The Beauty And The Beast

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Once upon a time, in a far-off country, there lived a rich merchant. He had six sons and six daughters. Suddenly misfortune befell upon them. Their house caught fire and all their assets were burnet to ashes and father’s merchant ships were robbed by the pirates and sunk in the ocean. They had to move into a small cottage away from the town and have to start doing hard labor to earn their living. After losing everything children regretted and missed their luxurious lives. 

Only the youngest daughter, whose name was Beauty, tried to be brave and cheerful and tried her best to lighten the environment. She involved her siblings to join her in singing and dancing but they would do nothing and said back “you are fit to live this miserable life but not we”.

Nearly two years passed and everyone has adjusted themselves into the new lifestyle. Suddenly, the father received news that one of his ships, which was lost, had come safely into the port. Everyone got excited and thought that their days of struggle are now over. Father asked everyone to wait for few days until he returns from the port after checking the status of the ship. 

While he was all set to leave for port, everyone asked him to bring expensive jewels and dresses but Beauty didn’t want anything and just want her father to return back safely. When her father insisted, she said “Well, dear father, if you insist, i want a red rose. I have not seen one since we shifted here.”

After a long journey Merchant finally found his ship but it was in a bad state and was seized by the authorities. With nothing to salvage, he decided to return back home thinking “I should reach home before the weather gets worse. It will just take me few hours to get through this forest.”

But that night the snow covered the land and bitter frost made it impossible for the horse to move further. He took shelter in the hollow trunk of a great tree. The howling of the wolves kept him awake all night. By next morning, snow had covered up every path and he did not know which way to go.

He kept moving forward thinking that he’ll find some shelter. On his way he came across a beautiful palace which was full of green trees and bushes. Merchant got off his horse and went inside. As he opened the door he was surprised, there were beautiful picture and statues inside but no human being to be seen. Everything in that place was beautifully presented.

As he was hungry, he decided to go inside to look for food. He reached a hall where he saw a fire burning and a couch in the corner. He sat on the couch and waited for the owner to come but soon he fell asleep. 

After several hours had passed, he woke up and found that he was still alone in the palace. He saw a table on which delicious food was laid out so he couldn’t control himself. He started to enjoy the meal while waiting for the host to arrive, but no one came. Then he went down into the garden and said “It’s snowing everywhere but the birds are singing and flowers are blooming in the palace. It seems that everything was prepared for me, I’m so lucky. I will come back here with my children so that they can also explore this beautiful palace.”

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As he was untying his horse, he saw a garden full of red roses. It reminded him of his youngest daughter Beauty, who had asked him to bring a red rose for her. He stopped and picked one rose from the garden. But as soon as he had done so, he was startled by a strange noise behind him.  He turned around and saw a frightful Beast, “Who dare you steal my rose? I was being so kind to you and gave you shelter and food. Is this the way to thank anyone? Now I will not forgive you.”

The merchant got scared and dropped the rose on the ground, went on his knees and cried. He told the beast about the reason of his journey and the promise he has made to his daughter Beauty. 

Beast said, “I will let you go on one condition that you will give me one of your daughters.” 

Merchant cried, “It was my fault. Please don’t ask for my daughter, punish me instead.”

Beast ignored his request and said “Horse is ready in the courtyard to take you home and it will also bring you back here after a month along with one of your daughters. Take a rose to Beauty and remember your promise!”

Merchant left from there after acknowledging beast’s promise. When he reached his cottage, he narrated the whole story to his sons and daughters. Sons started making plans to kill the beast but father reminded them that he had promised Beast to come back with one of the daughters.  Listening to this Beauty said, “It’s all because of me, I didn’t knew that I’ve to pay such a heavy price for a rose. I will go with you”

When she started the journey with her father, Beauty was not afraid at all. While they were travelling towards the palace, wonderful fireworks started to go off in all directions. Merchant and Beauty reached the palace of orange trees and saw that the palace was brilliantly lit from roof to the ground, and music sounded softly from the courtyard.

They went inside and saw everything was prepared for them. Soon they heard the loud footsteps of the beast. As he was coming from the stairs, Beauty saw him and was terrified. She gathered courage and greeted him. After looking at her the Beast said,“Good evening, have you come here by your own choice? And will you be happy to stay here after your father leaves?”  Beauty nodded her head in approval.  

Looking at the Merchant Beast said “You should leave the palace tomorrow and must never expect to see my palace again.” Merchant rested there for the night and the next day he left the palace after saying his goodbye to Beauty.

Beauty started to live in the palace. One day while wandering around, she came across some rooms which were filled with books, statues, pictures and paintings. As she was observing the paintings, she saw a handsome prince and thought to himself “Who is he? I think this palace belongs to this prince but beast must have locked him up somewhere”

After nearly a month has passed living in the palace where her everywish was catered to, Beauty started to feel homesick. She asked Beast if she could go and see her family once.

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Beast agrees to her demand only on one condition that she must be back in exactly one week’s time. Beast gave her an enchanted ring which when turned thrice will take her to her family home and back and also said “You only have one week. If you don’t return as you’ve promised, you’ll never find me.”

Her family was very happy to see her and all the riches and grand clothes she got to posses in the beast’s palace. They tried to persuade her to stay with them and also to marry another handsome man but Beauty didn’t budge from her promise to the Beast.  

One night she dreamt of beast lying on the ground. She ran to him, “If you had delayed one day more, you would have found me dead.”  Beauty was terrified by this dream and the next morning she said goodbye to her father and her siblings. She turned her enchanted ring and said firmly “I wish to go back to my palace and see my Beast again.”

As soon as she returned back to the palace, she started looking for the Beast. When she couldn’t find her, she went in the garden and saw the Beast lying there motionless. She was terrified and said “Oh, Is he dead? it is all my fault as I got late in coming back”. But then she saw him breathing and he said softly “You came on time. I thought i would never see you again”

Then Beauty expressed her love for the Beast. Beast asked her if she will marry him and Beauty nodded sheepishly. Suddenly the palace was lighted up with fireworks.
Beast suddenly transformed into the handsome prince who photos Beauty has seen in the palace all over. The curse on the prince was finally broken as he has now found true love. 

The charming prince and Beauty got married in a pompous ceremony where her entire family was also invited and they lived happily ever after.

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