Once upon a time in a land far, far away, a young princess was born. The king and queen were thrilled finally to have gotten a child, and their little daughter was the most precious thing they had ever had. One day, when the princess were only a few months old, the king held a Christening ceremony for her. He had invited the whole kingdom and most importantly, he had invited seven fairies to come as godmothers. Each of them gave the princess a gift – they gave her beauty, cleverness, gracefulness, thoughtfulness, a beautiful voice and the gift of music. Nevertheless, when the turn came to the seventh and last fairy, everyone was amazed.
“I shall give you the greatest gift of all!” the fairy said, looking down at the princess in her crib. “In your twenty seventh year, you will stop aging, and you shall become immortal! You will stay young and beautiful, and you will forever be the queen of this land! You shall live until this world ends!” she cried out. Everyone was clapping and smiling at this point. Blessed and cheerful were the king and the queen. Their daughter would live forever! Never would they be childless again.
However, the fairy was not finished speaking.
“But I must warn you”, the fairy said in a serious tone. “Should your precious daughter ever step on a needle or simply touch one before the day she turns twenty-seven, she will die immediately. After this day, she will become immortal, but the needles will still have the power to kill her – if she pricks herself with it on purpose. Every needle must be kept far away from her if you want her to live!”
The queen started crying. The king, looking terrified, cried out: “I declare all sewing forbidden in this castle! Every needle shall stay far away from my daughter for all eternity! From now on, everyone who brings a needle into this castle will be punished by death!”
Therefore, it happened that the princess spent all of her childhood inside the castle. When she wanted to go outside, the king strictly told her no. She led a miserable life, and she was never allowed to be alone. Several people always had to watch out for her. She had no freedom, and she could not remember a time where she had not been depressed. She wanted to see the world. Only when she turned seventeen she got to know the truth. The princess was horrified. What future did she have? To be kept safe in the castle for another ten years was no worthy life, she thought. To never be trusted with a needle for the rest of her life. She did not want the immortal life she had been given. She did not want to turn twenty-seven and stay that age forever. If she could not have a normal life, she did not want her life at all.
One day, when the princess was standing in her room, looking out her window, she saw someone in the distance. She stepped closer to the window, and the princess could now see that it was a brave-looking girl, riding a white cow. The girl had short dark brown hair, and she was smiling.
The princess fell in love with her instantly.
“Someone, invite that girl into the castle!” she bellowed. “I want to see her!”, she cried out.
As soon as she had said it, a servant was already on her way down the stairs to get hold of the girl. That was the only benefit of being a princess; she always got what she wanted – as long as she did not ask for something that might be dangerous, that is.
When the girl came into her room a moment later, and the princess had convinced her servants to leave the room to give her three minutes alone with the girl, the princess did not hesitate. “Free me, my dear woman! Free me from the miserable life of mine! I shall always live in a fear of needles. No one in this castle trusts that I can take care of myself. I do not want to live this way. Please, my friend, bring me a needle so I can escape. You look so brave and strong, you must be able to help me!”
“My dear princess. You shall not end your life in this castle”, was all the girl said at first.
Then she took her hand, and the princess started crying. She had the most beautiful eyes she had ever seen. They were as blue as the ocean, and as bright as a shooting star.
“You must help me, my dear. I cannot stay locked up in this room for another ten years. I do not wish to become immortal, only my parents and servants wants this for me!”
“Come with me!” the girl said. “Come with me and I shall show you the world you have wished to see for so long”.
The girl took a pair of gloves out of her backpack and a wand from her pocket. She pointed at the gloves and said a spell.
“You will wear these protective gloves that will prevent any needle from ever coming close to you. I shall also give you magic boots”, the girl told the princess. “You shall never worry about needles anymore. You can take care of yourself from now on. However, this is your life, and you can take off the gloves and the shoes if you want. I trust you”, the girl continued, while she said a spell that bewitched the whole castle and made it fall asleep for a hundred years. “Now, come with me, my beautiful princess. You are free”, she said.
The princess nodded, and they took off. The princess felt melancholic when she realized that she would never return to the castle or see her parents again. However, when she looked up and saw the beautiful, blue sky she knew that she was doing the right thing. They were outside in the fresh air, and she leaned forward and kissed the girl on her cheek. They were both smiling. Her life began at this moment. She felt alive for the first time in seventeen years.
They traveled the world and lived happily together until the very day when the girl’s old heart could not keep up with life any longer. The princess took of her magic gloves, and she took out a needle she had found many years before and had kept safe in a small box. She stuck herself with it, and felt her life end. Finally, she was free. She had lived.