I received a message that a young man had come to the gate. The gatekeeper had barred him from entering the town.
I went down to see who had arrived, and, to my amazement, there stood the only man I have ever loved! I took his hand, drew him to the palace, and in a few days we were married. There is no describing our happiness!
Yet I had to tell him about the cellars. One morning, before going on my walk, I gave him the keys to all twelve of them. I warned him not to unlock the twelfth door. I was very anxious that he wouldn’t listen. I told myself to trust him.
Then, as I was walking along the street, I heard a terrible, familiar shriek. The dragon snatched me and carried me away.
And here I am. Back in the dragon’s empire.
Princess Under the Control of a Dragon in Nine Pea-Hens and Golden Apples, Violet Fairy Book. Illustration by H.J. Ford.