Forgive my silence on the life of our intrepid Frog Princess (Last post here). But you see, the truth is that there hasn’t been much to tell. For in the Wintertime, Frogs are not famous for being particularly outgoing, and so her usual recklessness was… Tamed. Indeed, during this Wintertime not a thing happened for the Frog Princess, except, maybe in her dreams. But the long awaited Spring had finally sprung, the Sun rekindling the heat and every living thing blooming announced that the calm was now over. The Princess knew this, she had been looking out for the storm about to hit her. What she didn’t know was that she was about to hit it. Quite literally. One day that she was innocently playing about, she actually and physically ran into a wall, quite nearly breaking her nose, and the prophecy she had once told her Fairy-Stepmother on the subject of life when she was seventeen was fulfilled: “I think one day I’m going to hit a wall, really hard.” While her head was still spinning and before she realized blood was gushing, she remembered those words and waited for the rest to unfold. The first wave to hit her was when she concluded that all this outer-inactivity might be a threat to her health. All those months of keeping things inside had created chaos in there and the doctors had found… Complications. The second wave hit right after, when she saw that the place she believed was a safe haven during Wintertime was actually a castle made of clouds and the soldiers inhabiting the castle had noses as long as Pinocchio did on a bad day. The third wave, well the third wave came in the form of a Charming Prince. A new teacher for our Frog Princess, to his detriment the poor thing. Everything had been perfect. Quite perfect really. She met him at a ball. He liked her smile. She liked his style. He made her dance half the night. His dancing skills could not be ignored, nor were they, and when they had enough of dancing, he took her hand and led her outside. While on that moonlit stroll she asked questions she forgot the answers to and he asked questions he did not want the answers to. When he kissed her good morning he told her he would call on her very soon. She knew he was going to keep that promise. Because, well, she hadn’t turned into a Frog this time. And so when he called on her the first time it was that hard for the, not so slimy, Princess to avoid him. After another message and a second request she resolved into being honest with him. Or at least as honest as propriety allowed her to be. She did not, in fact, want to see him again. It didn’t work, and he tried persuading her yet again into another meeting in an enchanting place he knew she’d never seen before. Why was he making things so difficult for her? Why couldn’t he just take no for an answer? But maybe more importantly, why didn’t she want to say yes? Truly, that Prince was everything a young man ought to be. He had an important station, he had a lovely castle surrounded by the most romantic garden she’d ever seen. He delighted in playing her the piano. Maybe that was the most important thing: He seemed ready to go to great length to please her. And whatever his reasons were, he even stopped smoking the day after they met. All she had to do was say yes and she would be treated like the Princess she is. Alas. She knew there would be no happily ever after for her in this story. She knew this because when he laughed, she did not smile uncontrollably. When he looked at her, she did not see a lightning bolt. Only his determination in loving her. And if he coughed, she did not care to ask if he was ok. And so again, she pondered, like a pondering thing in a pond. She began to consider her health and all related matters. She blew away the cloud castle and the puppet Pinocchios and looked for a new sanctuary. And, finally, she began to grasp what Unconditional meant. Finding a Prince that fulfils a list of glamorous things written on a piece of paper is very swell indeed. But maybe finding one whose only clear achievement is that he makes her heartbeat quite impossible to stabilise might just be all that she requires. Because what is the point of anything if there are no uncontrollable smiles, lightning bolts and care involved? Even if, maybe, sometimes, the price to pay is turning into a Frog. Again. XoXo – With Uncontrollable Smiles, Lightning bolts and Hope.