(Daily Prompt: living happily forever.)
When the beautiful Princess meets the handsome (and rich) Prince at the end of the fairy tale, and the author tells us that “they lived happily forever after,” the notion is at least implied that the author has taken us along the barbed and beautiful path winding through the story until… The End.
That’s it…the end of the story. Anyone who is interested in hearing about what happens after the presumeably happy couple skips along on their merry way into the sunset. (Remember those grade school book reports at school where we would smugly say to the class : “to find out wat happens next, you will have to read the book….” ? Well, admittedly that was a cop out, but the teacher was well aware of that fact and had a list of embarrassing questions to ask. (It was not easy to fool Miss Cruelhart.)
Oh sure, it’s easy to extrapolate! If one really wants to, we can speculate about the countless ways that the story could develop, or even drag on endlessly as the Princess and the Prince went about their lives in the Ever-after.
Is it even possible to live happily forever after? After what? After the happy ending in the Fairy Tale story as written? How long IS “forever after” anyway? One human life span? What does “happy” require–would it be possible for BOTH the Priness and the Prince to achieve perfect harmony and compatibility indefinitely, until the end of Forever?
What if the Princess REALLY was awakened from her deep and endless sleep, and was socked with the Prince’s infamous bad breath when he kissed her. . (There had to be some reason a handsome and rich Prince would have remained eligible to encounter beautiful Princesses that were just waiting for him to come along and discover her waiting for his attentions.)
Happily “ever-after” might be able to recover from halitosis (if the Prince was rich enough, and someone recommended some good toothpaste,) But how could they get over the negative issues raised when the Princess had the gall to wrinkle her delicate nose in distaste? Talk about hurt feelings…here the guy shows up out of nowhere and uses his magic powers to awaken the Maiden from her sleep, and she rebuffs him?
What if the girl simply does not LIKE the Prince? What if HE doesn’t like her?
No wonder the Fairy Tales end with the “happily ever-after” thing. They would not be as charming if the last sentence in the story was something like: “…the Prince immediately realized his mistake, when the Princess’ first waking word was “EW…” How rude! And actually, chances are that the Prince found her less than attractive up close.–who knew how long she had been lying there in her coma?