It took Myrtle a while to gather the courage to put thought into action; meanwhile the frog waited patiently. Slowly she got out of the armchair, walked over to the frog and kneeled beside it. There was no way in hell that she was going to pick it up. She leaned closer and touched her lips to its cold skin for merely an instant. Myrtle sat back on her heels and watched the frog intently. Nothing happened for a full five minutes. She kissed it again just to make sure that she would not be missing out on the opportunity of a lifetime. The only observable changes were those taking place in Myrtle’s own body. Her skin contracted, became coarse and dimpled; her eyes grew bulbous and popped the black rimmed glasses she wore off the end of her nose; between her fingers and toes webbed skin grew at an alarming rate. Fairy tales never seemed to get the facts straight. This is what you got for believing in them so fiercely, Myrtle du Toit, she scolded herself. The only audible sound was a hesitant, female, “Ribbit” that popped out between her now fleshy lips. The Frog Prince spoke to her in soft croakings that calmed and soothed her frayed nerves. She understood Frogese perfectly. He had chosen her as his bride; had sent his best spies to watch her and had obtained a magic potion from a slant eyed witch who lived in a gingerbread house. He and the cat had an understanding. Marshmallow knew how lonely his mistress was and together they had planned the event as a romantic Valentine’s Day surprise. Myrtle shuddered in as far as her new amphibious body would allow. This was a nightmare!
Thus Myrtle and Walter, for this was the frog prince’s name, became queen and king in their own right after the passing of the Prince’s parents. They ruled less happily ever after than the fairy tales proclaim as Myrtle still hankered after her lost humanity. The slimy, dark palace depressed her endlessly and on every fourteenth of February thereafter she would take to her bed, such as it was, and weep for lost and forgotten things. Marshmallow was later changed into a tiny frog pet and became his mistress’ sole solace in times of need.
What is the moral of this convoluted tale, you ask? Be careful what you wish for on Valentine’s Day and never ever believe a single fairytale. I bid you adieu as Myrtle croaks from under the rosebush; spewing forth sage, frogly advice in my midnight writer’s world.