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© Written by Tasha Guenther and illustrated by Leanne Guenther

Cinderella fairy tale based on the original story by Charles Perrault

Once upon a time in a land much like

yours and mine lived a young girl named Ella. She was
born in a small house with her mother, Lily, and her father,
a hardworking merchant.
Her mother was kind, loving, and patient and her father
was happy. They were a gracious family, who saw
wonderful success. Such success allowed them to move
into a large, four thousand-acre estate.
Ella loved the lily gardens around the estate and spent
much of her time there. In these gardens she met an odd,
yet charming array of friends: three blind mice, an
uncountable number of birds, and a spider monkey named
Zuzu, who had escaped from her wealthy neighbor’s
Months after they arrived, however, Ella’s mother fell sick.
She died shortly after, leaving a heartbroken husband.
After her death, he left on business more regularly and left
Ella alone to grow into a woman of parallel kindness to her
During one of his travels, Ella’s father met a woman. By
the time he arrived home on the day of Ella’s 16th
birthday, he was married once more.
The woman arrived in an extravagant horse-drawn
carriage with her two daughters. The three ladies stepped
out head-to-toe in silk, lace, gems, and fur. Ella smiled and
greeted her new stepfamily but, disregarding her kindness,
they huffed and hollered at the coachman.
“Goodness me” began the stepmother, “it’s like he
purposefully drove over all those potholes.”
“And the rocks! My poor dress! Ruined at the seams!”
screeched the eldest stepsister.
“I have bruises ALL over! And my haaair” whined the
Ella watched wide-eyed as
the newcomers spent the next weeks changing everything
about the estate. Walls were painted pink, grass was
replaced with stone, and the lily gardens were removed
and changed for rose ones.
As months passed, her father’s business began to decline.
He turned solely to trade and was away for months at sea.
While travelling, Ella was Cinderella, a name given to her
by her terrible stepfamily. She cleaned, and cooked, and
did everything for them. But when her father came home
for short periods of time, Ella was Ella. She was ignored
by her stepsisters but treated with false-kindness by her
Ella never dared to tell her father about the wickedness of
his new wife. She could not bear to have her poor father’s
heart broken again.
One evening at dinner, her father sat beside his beloved
Ella and whispered to her: “I received a letter today.”
“A letter? Who from?” she whispered back, avoiding the
hot glare from her stepmother.
“The King,” he replied, smiling.
“The King!” exclaimed the stepmother.
“What does the King want with her?” screeched the eldest
“Mother! I thought you said nooo animals in the house!
Why is that THING in here?” whined the youngest.
“Cinder – I mean Ella… darling? Would you please get
your monkey off the table?” the stepmother asked through
clenched teeth.
Ella patted her lap and Zuzu hopped down. He grabbed a
piece of bread from her plate and ran out of the large
dining hall.
“What does it say?” the stepmother asked.
Ella’s father reached into his tailcoat, pulled out an
engraved letter, and handed it to Ella. She read the
handwritten words aloud: “On behalf of the King, Their
Graces the Duke and Duchess of Devonshire, you are
invited to attend the Prince’s Masquerade Ball to be held
in a fortnight.”
“Why that’s just two weeks away!” exclaimed the
“TWO weeks?” chimed the stepsisters.
For the next two
weeks, the women scampered around the house in frenzy;
they could not contain their excitement. Ella took
freedom’s opportunity to spend time with her father. They
replanted a small lily garden behind manor.
On his last night at home, Ella’s father brought her a large
box with a white ribbon on it.
“For you,” he said.
She opened it to find a pastel pink dress inside. She could,
again, feel the glare from her stepmother.
“You must go to bed, dear Ella. We all have a big day
tomorrow. The Prince’s decision will be the right one, I
suspect. My eldest is ravishing! And we must all celebrate
their soon-to-be marriage at the ball,” the stepmother
Ella bid a sad farewell to her father, scooped up the three
blind mice hiding under her new dress, and ran up the
stairs to her room. Zuzu and the rest of her tiny friends
followed her.
“No animals in the –”
Ella shut her door before her stepmother could finish.
Sleeping soundly that night, she had wonderful dreams of
the prince and the ball.
The next morning, she awoke to loud shouts and screams.
“Cinderella!” screeched the eldest stepsister.
“Cinderellaaa!” whined the youngest.
Ella was again Cinderella – a slave to her stepfamily.
She swept the floors with the corn broom, washed the
walls with the sponge, pruned the gardens with the
cutters, and prepared breakfast, lunch, and afternoon tea.
The ladies sat out in the rose garden on white chairs,
hidden under an excessively frilly umbrella. Cinderella was
called over.
“Bring down that gorgeous dress my dear husband
bought,” her stepmother commanded shrewdly.
“The pink gown?” Cinderella asked.
“Correct. Bring it down at once,” she commanded again.
“Wrap it up in that
pretty box!” the eldest quipped with a sly grin at her sister.
“With the WHITE ribbon on top!” the two stepsisters
shouted in unison. They fell into a fit of laughter as their
wicked mother sipped her tea indifferently.
For the rest of the day, Cinderella primped the ladies for
the ball. The eldest stepsister wore Cinderella’s pastel
pink gown and scolded her for working so slowly.
“Oh, goodness. She is ripe with jealousy, isn’t she?”
Cinderella overheard the stepmother remark.
“Isn’t she just? Must be hard to see such a pretty gown
look better on someone else,” screeched the eldest.
Cinderella curled their wigs, sewed their masquerade
masks, hemmed their dresses, and powdered their faces.
Then the women left for the ball in the same extravagant
horse-drawn carriage they had first arrived in.
Cinderella ran to her room and wept softly on her bed. She
heard shuffles beside her and looked up to see her tiny
friends. In front of them lay a mask.
“Did you make this for me?” she asked softly.

pushed the mask closer.
She picked up the small mask and held it up to her face.
She giggled. The mask was made up of twigs from the
birds’ nests; it had lily petals sewn on – three had been
sewn particularly poorly, but Cinderella knew the blind
mice had tried their best.
She looked at her friends, wept, and said:
“If only I could go to the ball and wear your beautiful mask.
I truly wish I could.”
Just then, a shower of golden glitter rained from the
“Oopsie! I can never make an entrance. Nice to meet ya
lady, I’m your fairy friend. The name’s Fairy but you can
call me… Well, you can call me Fairy. I never did get a
nickname. Hah huh!” squealed a high-pitched little winged
woman in a golden gown.
Cinderella and her friends backed away from the odd
creature. The fairy whooshed and swirled around the
“Did I hear
correctly? You wanna go to that big ball? It’s gonna be a
big one! Hah huh! I’ve got just the dress for you… I do!”
And with one flick of her tiny golden wand Cinderella was
dressed in a beautiful blue gown with gorgeous glass
slippers. She grabbed her mask and hurriedly followed
Fairy out of the manor.
Fairy whistled loudly and motioned Cinderella into the
silver carriage.
“Now go, go, go! Or you’re going to be late! Don’t be late!
Oopsie! Hah huh! Don’t forget lady, this only lasts until
midnight… on the dot!”
Cinderella waved goodbye to her friends and the odd fairy
creature. She held on tight as the silver carriage zoomed
towards the King’s castle.
Once she arrived at the massive stone palace, she was
escorted to the banquet hall. Upon entering the large
golden-walled and ruby-floored room, Cinderella felt all
eyes on her.
“Oh my!” and “What a wonder!” and “That mask is so
strange!” and “Her extravagance is breathtaking!” were
among the comments Cinderella heard as she passed by
Dukes and Duchesses, Lords and Ladies, all dressed in
the finest attire.
Suddenly, a handsome man bowed gently in front of her
and asked to dance. His blue eyes glimmered behind his
ruby-encrusted mask as she curtsied and took his
outstretched hand.
She danced with him for the entire night. They discussed
many things and the man was surprised at her knowledge
about business.
“You enchant me. My grandfather desires that I spend my
evening looking for the right woman, but I seem to have
found her already,” the man said.
“Your grandfather?” Cinderella asked.
“Yes, surely you know him,” the man smiled.
Just as she was about to respond, Cinderella heard the
large golden clock in the center of the banquet hall strike
As the clock began to countdown, Cinderella apologized
hurriedly and ran as fast as she could out of the palace.
She jumped into the silver carriage, dropping one of her
glass slippers. She held on tightly as the carriage zoomed
away from the palace.
Cinderella had a sleepless night, unable to get the image
of the man’s blue eyes out of her mind.
The next morning she swept the floors with the corn
broom, washed the walls with the sponge, pruned the
gardens with the cutters, and began preparing breakfast.
As she set the dining table, she could hear the wicked
ladies complaining.
“Terrible ordeal that was!” screeched the eldest.
“QUITE horrid!” whined the youngest.
“The prince was with that woman all night.”
“It’s because you wore that uuugly pink dress.”
“Now, now, girls. Come eat your breakfast. And wipe that
stunned look off your face, Cinderella. It doesn’t suit you,”
said the stepmother.
Before they could be seated, a loud knock came at the
door. The women rushed to the entrance and squealed at
the sight of the royal doorman. Cinderella came behind the
ladies slowly.
“Presenting the Prince of the Greatest Land of all Lands,”
the doorman shouted. “The woman he seeks to marry
wore this glass slipper,” he continued. The ladies squealed
“It’s a glass slipper!” Cinderella called out and moved
closer. Her stepmother shoved her away.
“Who said that?” asked a familiar voice.
“I did!” the eldest stepsister cried.
Then, she tried the slipper on with no success: the slipper
would not fit. Then, the youngest sister tried the slipper on.
Again, no triumph came for her.
Cinderella knew she could not call out again – her
stepmother would surely punish her if she did. So, she
grabbed Zuzu and began to walk up the stairs.
“Who is that?” called the familiar voice. Cinderella turned
around and caught a glimpse of the handsome blue eyes
looking up at her. The man from the ball was the Prince.
“Ella,” she replied softly.

“Ella,” the prince

repeated. He walked carefully into the manor and greeted
her with an outstretched hand. He gently slipped the glass
slipper on her foot: the perfect match.
Without a word, he led her away from her stunned wicked
stepfamily and into the royal carriage. She motioned her
tiny friends to follow. The prince looked at all the animals
in the carriage and laughed.
“You are enchanting,” he said, looking into Ella’s eyes.
The two were married as soon as they could be and had a
daughter, whom Ella named Lily. Once King and Queen,
they disallowed anyone to capture exotic animals for
captivity in menageries, set out laws that allowed the
merchant class to prosper, and lived happily ever after.
The End.

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