Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Frog Prince

Castansa shoved the slippery bullfrog at her maid. "You kiss it. You get the kiss, I get the prince."

"He said a princess..." Hana's fingers twitched just enough to keep hold of it.

"Then he's out of luck. Kiss it, or put the thing outside for the cat."

Hana stared down at the frog-prince. He was starting to dry out, and he looked at her out of those big eyes. She swallowed, remembering the bullfrogs her brothers had caught in the swamp behind their house.

"It has to be a princess?" she asked the frog-prince. The frog shifted his front feet and stared up at her. Hana lifted him up to her face. From the corner of her eye she saw the princess laughing.

"Kiss it!" Castansa giggled.

The maid closed her eyes. She gingerly laid her lips against his side. Soft, not slippery at all.

Arms came around her and she jolted, her eyes flying open. Her face was much too close to another pair of eyes. Male, human, smiling eyes.

A noise pulled her attention from the impossibility of it. They both stared down at a rather large frog sitting in a puddle made of Castansa's gown.

"Princess Castansa?" The frog croaked, sounding so much like the princess that Hana's eyes widened. "What will I tell the King?" she asked faintly. She bent and gathered her former mistress against her apron. The frog slapped its tongue against her wrist and she shoved it hurriedly at the prince.

"Well, Princess." The Prince said to the slippery creature in his hands. It was rather larger and uglier than he had been. He smiled at his rescuer. "You aren't a princess, so I guess the curse had to go somewhere. Should we put her out for the cat?"

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