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The Princess and the Pea (1) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (1)

Once upon a time, there was a young Prince who decided to get married.

" You must marry a real, genuine Princess, " insisted his mother the Queen.
" She must be beautiful,  clever,  charming and kind.  Nothing less will do ! "

And with that, she ordered the Prince's horse to be saddled and told him to ride off and start looking at once.

As there were no Princess in his own kingdom, the Prince had to travel to every country in the world to look for one.

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The Princess and the Pea (2) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (2)

He met lots of Princesses on his journey, but not one was perfect.

Some were too tall and some were much too small, others too fat and some too thin.
Some were very old and some were just babies.

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The poor Prince was really disappointed.
" I Just can't seem to find a real, genuine Princess anywhere, " he sighed.

So he climbed on his horse and began the long ride back to his kingdom.

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When at last, he returned home, he decided to give up the idea all together.

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The Princess and the Pea (3) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (3)

One dark night there was the terrible storm.

The wind howled and the rain fell by the bucketful.

Great flashes of lightning lit up the sky, and thunder shook the palace walls.

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In spite of all this noise, the king heard the tiniest knock on the palace door.

" Now, who can be calling on a night like this ? " snorted the Queen, for she was warm and comfortable and did not want to be disturbed.

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However, the kindly old king got up from his chair and went to open the door himself.

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The Princess and the Pea (4) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (4)

There standing in the doorway, was a young girl.

Her clothes were soaking and her shoes were spattered with mud.

Rainwater ran down her face and her long golden hair was all wet and bedragged.

What a sight she looked.

" I am a Princess. Please may I come in ? " she whispered.

" Princess or not, " said the King.
"  Come in by the fire and get warm, " and he led her by the hand into the great hall of his palace.

When the Prince saw her standing in the firelight, he fell in love with her and wanted to marry her at once.

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The Queen took one look at the girl dripping water on her best carpet and frowned.

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" She can't be a real, genuine Princess and look such a mess, " she muttered to herself.
" I've never heard such a tale in all my life. "

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The Princess and the Pea (5) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (5)

With that, she marched off towards the palace kitchens.

And there, from the store cupboard, she took one tiny dried pea.

Then she crept quietly up the back stairs into the very best guest room.

" We'll soon see if she's a real, genuine Princess, " and she placed the pea right in the centre of the Princess's bed.


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Next, the Queen sent for all the maids in the palace, " Bring me twenty mattresses from your linen cupboard at once. "

The maids looked surprised, but were soon scurrying and down the corriders puffing and panting under the weight of all those mattresses.

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The Princess and the Pea (6) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (6)

 " Pile them up high on the bed ! " yelled the Queen.

" Now fetch me twenty of your softest feather quilt, " the Queen ordered in her sternest voice.

So the maids brought the feather quilts.

By now everyone was quite out of breath.

" Now place the twenty feather quilts on top of the twenty mattresses, " the Queen went on.

The pile of mattresses was so high that the maids could no longer reach them.

So the Queen ordered her pageboys to bring long ladders.

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They pulled the twenty quilts up the ladders until, at last, the job was done and the Queen was satisfied.

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The Princess and the Pea (7) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (7)

While all this was going on the Princess had dried out from her soaking and was ready for bed.

She climbed up the ladder right to the top of the twenty mattresses and twenty feather quilts.


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" Now we shall see if she is a real, genuine Princess, " smiled the Queen.

Next morning, the storm had passed.
The wind had died down and the storm clouds had gone from the sky.

Bright sunshine streamed in through the palace windows, and it was a beautiful day.

The Princess, however, came in to breakfast looking very pale and tired.

" Did you sleep well ? " the Queen asked her.

" No, indeed I did not, " she replied with a yawn.
" In fact, I couldn't sleep a wink."

And the poor Princess rubbed her back.

" I think I must have been lying on a rock, the bed felt so hard and uncomfortable. "


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The Princess and the Pea (8) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (8)

The Prince looked at the King in dimayーbut the Queen told them not to worry.

How she laughed as she led the Princess back to her bedroom.

One by one the pageboys took away the feather quilts.

Then  one by one the maids took away the mattresses.

And there, lying right in the middle of the bed, was one tiny dried PEA !

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" Only a real, genuine Princess could feel a tiny dried pea through all those quilts and mattresses, " laughed the Queen with delight.

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The Princess and the Pea (9 完) [The Princess and the Pea]

The Princess and the Pea (9)

When the Prince heard the story he asked the Princess to marry him.

Not because she had proved she was a real, genuine Princessーbut because he had fallen in love with her when he first saw her.

So, the Prince married the Princess and they were very very happy together.

They kept the tiny dried pea on a velvet cushion inside a special glass case.

This would keep it quite safe.

In the years to come their children could take a look at itーand in many years, perhaps their grandchildren too !

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