This was written for the Tales of Beedle the Bard Challenge, which says to write a story that could have been in that book.
Now I'm not Joanne K. Rowling but I hope I did alright. Let me know what you think please!
In times past, Cornish pixies were fabled for their beauty. The younglings were a feast for the eyes, slim, lithe yet sinewy, and handsome. The young maidens held an unearthly beauty and grace, drawing the desire of many a man. Yet, they preferred to stay among their kind, not deeming mere humans worthy of their affection. Even the older folks stayed beautiful and flawless until the day they felt their end draw near.
The fairest of them all was Morwena, the only daughter of the village elder; born on a fair spring day, and the sun had risen the moment she took her first breath. She had eyes as blue as the sea, and hair as shining as the sun.
Morwena grew up knowing nothing but friendliness, sheltered in the community of the pixies, and dotted on by the villagers.
Morwena was always surrounded by her peers, but one in particular was devoted to her. The young Jowan was always happiest in her company, and would lay down his life for her.
As the years passed, Morwena’s beauty only grew, and so did her self-esteem. Suitors would beat a path to their door, but the girl would have none of it.
One day found her sitting on a bench on the village square, surrounded by young and old. Jowan thought that she was out-doing the sun with her smile, but it wasn’t her usual smile. As her gaze strayed over the group at her feet again, he caught her eye and winked at her.
“Erised the Dragon,” he called loudly, and when everyone started looking around in panic, Jowan took off lightly, holding out his hand for Morwena. She seized it nimbly, both soaring up into the sky. They soon had left the village far below themselves. Jowan twirled and twisted himself into the air, dipping in and out of clouds. His greatest pleasure was as he turned his head back to see Morwena only inches behind him, spinning herself around in flight to the sound of her lilting laughter.
When she noticed him looking at her, she indicated a forest below, and dived down towards it.
They raced each other, the wind playing with their hair and clothes, and Jowan couldn’t have described the elation he felt even if he wanted.
They set down between the trees, tiny against the giant tree trunks. Morwena settled down in the grass, spreading her skirts around her.
As Jowan watched her, he could see that she looked dreamy, not sorrowful, as he had thought before.
“Oh Jowan, I have to tell someone, lest I’ll explode! Father has accepted a suitor, and it – oh, guess who it is!” She clapped her hands excitedly.
Jowan felt as if his whole world had stopped spinning. He had silently rejoiced every time one of Morwena’s suitors had been turned away.
Morwena took his silence for excitement, and answered, “I should really not tell anyone, but you are my best friend, Jowan! It’s Conan, Prince of the Pixie Folks! Can you imagine, I’ll be a princess!”
In her excitement, she couldn’t remain sitting; Morwena jumped up and twirled through the clearing, her knee-length skirt rising with every pirouette.
As Jowan watched her, his heart ached. She was a princess to him already, and he it was only just that he refrained from blurting that out loud. He could never give her what their prince could, and she just confirmed she would never see anything but a friend in him.
Morwena chatted happily to him, regaling him with everything she had not been allowed to tell the villagers, and taking no notice of Jowan’s continued silence.
Eventually, the engagement was announced, a festive occasion for the whole of Cornwall. Prince Conan was due to come to the village and retrieve his bride on July 5th.
He was captivated by Morwena’s beauty from the moment he laid eyes on her. The two young pixies had only eyes for each other, and the King was quite pleased with his choice for a daughter-in-law.
Not so his wife. The Queen feared for her own status, and how that young thing would take away her attention. She also did not like it that her favourite son would marry that naive, low-born girl.
So she concocted a plan to foil the alliance. On the morrow of the wedding day, she disguised herself as a wise woman, and sought out the bride. The Queen offered her eternal life and wealth beyond her imagination if she decided not to wed the prince.
Morwena, joyously, and in the belief that she deserved anything the world had to offer, and somehow convinced she would get her prince anyway with her beauty, agreed.
The Queen then showed her true face, saying that Morwena had failed the test, and summoned the Dragon Erised to kill the greedy girl.
Morwena cried out; Erised was the scourge of the little village and everyone lived in fear of him. The Queen only laughed and left the girl at the dragon’s mercy.
But two others had heard her cries. Prince Conan and Jowan rushed to her aid. They skirted around the dragon, seizing the beast up; and also each as they realised who the other was and that they were rivals. As the dragon reared and released a bout of flames at the two pixie men, Morwena cried out and fell to the floor in a dead faint.
Jowan immediately was at her side. Prince Conan seized his sword and charged the much bigger dragon. Without much ado, Erised brought one of his claws down and the prince stirred no more.
Jowan only noticed this on the side. He had felt for Morwena’s pulse, and sighed in relief when he found it. He looked up as the dragon drew himself up in front of them, and a determined glint appeared in Jowan’s eyes.
He kicked himself up from the ground, flew circles around the dragon’s head, which resulted in a few very near misses, before he made a beeline the forest edge. The undergrowth swallowed him whole; Erised the dragon, enraged at the pixie’s cheek, followed blindly and left a path of burned trees in his wake as he broke through the forest.
Jowan’s head popped up just inches from where he had broken through the undergrowth, and seeing the air was clear, he swiftly came back and slowly set down next to Morwena.
As Jowan tended to her, the Queen came back, and saw her son, lying on the ground with broken limbs and neck.
In her fury, she cursed the whole race of the Cornish Pixies, taking away their beauty.
When Morwena awoke, she let out a horrified scream. The water of the lake showed her a blue, ugly face with a big mouth and protruding eyes. Long, pointy ears peeked through her hair, which no longer shone like woven rays of sunshine. Her body seemed misshapen.
She sunk down on her knees, weeping bitter tears.
Jowan could not bear to see it. He sank to the ground beside her, and took her hands away from her face.
“Morwena, I’ll love you forever and ever. You are just as beautiful to me as before.”
“How could you? See what I did, I cursed my whole folk, I angered the Queen and caused Prince Conan’s death. Who would want me?”
“Me. I’d take you, always.”
Morwena took his offered hand, feeling a warm feeling rise within her for her friend. Just for him, she would learn to accept her new appearance, swearing to herself that she would never again be vain or arrogant or greedy.