Once upon a time there was a faraway land called Peaceland. It was ruled by a great king named Valois. His wife, Meriam, died giving birth and, because of this, he became bitter. The child survived and was named Drucilla. Valois blamed Drucilla for his wife's death and resented the child until the day he died. She grew up a miserable girl and when Valois died, she became queen. She changed the name of the land from Peaceland to Gailsnig, her religion's name for evil.

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"I wish we ruled this land. We would be fair queens and think of the people of this land. And Mother would no longer harm our world." Abigail said to her sister, Gwenevere as they stopped right before the manger where they would tend to the animals.
"Have patience, Abigail, for one day we will have strength over our mother and good will rule over evil." Gwenevere told her sister, although sharing the same resentment toward their mother, Drucilla. They heard the cries of Pegasus and Katran and decided to get to their task. They walked to where Pegasus and Katran lay. Pegasus was Abigail's giant winged horse. He had a shiny silver coat of fur and his wings glimmered light green in the sunlight. Katran was Gwenevere's unicorn with a beautiful white coat and deep blue eyes just like Gwenevere's. She had silver wings that, along with her horn, shone blue and green.
As the two girls groomed and fed their animals, Drucilla watched them patiently. Content that they were busy and occupied, she rushed to a great hall of guarded cells with bars across the entrance so whoever may be inside could not escape. She stopped at one where a giant beast with the head of a lion, the body of a dragon, and the wings of a vulture.
Upon arrival, he noticed her and said but this, "You are an evil witch. Set me free now."
And then she said, "Saying that will not help you. If you promise to marry me I will set you free of the curse that is upon you."
And his answer was, "No. I will never marry you as you are an ugly woman. Much more ugly than the creature you turned me into." And then she would leave and go to her chambers, planning to return there tomorrow and ask the same thing, hoping for a different answer.

Gwenevere and Abigail sat in their sleeping chambers as it was the only place other than the manger where Pegasus and Katran now slept that they weren't forbidden to be by their mother. Abigail sat brushing her long blond hair watching the deep green eyes on the pale face staring back at her in her reflection. While Gwenevere lay on her bed staring at the wall. Wondering how long it was 'til their next meal. Their meals were always brought by William, a peasant who was very much against the selfish rulings of Queen Drucilla. He always stayed a little while to tell them stories and bring them news off the streets of Gailsnig. He was their only tie to the world outside their sleeping chambers. One thing that interested Gwenevere was that he was one of the few that knew how to read. He usually pretended he couldn't because that way he could be exposed to other knowledge that the people that could read weren't usually exposed to. Gwenevere wished that she could, someday, be taught to read.
He came in with the two girls' meals accompanied by two guards who left on his command. Once they were gone, he said to them, "Gwenevere, Abigail, the word is that your mother is to be wed. I've heard she turned a young man that she wished to marry into a terrible beast and kept him captive. She swore to keep him locked up until he promised to marry her when he is set free. If your mother is wed, Gwnevere may lose her title to the throne and then evil will live on."
Gwenevere sprang from her place on the bed with her long, silky brown hair trailing behind her back, "What are we to do?" She asked, worried for the entire kingdom.
"I've heard this man she wishes to marry was forced into this and by letting the beast out of the walls of the castle, he will be free of queen Drucilla's curse and return to being a young man." William told them.
One fact disturbed Abigail, "But we have been almost nowhere outside our chambers. How will we find this beast?"
"I shall come with you. We must sneak around unnoticed to the cell where he is being kept." William answered.
"But surely there will be guards around his cell, and surely they will not allow us to see him even. How will we free this beast from the walls of the castle?" Gwenevere asked.
William smiled, "I am a respected messenger. I will tell the guards they are needed by Queen Drucilla. They will believe me and leave. Then we can unlock the cell, and I have already obtained the key." He explained.

With no other questions, they set off. The two girls dressed in rag cloaks that hid any indication of their identity. They had barely any trouble until the shadow of a humming figure was moving toward the corner where they hid. The three of them recognized the long, straggly hair and the long pointed nose of the person in the shadow to be Queen Drucilla. They sat as still as they possibly could hoping not to be caught. They heard as she passed and when they were certain she was gone, William sprang out to the hall where she just was.
As he did this, he heard her voice, "William, what are you doing there? Wait, never mind that. How are those wretched girls doing?" She asked.
"They are doing as well as they ever were, rotting away in that awful chamber." He faked an evil tone very well, but the girls, who still hadn't been seen by their mother, knew he was saying that only to please and fool the Queen. Drucilla smiled a wicked smile and walked away down another long corridor.
The three of them were very careful from them on. When they got to their destination, the girls hid from sight as William told all the guards they were needed by the queen. Once they all were gone, the girls came out from hiding and they made their way to the cell where this beast awaited.
When he noticed them he said, "Who are you?"
And William answered, "I am William, these are Abigail and Gwenevere. We are here to free you."
The beast said, "Ahh, I am Kalewin. A friend of mine told me you were coming. We didn't expect you to bring friends."
"They will help us. For now, we must set you free." Saying this, William withdrew a giant, shiny, gold key from his pocket and slipped it into the lock. With a turn of the key, the lock and key fell to the floor. In an instant, Kalewin came out of the cell and grabbed Abigail, his claws sticking through her right arm, causing her cloak to drip with blood.
Gwenevere gasped, "What are you doing?"
And Kalewin answered, "Now that I am free, I will not need you three. The information William was told had been given to him by a person I created out of the dust in my cell and given life by the fire of my breath. Before I was changed to this creature, I was an evil man. I know am an evil beast and will kill anyone who stands in my way of ruling this land." With that, he dropped Abigail. Gwenevere and William rushed to her. She was still alive, but barely.

They fled through the castle carrying Abigail with Kalewin following, leaving a path of destruction. Soon, Drucilla was there and she was very angry. With one of Kalewin's mighty fiery breath, she was but ashes. William and Gwenevere managed to escape the castle and, when they got out, Gwenevere saw the land for the very first time. It was much unlike the tales that William told her of how. long ago, it was beautifully green. Instead, it was dry, almost desolate. This angered Gwenevere. She let go of Abigail and fled faster than she had ever run before. Soon, she found a mighty sword and a massive shield. She went back to face Kalewin.
Soon, she found him. He tried to breath fire upon her, but she was protected by the shield. With one strong and fast throw, the sword left Gwenevere's hand and stabbed through Kalewin's heart. He dropped to the ground and, before he died, spoke his last words, "Rule this land with strength, but bring peace to the land." Then the great beast died.
William and Gwenevere carried Abigail and they found a place to spend the night among the destruction. The next day, Abigail died. They said farewell and set at once to rebuild the great kingdom. Soon, William and Gwenevere were married. They took Kalewin's last advice and brought peace to the land. Over time, William taught Gwenevere to read and she read some of the old books written about the old way of the kingdom, most of them dating back to when it was common to know how to read. And, when the kingdom was rebuilt, and they had a steady rule, they changed it's name back to Peaceland and lived happily ever after.

THE END