey bars in the kiddy playground, always balconies. You'd think Radish would have a little more imagination," Ginger mused.)

"Holy Tomato, look at all the princes! How am I ever going to choose the ones for the call backs?"

"Why do you want to be Radish's friend?"

The betagged prince looked at Ginger and Radish, who were sitting at a long table sipping Cokes. "Come on, am I really supposed to answer a schmucky question like that?"

"Yes."

"Okay, because I....well, I really don't want to! My stupid brother put me up to it!" He ripped off his "royal robes". "And I'm not really a prince. This just came out of my toybox." He tossed the cheap cardboard crown in the air and dropkicked it into the trashcan in the corner of the room. Throwing the tag (which read 224509) away, he stumbled out the back door.

"Next!" Radish called.

"Why do you want to be Radish's friend?" Ginger asked.

"Political advantages."

"I plan to poison her and take the crown."

"Popularity."

"Because I'm a very lonely man."

"I......uhhhhhhh,what was my line again?"

"I just darn well want to, that's why!"

"One word; MONEY!!!!!"

"I don't know. Can we skip this question?"

"I have 4 months to live."

"What matters the most to you?"

"Getting elected."

"Taking over! Mua-ha-ha!"

"I wanna be prom king."

"'Will you marry me?'..........too bold...... 'Well, hey chicky, how 'bout it?'.....nah, too country........"

"Oh, are we still here?"

"Being able to brag to all my freinds that I saw the palace of Princess Radish!"

"MONEY MONEY MONEY, uhhh, food and MONEY!"

"Darn it, you ask all the hard ones. Can I pass?"

"It's my last freakin' wish, okay, whaddaya want outta me? A seminar?"

The last prince left the question room. Round One of Marry My Princess was officially over, and Radish had narrowed it down to 5 princes.

"That's pretty good. So, how you gonna choose now?" asked Ginger.

Radish smirked. "Wait and see."

The next day, Radish invited Prince Bob Jr over. His name was Bob Jr because his dad's name was Bob.

"Hello, Bob Jr," Radish said. "Welcome to my palace." She patted him on the shoulder.

"Ahem. Prince Bob Jr," Bob Jr. corrected, brushing her hand off. He removed a small handkerchief from his vest pocket and wiped off his shoulder. Looking at the hankie in disgust, he tossed it over his shoulder. Ginger shook her head. Radish gaped at him.

"Maybe he'll get better," she whispered to Ginger. "Okay, BJ-can I call you BJ?-come on in to my lovely palace." Bob followed her through the front door. As they walked down the long hallway, Ginger noticed as Bob put on a pair of rubber gloves and drew pictures in the dust on various objects, inspected the curtains for miniscule stains, and looked up at the ceiling checking for cracks. He coughed, and quickly slipped on a surgical mask as well. Radish groaned and lead him into the dining hall. She pulled out the chair for Bob.

"Here, sit down."

"Yes, thank you." Bob looked around. "What's with the falls?" There were pictures of waterfalls all over the walls.

"Oh, I just love waterfalls, dear Prince Bob. They are so interesting. I collect pictures of them. Didn't you know?"

Ginger didn't even know.

"See," Radish said, pointing to the posters, "here's Niagara. It's my favorite. Then Angel Falls, and Yellowstone, and oh, geysers too. Old Faithful is here. And I have rivers. Mississippi, Ob-Irtysh, St Lawrence, Po, I got pics of 'em all."

"I.......see." Bob said. His voice was muffled due to the mask. "Are we going to eat?"

"You're hungry? In that case,.......HEY,CHEF!" A capped and aproned young man came out of the kitchen with a tray of...........10 bowls of soup, 10 pitchers of water, 10 cups of broth, and 10 glasses of juice.

Bob looked at the tray. "Where's the food?"

"Oh, didn't I tell you? I'm on a liquid diet now, to help maintain my girlish figure. You just fill right up and don't gain a pound." She grabbed a pinch of fat at Bob's waist. "And by the looks of that, you could stand to lose some weight!" Radish giggled. "I hope it's okay with you."

"Uhhh.....sure." Bob looked down at the food. The chef set it all in front of him. "Aren't you going to eat?"

"I'm not hungry. Go ahead."

Ginger, by this time, had caught on. "Neither am I. Besides, it would be terribly rude not to eat what was set before you. Especially when you're a guest."

Being rude was one thing Bob couldn't be.

"Okay," he said, and lifted a spoonful of cream of chicken soup to his lips. Radish got up. "Where are you going?"

"To put on some mood music." Radish sidled over to the CD player in the corner of the banquet hall. She took a CD from the table it was on and opened the case. Putting it in the player, she winked at Ginger.

"What kind is it.......jazz? Pop? Rock? Classical? Opera? I love opera." Of course you would! thought Ginger, groaning in her head.

"It's actually sound effects." Radish pressed play. "2 hours."

"What's it called?"

"Sounds of the Ocean." As if on cue, water sounds emanated from the player.

"Uhhh....huh." Bob was wobbling a little in his seat. He sipped his lemonade.

Two hours later, Bob was positively bloated with liquid.

"Did you enjoy your meal?" Radish cooed.

"Yeah....great." Bob got out of his seat. "I say,where is the lavatory?"

"Oh, you mean the bathroom. I'm sorry, I forgot to tell you. We're having them all redone. Yeah, I know, not the most convenient time in the world, but the contractor's schedule waits for no one. I guess you'll just have to do what we do." Wink.

"What's that?"

"Go outside. There's a hedge all around the castle; nobody will see you."

Bob turned pale. "But I-I can't do that. It's against my principles."

"Is it against your principles to have healthy kidneys?"

"I........I'll wait."

"Okay. It's too late for you to go home at this hour. Let me show you to the spare room." Radish took him and Ginger down the hallway and up a flight of stairs, Bob hopping all the way. Then she stopped at a locked door, took out a gold key and unlocked it. Throwing it open, she said, "Here's your room."

40 mattresses sat, one on top of the other, in the middle of the room on a tiny bed frame.

"Oh, my. I did it again. This is, I'm afraid, the only room we have. The others are filthy dirty. You like clean things, don't you?"

Bob adjusted his mask.

"It's.....very....high?"

"Are you afraid of heights?" Radish drawled.

"No." Bob said, looking a little better but still hopping.

"Well, I 'll have to strap you in up there. I once had a guest in this very room, and he was such a poor sleeper! Rolled right off and broke both his legs." Radish climbed up a ladder that was propped up against the bed. Bob followed her, a very hard thing for him to do with crossed legs. They continued to the top. Radish jumped on to the mattress and helped Bob up. This time, he didn't wipe himself off. "Just lie down and I'll tighten these up on you." Bob did so and Radish tied up belts across his chest and legs. "There. Sleep tight and don't let the bed bugs bite." Bob looked wild-eyed at her. "Take it easy; it's only an expression." She climbed down and rejoined Ginger at the bottom of the room.

The next day, Radish woke up Ginger and they both went to Prince Bob Jr's room. Radish sniffed at the door. "Nothing."

They went in and found Bob looking very happy and relaxed. Too happy and relaxed.

"Maybe he's......dead."

"Stop it, Ginger."

Radish undid the belts and Bob woke up. "Ahhhhhh! Yes! I'm okay! Yippee!" He ran down the ladder and out the door.

"Let's see........." Radish put on mountain climbing gear and rappeled down the mattress cliff. "He didn't even soak one."

Ginger inspected the bed. "Minimal moisture. Man, where'd it all go?"

Radish produced a clipboard. She put a slash through Bob's name. "Fail!"

The next three princes (Blue, Joe, and Yipes) were miserable failures. Blue cheated them by bringing a gasoline jug. ("Any pot in a storm." Ginger quipped.) Joe only peed through half the mattresses. And poor Prince Yipes lived up to his name. One look at the height of all those mattresses made him give it up right then and there.

"So," Radish said, the day after Yipes had left, "we have one more. Prince Gock." She looked at the photograph. "I think we might have some luck with him."

"Why?"

"Don't you remember Prince Coconut? When he came in, he said he was saving a spot for his friend, who had to go."

"So?"

"That friend," said Radish, "was Prince Gock."

Gock came the next day. He was drinking raspberry pop.

"Hey, are you Radish?"

"The princess herself. Glad to meet ya." She extended her hand to shake, and Gock grabbed it and pumped it up and down vigorously.

Radish pointed at him. "Ah ha HA, I knew that was coming! So, come on in." She put her arm around him and lead him in. Gock did not struggle out of her grasp; as a matter of fact, he seemed very comfortable with it. Ginger pondered this for a minute, then decided to drop it.

They followed the whole plan all over again, but they weren't counting on Gock being so accepting. He slurped down all the food he was given and enjoyed the ocean sounds thoroughly. Both Radish and Ginger at the end were worn out by the prince's enthusiasm, so by the time it was bed time, both breathed a sigh of relief and headed down the hallway with him to the room.

When Gock saw the mattresses, he was wide-eyed and open-mouthed. The two girls exchanged a look of dismay; this was not a good sign.

"Wow............." Gock paused. ".........The ULTIMATE BUNK!" He ran up the ladder and strapped himself in. Radish and Ginger left the room, hopeful.

Gock slept like a rock. Except for the occasional moan, all was peaceful in his Dreamland. The next morning, Radish and Ginger walked down the long hallway to the room. Ginger looked up and put her ear to the door. Then she jumped back.

"Uh, Radish, you open it."

Radish saw the disgusted look in her eyes. "Out with it. What's wrong?"

"It sounds like an ocean in there."

Radish moved to open the door, but Gock must have caused a surge, because at that very moment, the door flew open and pee washed Ginger and Radish all the way through the palace. It drowned the breakfast the cooks had made for them, and the cooks themselves were drenched. Finally, it washed them out to the moat, where they floated, dripping and reeking. A few seconds later, Gock floated out on the top mattress, still firmly strapped in. "Help!" he called, "Get me off!" Radish and Ginger undid him and they all laughed themselves sick.

"Well," Gock asked, bobbing back and forth, "do I win?"

"Yeah! Definitely!" Radish said.

Ginger moaned. "I need a bath.........."

The palace, after all the pee had been cleaned up, was promptly cleaned up. Radish had to use 300 gallons of air freshener, or so it seemed, to get rid of the smell. All the furniture was replaced and Ginger, Radish and Gock all got new clothes and toys. Radish also bought a year's supply of Huggies every week for Gock and therefore the kingdom grew rich off of the stock market. Lastly, they invited all the other princes to a big banquet. Even Bob Jr shed his mask and gloves and participated in a hearty game of tackle football, which his team won. And, of course, they all lived happily ever after, excepting the palace laundresses, who whined and complained about the number of sheets in the wash.

Fin