A Kind Heart

Karen Melik (Shakhnazar) February 28, 2017
Kids
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    CHAPTER ONE: THE ABDUCTION OF THE DRAGON
    Once upon a time in a faraway mountain country lived a good king. He wisely governed his Kingdom, but he had no children because was not yet married. The most beautiful girls of the Kingdom wanted to marry him. Especially one charming brunette named Mirella. Though it is not clear what more she wanted to marry him or be a Queen. The king was engaged in the kingdoms’ development: trade and education – so he often went around to the far corners of the country and visited the local schools. And in the evenings he liked to work in the courtyard of his Palace: dilute wonderful overseas flowers and weeded the magic garden. Huge hairy moths in the garden, played with thick green caterpillars hide-and-seek, and the little spider was always released all caught in its web. This Kingdom was known for the hard working people, who were very friendly and did not distinguish between the king and the knight or even the ant.
    This year was blessed. The branches of the trees in the garden bursted with apples and pears, and branches on the currant bushes were bent from heavy and juicy berries. The fields were filled with wheat, children climbed into the garden to eat, but couldn’t eat even one hundredth part of what was there. Not only people, but also birds and animals were well fed and happy.
    One sunny day, in one small school the king met with a smart and kind teacher of drawing. She was elegant and good-looking girl from a nearby village. They felled in love with each other and married (only their parents and friends were present there) and after some time they had a girl, and then another, and then the younger. The people welcomed the birth of daughters and even did not demand a son, as in the country’s history were many good and wise Queens.
    When Mirella found out it, she became very angry that the king chose another girl, and wanted to take revenge, though still didn’t know how. So to start, she paid a visit to the Sea’s Dragon, an old friend of her parents. He had a magic shell called Eternal Spiral of time. This sink gave the power to the Sea King over his brothers: the kings of the Earth and Underground.
    After Royal receptions the Kings’ family loved to walk together, visiting the mountains or the sea and to have their picnics. Low mountains surrounded the castle from all sides; they towered above the clouds, serving as a lighthouse for landing guests on flying carpets. The Royal family was not ever guarded, because the people loved their ruler, and the dragons they had all had long been extinct. The king himself did not take any weapon, except canning knife for a picnic.
    But one day when they were walking along the sea, the sky blackened and covered with clouds. The sea swelled with huge waves, white albatrosses as the ancient dinosaurs penetrated the darkness. A shrill whistle sounded, a strong wind blew, and it didn’t come from the sea, but as if from above. They raised their heads up, not understanding what was happening, and saw a huge blue dragon, which as a kite fell on top of them.
    Father covered by himself the wife and daughters, but the wind swept off him and dragon managed to grab the mother and daughters. Father courageously rushed at the dragon with a knife in his hand and was able to recapture daughters; however Dragons’ poisonous saliva got into the elder daughters eyes
    And the dragon rose up with the mother in his sharp talons, carrying her to the lair. The father then was searching for her for long months, together with his knights, but they always came back with nothing, because the dragon took the mother to the island of the Blue Rocks, where a mere mortal could not go. Having returned the father had long grieved for a lost mother, but the care of the daughters helped him to survive from painful thoughts.
    Dragon’s saliva completely changed the eldest daughters’ sight – they all began to see everywhere the evil and the ugly, and see all people envious and greedy. What’s even worse they gradually became the same by themselves. The eldest daughter by the name Elsa even laughed out loud at the sight of a good man, and the middle daughter Romula scoffed at such, looking for at least something bad. If nothing bad was found, then they simply invented it. In addition they loved to run around the garden, picking flowers and catching Nightingales. Mia – the youngest daughter grew kind and hardworking. She constantly worked at home, in the yard, went to the forest to pick berries.
    Additionally she loved to read old books collected by her father in a huge library in his office in the Palace. She pushed high ladder and, with difficulty, getting to the right shelf, pulled out a dusty book, and then she climbed into the old leather chair, and covered with a blanket, avidly read. The evenings quickly ran away: Mia grew, and her father was getting old. Meanwhile, the older daughter loved to eat, sleep and constantly discussed different outfits, dances and princes from neighboring kingdoms, with which corresponded using carrier pigeons.

    Elsa had golden hair and brown eyes; Romula was plump, medium height, with white as the silver hair and large blue eyes. The junior also had a slender and flexible figure, dark, heavy hair that was slightly curability. Her large gray eyes looked upon them with tenderness and love.

    One winter, when the youngest was returning from the forest with a bundle of brushwood and entered into the snow-covered city, she noticed an old beggar. Cold and evil snowflakes fell from the gloomy sky, circling. A poor old woman, wrapped in rags, cold and trembling was there. Seeing the girl the woman with tears in her eyes asked the girl a piece of bread. Mia, taking pity, gave her all her breakfast, which she did not have time to eat in the forest. The old woman thanked her and said that she is a real enchantress.
    Getting surprised, Mia said, “Poor grandma, thank you for the kind words, but I never knew how to conjure, though all my life I wanted to learn it.”
    After that, Mia closed her eyes with pleasure imagining how she then conjured up a lot of things for dad so he wouldn’t have to work so much and for the sisters who both loved all sorts of decorations and luxurious costumes.
    The old woman patted the girl on the cheek and said, “The most important magic is in you, your kind heart, but I will teach you one spell that will bring you happiness”. Then she tied the handkerchief over her right shoulder, smiled, and said: “Stoory-Shury-pary-boory and slowly melted among the huge and heavy snowflake.
    The girl when saw it was totally amazed, sighed, and went home. A suddenly appeared there dove held her by eyes. As Mia always thought – no spells exist and the woman she saw was just Mirage because of hunger and terrible weather. All that was described in those scientists books at her father’s library.
    The next day the father was going for a business trip to India and promised daughters lovely gifts: “Behave well, take care of the castle and the garden. And tell me what each of you wants most of all, your fondest wish, and I will do everything to find it and bring you back!”
    The eldest wanted a dress, embroidered with gold, to go to the ball to the neighboring king. The average wanted to own blue shoes made of crocodile skin in emeralds to go to the marketplace and to all envied her there. The younger asked a little kitten to take care of him, and with whom she will be able to play every day.
    Returning back after half a year, the father kept his promise and brought, as requested, for the elder expensive brocade dress, for the average daughter – shoes made from the best leather and in precious stones. Kittens in that Indian city were never sold, but, fortunately, when the father was desperate to find him, he accidentally saw near the hotel in the basket somebody mewing, because he was not allowed inside. Neither brothers nor sisters he has, apparently, gone.
    The kitten was gray with black ears, hungry and scared. Father took him and fed with Buffalo milk from a bottle. The next day the father went home, as he reported to the daughters, using latest invention – a bird Tukh – fastest postal bird in the world, with a wingspan of more than 50 meters. She circumnavigated the whole Earth and the whereabouts of people mail.
    And, from early morning the daughter were waiting for the arrival of their father. The noise of the crew was heard and the girls happily ran to greet him. And when the father unwrapped gifts sisters gasped and jumped, clapping their hands. The elders immediately began to try new things and go wild in front of the mirror. And the younger quickly fed the kitten with sour cream and put him to sleep in her room right on the bed. Little kitten curled up into a ball, becoming completely invisible and sweet sniffed. Then Mia went to read to the father cabinet. In the evening Mia as always went to clean the sisters’ rooms, as they demanded that everything was ready until the morning. The kitten, who did not step away from the girl, followed her. Mia has swept the entire room, and then took charge of their dresses and shoes.
    CHAPTER TWO: TRANSFORMATIONS
    The sisters started to laugh at Mia to make fun of, and Mia sighed and whispered, what’d rather she stayed then in the forest. Then remembered something and added with a grin: ” Stoory-Shury-pary-boory”.
    As she just said this, and the whole room was filled with blue smoke and there was a roar as if a shot of all the Kings cannons, and the kitten started crazy swirling, jumped and rolled over 3 times and turned the stately white horse with Golden wings and thick mane. Sisters only gasped at it in surprise and threw up their hands – a gift for the youngest daughter was the most beautiful. Yes my dear readers, even at such a moment their envy took over all other their senses. And sisters rushed to the horse, trying to grab his mane to have him for them.
    “Sisters, my dear, please don’t hurt him,” whispered Mia.
    The horse nickered and bounced, and then flew over the house and sped up skyward. The youngest just managed to stretch out her hands to him, tears filled her eyes, and the horse had already disappeared behind the clouds. Father looked sadly at it from the window, saying nothing.
    It come rainy autumn and then cold winter. All the affairs in the Kingdom have gone awry. Overseas merchants no longer came to them, and didn’t allow to the local merchants to come either, “closed the borders” speaking in the language of the Royal court. It was rumored that someone is spreading gossips that the king in reality is a terrible dragon with the body of a crocodile and birds’ legs. No one around believed in it, but, in any case stopped communicate with them.
    A cold wind put in the yard huge snowdrifts. Father began every morning with cleaning and Mia helped him to make the snow on the street and melt the stove with firewood, which the father pricked the previous evening. Every day was sleeting and long icicles hung from the roof to the ground. In the night snowing started again. The snowflakes, silver and dark, were obliquely flying because of the wind. The snow lay everywhere, in the castle and into the forest, in the Kingdom, in the mountains and flew on further to superosity Islands and distant castles
    On Saturday’s morning dad decided to go to the forest, as they had over the firewood. Before they bought them at the town market, but now money was tight and they had to do those themselves. In the morning father harnessed the horse and cart, took the jar of milk and bread and went to the forest. When he came to the forest the sky was filled with grey clouds and a strong wind sprang up. The trees began to sway from side to side as the grass in the garden. The coming darkness only occasionally pierced by flashes of lightning. Father rode into the wood, and here the sky abruptly darkened and rain began. Its thick jets have wryly snowy land around the forest, helping to finish off the bushes, which were pounced with all the force of the wind. The trees were stronger then bushes and still stand firm, except birch, which decided to surrender.
    Father went into the forest further and further away, hiding from the storm, and not noticing two pairs of burning eyes, which have already watched him. Finally, the father found the edge, secured by heavy and dense crowns of trees as canopy from the rain. The trees were so high that the storm was almost unheard of. Father unharnessed the horse and began to shake off the frozen drops of rain from him. Suddenly a rough voice said to him:
    “By what right your horse tramples on our edge?”
    The father looked back; two big guys with clubs came out from the thicket, one with red hair and the other with black, both in blue cloaks.
    “I’m so sorry,” replied the father, “I did not know. Could I please wait here until the rain is over?”
    “You could, but first must pay!” – said one of the big guys.
    “How much do I owe you for that my horse little pinched the grass?” surprisingly asked father.
    “That much, give us your horse and all the money” – and immediately after that the two attacked the father. Father was strong, but didn’t expect this, and also the second man attacked him from the backside, with the entire span slamming his huge cudgel on the father’s head.
    Father fell stunned, and they bent him, tying his hands and feet. Then they kindled a fire and began to roast duck, stolen in a nearby village. These two have long being searched by the Royal police – they robbed the houses, attacked people in the woods and robbed them. One was named the Red and other the White. No one knew that these two were once brave and good knights, who were bewitched by the evil witch. And now they were eating duck and drinking wine. After drinking wine they fell to the ground and began to snore.
    Father tried to break free from the shackles, but the nodes were made strong. Hands and feet became numb; the branches of the tree began to drip drops of rain, rolled down from the upper branches. He began to freeze. It came night.
    Suddenly he heard a faint mew, then again, and now closer. “Kitty, kitty,” he called quietly. And an old woman with a basket in her hand appeared before him.
    “Haven’t you got some milk as my kittens are hungry?” – asked an old woman.
    “There is some in the jar; it will be my pleasure to give it to him, if you help me to untie my hands and feet”
    The old unexpectedly nimbly untied the strong nodes and father sat down, rubbing his numbed hands. Then he took the jar out of the carts, giving it to the kittens, and also pancakes, dividing them in half with the old lady.
    “It seems you are a good man,” said the old woman. “If you want, I can give you these kittens.” The ones by this time already fully ate and snuffled sweetly in the basket.
    “Thank you so much, with great pleasure, my daughters will be very happy. If you want, I will take you to the village”.
    “Thank you, I’m here like at home” – and the old woman disappeared. Father harnessed the horse and went home. It was already morning and the darkness gradually dissipated. He soon left the forest and went by the road. Unfortunately it was without the firewood, but with beautiful kittens. He again didn’t notice as the robbers stealthily followed him, and that behind him white dove was flying.
    Mia met father at the far exit of the forest. She didn’t sleep all night, waiting for him. Having ridden up to her father wearily got out of the carriage and firmly hugged Mia ran up to him. Then he took a basket of kittens and gave it to the girl.
    “Thanks dad, but it’s for my sisters”.
    “But you don’t have a kitten, he flew away”
    “It doesn’t matter, I’m sure, he’ll be back, I feel so, and the sisters do not have any.
    “Well, as you wish,” said the father, and they went home
    Elder sisters immediately grabbed the kittens and fed them with milk, awaiting transformation into Pegasus. And the father with difficulty pulled the strongbox with an axe and a handsaw and carried that to his office.
    “Yes, it will be hard without money, but well, what else we have there in abundance: flour and grits” he thought. So we will survive winter and after I will borrow some money from my kings’ friends and go to the overseas as before.
    The girls just didn’t notice anything else as were fully occupied with the kittens. Mia stroked their fur, and the elder were waiting for the transformation. But nothing happened – kittens happily lapped milk and purred with pleasure. Elder sisters angrily looked at each other and hissed at the younger:
    “It’s you again – you did something, and say, how you turned your kitten into Pegasus?” Mia sadly looked at them, but said nothing. Then the older grabbed painfully Mia’s arm, and the average sister yanked her hair.
    “Tell us now, what you think about us, aren’t we your sisters?”
    “Of course, you are my sisters” – said she happily. And then she closed her eyes and said:
    “Stoory-Shury-pary-Boory”, but again nothing happened. Mia looked up in surprise, not understanding what was happening. Her sisters something hissed and kicked kittens on the street. And storm was starting outside again: thunder began to shake the earth, the wind rushed with heavy snow flakes, fading away after hitting the walls and roof of the house.
    Mia ran out onto the street where the kittens plaintive squeak. Lightning flashed right next to the house, lighting up and two big guys, who were watching from behind cover. Now the rain fell on the ground and the roof, pounding on it with cold streams of water and destroying the last of the snowflakes. She saw two poorly dressed men, weeping in the rain and looking plaintively at her. Mia hid kittens in her bosom, and called the beggars (as she thought) into the house to wait out the rain.
    At this moment, the storm suddenly ceased, and a big rainbow appeared in the sky. Was it night or day? Or winter had urgently to get back to the North?
    Seeing this Elsa rushed into the Mia’s room, grabbed her kittens and again threw them into the street. The robbers picked up the kittens and warmed on the chest. And the nature as has been frozen on the ground for a moment, complete silence fell.
    Then again there arose a great wind that knocked over even a huge barrel of melted snow in the yard, thundered thunder, and the robbers turned into two knights, and the kittens turned into two horses: one knight had a bay horse, and the other white with black mane. Seeing this the sisters became speechless and got flushed with envy and anger. Father ran out of the house with a sword in his hand when hear the noise and rumble.
    “Get out from my daughters!” – he cried at the knights. But they said nothing, but just stood in front of him on the knees, holding in outstretched hands their swords.
    “Honorable king” – they turned to the father together. “We fell in love with your daughters at first sight”.
    The knight in red armor bowed Elsa, and in white armor bowed Romula. Then they continued: “Evil witch turned us in rogues, but thanks to you we were again people. Our salvation we owe to you until our death and are willing to do anything to thank you. We are brothers and our castles are three days away from your Palace. And we are serving to our young king – Golden knight. He rules Tetlania”. Yes, earlier in the past the father often visited that Kingdom, until it fell into disrepair when the kings’ the only son was gone. Unable to bear the grief the king of Tetlania died.
    After that the elder sisters in tears rushed to apologize to the younger, and kind Mia, of course, hugged and forgave them. The father asked the knights to stand up and solemnly agreed to give his elder daughters to them in marriage.
    The sky slowly began to dawn, the clouds parted and all saw the Pegasus. He has done one circle over the house ended at the feet of the youngest, with his head on her shoulder. Mia kissed him and began to comb his lush mane. The knights lifted sisters on the horses and came together to them.
    Then someone knocked at the house, Mia ran to open the door, and there had been an old woman in a black cloak. The younger girl happily embraced her – that is the beggar woman, which she helped to and who taught her the magic words. Father with reverence said hello shook – she saved his life in the forest and he bought her kittens for the daughters. The old woman smiled all of them and said that actually her name is Dadona, and she is a good witch. And Mia had a really kind heart and all the magic that happened, became possible only thanks to her, and the spell actually, didn’t play any role.
    Father smiled sadly: “She has a kind heart from her mother, which unfortunately for a very long time was kidnapped by a dragon. I’m perfectly happy seeing you all here, only one thing is missing for a complete happiness is to find our mother.”
    The old woman sadly said: “This wicked witch Mirella made so that the dragon kidnapped your mother because you didn’t want to take her to wife. But if the last evil magic will end, Mirella will disappear forever.”
    And do you know how to find her?”
    «Certainly, I will show you the way, but it will be a hard road»
    «Then, all, let’s go!» – Grandly exclaimed the father!

    CHAPTER THREE: FINAL BATTLE
    The sisters with the knights sat on winged steeds, the father and the youngest on Pegasus, and the old woman turned into white dove, and flew ahead, pointing the way. They travelled a very long way, flew over the dense forests, over mountains and plains, until they saw in the distance the castle of the dragon. It was on the island, surrounded on all sides by cliffs. The castle stood on the top of one of these cliffs, the big Blue rock that hung over the vast raging ocean. Huge winged lizards ran over the black waves and their cries heart sank.
    Everybody stopped not knowing what to do. Then Dadona waved her magic wand and a red wooden bridge has spread from land to the island. And they rode up to the castle. The knight in red armor pulled out a hunting horn and loudly blew, causing the dragon to fight. In response, a shrill whistle sounded. It is the dragon heard the call and leaned out the window of his castle.
    “Yes, indeed, far below, on the horses, the people who came to kill him”, thought the dragon, and it was common for him.
    He lived in his huge castle for many years and has won thousands of brave knights, who challenged him for a fight. Well, may be a little less then thousands, there are different opinions on this. He had to kill them, and then to eat. But honestly, he had a very good cook, which perfectly cooked fish dishes. And more than anything else the dragon loved fried fish, but not the brave knights. But it’s time to go to battle, it’s his work anyway.
    A powerful roar shook the air and the flames seared stone walls of the castle. Dragon jumped down as a stone and flew into knights and father. It started a brutal and bloody battle: dragon spew flames and threw down great stones, which were detached from the rock by his powerful claws. And now the father is wounded by a heavy stone, his beard burned by the flames, but he continues to fight. The red-haired knight boulder broke his leg, and white has lost his faithful horse, he lay wounded on the grass, bleeding. And the red knight, barely raised, again attacked the dragon, and white threw in that short dart. Daughters in horror were watching the battle, not knowing how to help them and how to heal their wounds.
    The dragon continued to make giant circles above them, dousing the knights of the fiery waves. Gathering all his strength, the father sharply throws his spear into flying dragon, barely cowered away from the flame. The spear hit the dragon and the father had raised his sword to finish him off. And the red and the white knights pierced the feet of the dragon with their swords, so that he was unable to rip his father.
    Mia noticed tears in the eyes of the dragon. His head was lying on the grass, crushed by the boots of the father, and the tears running down them. The grass beneath him was being slowly painted by the dragon blood. Mia rushed to her father, begging him not to kill the dragon. Excited by bout the father and the knights didn’t want to listen to Mia, driving away, but the younger continues to ask them to take pity on the dragon. Seeing this elder sisters too rushed in front of them on their knees, begging to rescue the dragon.
    Father wearily leaned on his long two-handed sword and, sadly looking at the daughters, sighed and smiled. Tears generosity filled his eyes.
    “I see that the elders became the same as Mia. Well, all you are as your Mama, there is nothing to do about it.”
    Fierce dragon suddenly curled up and strange purred. Red knight skidded over his head the sword, thinking that the dragon had invented some kind of trick. But then thunder boomed, lightning flashed directly over the tower of the castle and the dragon turned into a beautiful blond haired Prince. Seeing this, the knights recognized their king and bowed down to him. The Prince in turn kissed the hand of Mia.
    “You saved my life and now will be the lady of my heart forever”.
    Then he got down on his knee before the father and asked for the hand of his younger daughter. Father happily agreed, but where is our mother, he asked?
    The Prince respectfully took them in his former castle, into the highest tower, where she lived. Her little room was in the tower, called the Ivory Tower and battlements surrounded it. The wicked witch commanded the dragon, in which she has bewitched the Prince so he ate her. But he refused, and since then hid in the tower. With mom in the room lived an old and wise rat, Krippa, who knew how to play chess. Antique chess was a long time ago brought by the dragon from India (gift from the great Maharaja) and were made of ivory, as well as many other boxes and furniture, located in the tower. Therefore it is called the Ivory tower.
    The Prince rose up on one knee, asked about the hand of Mia also the mother, and she gladly agreed. Then the knights did the same, and the mother blessed them too. At this moment, the ocean opened up and there was huge muzzle of the Sea Dragon. All froze from his terrible roar and shiver ran through the bodies, from head to toe, girls clung to the knights, and the mother to the father. But the Dragon only, sharply leaping out of the water, grabbed the large pangolin flying over the tower and with the wild noise dived back into the water. A huge wave rose over the ocean and flew into the Blue rock coming down upon them and then the castle. And the terrible cries of the pangolin has long echoed in the ears. After that the castle did not remain and started to plunge into the bottomless abyss, and the waves with noise closed over it.
    The good witch said, “Do not be afraid, my dears, they were not pangolin, but Mirella and her servants”. The Sea Dragon finally catched her. A long time ago, she came to visit him, she stole his magic shell and began to use it for the evil, and he couldn’t find it. Now, thanks to you, she will no longer do her evil deeds. Yes, Mirella was a very powerful and evil witch, but the only thing she could not cope with was a good heart. So she decided to kill the mother and daughters, but fortunately the younger was saved and then saved you all.
    After that, all gathered and sat in 4 magic coaches, which were in the castle: platinum, gold, silver and a carriage covered with precious stones. In the first carriage sat a young king with the junior, and Pegasus carried them, in the second Elisa with a red knight, in the third Romula and the white, and in the fourth went father, mother and a good witch. It was drawn by a horse, in which the Dadona converted the wise old rat. Jewelry, which covered that carriage were her and she collected and hoarded them for hundred years. They sprang into the air and rushed home.
    In a few days they were in the Palace, and began to live together, but before that, the father arranged the wedding. At the wedding, as the story is told, there danced 50 thousands smart ladies and knights from the next 50 kingdoms. Ladies dresses glittered with diamonds and pearls, and the armor of the knights were so carefully polished that sunbeams frolicked around the Palace. After the wedding they extended the existing garden and planted there wonderful overseas statues depicting dragons, wizards and fairies. If you water them every day, they will become live and can even escape. And with them you can feel the presence of all already dead Kings and Queens, to communicate with them and even play in this world, which was created during the time of their lives.
    And since then, every morning and evening they strolled through the garden, played and had fun together with their ancestors. And the good witch made this garden magic – who goes out every day at least 3 hours, became immortal and does not have an age.
    THE END

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