With a dull thwunk and a guttural sound lives are taken one by one. The heads roll in a perilous succession before the feet of one deemed too virtuous to be wed to any other than the man who passes the test. Head after head is severed from the Princes' bodies as the King's rage cuts through their elegant necks. She thought she would grow accustomed to this and yet it always made her cry. Was there not one man who could pass her father's vile test?
And lo there was! A Soldier of a brave spirit and gentle demeanor; he battled wits with the philosophers and battled brawn with monsters until he emerged before the King and his beautiful daughter. Delight spread across the young woman's face as he answered the final impossible question—there would be no death today! He had looked upon her and saw past her beauty and status answering correctly the colour of her eyes.
But her father was less than pleased. How could a soldier succeed where princes had failed? "Charlatan!" he cried and summoned the executioner forward. Thrusting the young man down upon his knees, the executioner raised his axe. The young man smiled and the Princess screamed as the dull thwunk rang through the castle once more and the Soldier's head rolled to her feet.
Furious with the Soldier's success, the King sent his daughter away to a convent where no man could lay eyes upon her until the King found her a suitable husband. Alone and withdrawn the Princess stayed in the convent for two years until her father's death. Drawn by a strange feeling of longing for the gothic battlements and cold, dark halls of her youth, the Princess set out to return home.
She told no one of her departure, for she did not want to be persuaded to stay in this place of loneliness and silence…