tales of heroism,

tales of glory,

tales of bravery,

tales of gallantry.

all reserved for the men in pristine armor,

the sword-slingers and the beast-slayers;

those who slaughter the dragon and take its head home

as a symbol of victory.

but what of the girl who befriends the dragon?

what of the girl who believes the real beasts are those disguised in human flesh?

what of the girl too unseemly for royalty and too disobedient for slave work?

well, she becomes the witch of these tales.

replace her dagger with a staff,

replace her words of freedom with apples of poison,

replace her rebellion with a hunched back and a hooded robe.

contort her to the point of becoming a caricature of herself.

this girl is not heroic,

glorious,

brave,

gallant.

this girl doesn't get her own tale.

this girl is the villain,

the monster,

the wicked,

the beast

in his.