It had been three years since the King's giant tamer disappeared. Giants had free reign over the kingdom. The poor boy was only sixteen when he had vanished. He had gotten word one day that a nearby village was being attacked by a giant and went on his way to help. Eyewitnesses in the village say that the offending giant, when he saw the tamer coming, ran and the tamer chased him but, never returned.
Now, with the current situation each village had giant drills once every day and seminars on what to do when you are being attacked by a giant, which was held once a week. The record for drills operated the fastest was held by the village Thistledown.
Eighteen-year-old Isabel lived in Thistledown and was sick of the giant business.
"Drills and seminars . . that's all this village knows!" She commented to herself one day. She had been walking from the market and heard from a distance the town hall bells tolling. The drill signal. In the event of a real attack one would hear the giant's footsteps and that's enough of a signal on it's own.
Three days later when she was at the market she heard the distant boom of a giant's footsteps.
"Oh-no!" She cried.
Isabel raced home. She got there and was relieved to find that her village was unharmed, but she became frightfully upset when she found out that the neighboring village lost all their livestock to the giant, who had scooped the cows and chickens and sheep all up into a bag and declared that they were for his stew that night.
Isabel was sitting at the dinner table, thinking about all this. The only person who could help the kingdom was the giant tamer, but where was he? She slammed down her goblet in frustration.
"Enough is enough!" She cried. "Mother, I am going on a quest!"
"Nonsense," was her mother's reply.
"Women do not go on quests."
"No more talk of such drivel!" Her father put in.
"The dishes need washing Isabel, I suggest that you do something about it," her mother, more so, commanded then suggested.
That night Isabel snuck down from her loft where her bed lay and stealing into the kitchen she grabbed a loaf of bread, a jug of wine, a flask of water, and a block of cheese. She wrapped up the bread and cheese in some spare linen cloths. Then put it in a burlap bag on top of the wine and water.
Hastily, Isabel grabbed a piece of parchment and scribbled with a quill pen of why she wasn't going to be there the next morning. When she finished, she silently crept out the door and into the night.
Now the giants had a way of getting up and down from their castles in the clouds. Some genius had bought some beans from the village behind the mountains and a beanstalk grew. The stalk was so thick that no man could chop it down. By daybreak Isabel had reached this beanstalk.
"I have a hunch that the giants kidnapped the tamer, though it may seem unlikely." Isabel took a deep breath and began to climb. It was so tall that she had to rest on one of the immense limbs halfway up the stalk.
It was mid-morning when Isabel reached the top. Her eyes beheld the sight of a huge castle not too far away, surrounded by vast flower beds and huge trees. Instead of the ground being made of cloud, it was made of regular soil and grass which, seemed to be supported by the clouds beneath it.
Isabel snuck up to the castle. As she did she had to quickly duck into one of the flower beds as the castle doors opened. The giant came tromping out. Isabel gulped nervously. The giant slid down the beanstalk as if it were a fireman's pole and was gone. Isabel waited a few seconds then stepped up to the gigantic doors. All was quiet. He was probably the only resident of the castle.
Suddenly she came across a note that appeared to have drifted to the floor from a nearby table. She read it.
9:00 am- Breakfast
10:00 am- Feed Will
11:00 am- Go and terrorize village
Isabel glanced at a nearby clock. It was eleven O' clock now.
"So that's where he went," she thought to herself
As Isabel searched around the castle she pondered over the "Feed Will"
that she had seen on the paper. She hoped this Will was not some giant pet.
Suddenly she heard music coming from a nearby door that was left ajar.
Isabel carefully climbed down the big stairs until the music grew louder. She crawled under another door and found herself in what appeared to be the cellar.
Isabel then spotted a cage, in comparison to the other things in the giant's castle, it was small. In the cage was a young man who looked about eighteen or nineteen years old. He was playing a minstrel's guitar.
The man jumped, startled.
"Who are you?" He cried.
"Isabel Macintyre. Who are you?"
"Are you Will?"
"The giant's pet?"
"I guess you can put it that way. I- I . . used to defeat giants until now."
"Are you the giant tamer?"
"Was the giant tamer."
"You mean is! The kingdom needs you!"
"Forget it, sister! Didn't you hear me when I said 'was?' My giant taming days are over."
"No they're not! I'm here to rescue you."
"You don't understand. It's been so long since used my gift that I probably can't do it anymore, and besides" he scoffed, looking up and down at her, "you're just a girl."
Isabel's cheeks burned.
"Well this 'girl' is your ticket out of here, whether you like it or not."
Will rolled blue his eyes and ran his fingers through his dark brown hair. "Where are the keys?" Isabel asked.
"The giant has them."
Isabel immediately pulled a hairpin out of her blond hair that she had braided and wound up into a bun. She jammed the hairpin into the lock and began to wiggle it around. As she did, she asked questions.
"You're picking the lock?" Will asked, with a raised eyebrow.
"No, I'm planting petunias . . Of course I'm picking the lock!"
"How did you get here exactly?"
"Well," Will began as he anxiously watched her pick the lock. "I was chasing a giant into a forest then, another giant, who had been hiding grabbed me and took me to his castle.
"They had set up a trap for me thinking that I had been getting rid of too many of them in the area. But, instead of destroying me the giant who captured me thought it would be amusing to use me as a servant.
"Now, I'm the giant's minstrel, poker night referee, and jester . . . . Do you think you could hurry it up a bit?"
Isabel chose to ignore him, and instead said:
"But, you're the great giant tamer! You know about the habits of giants! You could've used that to your advantage!"
"Don't you think I've tried that already! They know me too well. They put rosemary leaves around all possible exits."
Will looked at that ground and rubbed the floor with his boots, then mumbled, " . . I'm allergic to them . . . So when I try to get past them I go into a fit of sneezing and alert the giant."
Suddenly from upstairs they heard:
"FI, FIE, FO, FUM, I SMELL THE BLOOD OF AN ENGLISH . . .woman?"