The Tragedy of the White Queen

In a Kingdom long ago, there lived the most spoilt and obnoxious Princess the land had ever seen. Her name was Snow White and she was doted on by her affectionate but blind father, the King. The Princess’ mother had passed away in childbirth and perhaps it was a blessing that the beautiful Queen had not lived to see the young girl her daughter had become. She was rude to the servants, unpleasant to the commoners and frequently retired to her room where she would sulk for hours at a time. Yet because she was the Princess and the King’s only daughter, Snow White was permitted to get away with whatever she desired. There was only one person who saw through the little brat.

The King had married again of course and the new Queen was just as beautiful as his first. She had none of her fire, however and she was as timid as a mouse. She saw through Snow White’s falsehoods but she dared not speak ill of her husband’s daughter. The King was a jovial man but the Queen knew she risked banishment if she ever spoke out. The years passed by and Snow White grew more obnoxious with every season.

When she had reached her thirteenth year, Snow White resolved to have her stepmother expelled from the Kingdom. Each day she would walk across the stone courtyard to her father’s study and ask him to banish the Queen. Though the King loved his daughter with all his heart, he also loved the Queen and each day he refused. This only wound up his daughter further and she decided she would have to take matters into her own hands. Snow White spent the next fortnight carefully watching the Queen and practising her handwriting until she had it perfected.

One night, as storms battered the castle, Snow White crept into the King’s chambers and planted a carefully folded note by the side of his four-poster bed. The next day, the King discovered the note and his rage was terrible to behold for it contained a plot to murder him and poison his beloved daughter. In the gallery, Snow White smirked as she watched her father berate the Queen. The Queen’s face was tearstained as she tried to make the King believe her pleas but there was nothing to be done; he would not hear a single word against Snow White.

Treason was the highest crime in the Kingdom and there was only one punishment the King could bestow. The disgraced Queen was sentenced to death by beheading and with no fight left in her soul, she dutifully laid her head on the block. Hundreds turned out to watch for there had not been an execution in almost twenty years and they were excited to see the Queen’s head roll. The King and Snow White stood hand in hand and gave the order. The last thing the Queen saw in the world was the look of smug satisfaction on Snow White’s face as the axe swung down and severed her head from her body. The commoners swarmed the corpse, pillaging it for all they could find and the bloodied head was tossed into the pigs’ trough. It was an ignoble end for the beautiful Queen.

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