The First Story

The Princess


Long ago, in the far-off land of Vāldovar, there lived a wise King, whose name was Ferdinand the Thirteenth. King Ferdinand was a kind and gentle man. His favourite pastime was to walk out amongst his subjects and to spend the day talking to them; then he would stroll through the meadows, smelling the perfume of the small, blue Sky-petals that grew in rich profusion. He would next go to the leafy woods and watch the birds and the badgers and all the other small creatures that lived there. For King Ferdinand, that was the perfect day!
      Queen Berenice, who was very beautiful, spent most of her mornings in the royal castle, where she made sure that the Servants and the Pageboys, the Ladies-in-waiting, the Guards and the Courtiers, all knew what their duties were and carried them out correctly.
      When she was satisfied that everything was in order, Queen Berenice would call for her carriage, and she would go out of the castle and amongst the folk of Vāldovar. She would call upon the old and the sick, and anyone who needed help.