retelling

Things I want from a modern retelling of Romeo and Juliet:

- Everyone is dressed in traditional costuming, but the script is in modern English.
- “Romeo, Romeo, why the FUCK did you have to be ROMEO?”
- Juliet talks like a rich white valley girl and wears a flower crown.
- She keeps taking inappropriately timed selfies and posting them on instagram.
- Tybalt won’t stop talking about his crossfit regime.
- Romeo only listens to My Chemical Romance.
- Mercutio’s Queen Mab speech is followed by Benvolio asking “Are you high right now?” (He is)
- Mercutio dabs on stage. Unironically. More than once.
- When the boys are all catcalling Nurse it’s super cringy.
- instead of “a sail! A sail!” You get “Hey Fatass!” “Fatass? I just see a boat!” “Weigh anchor! You’re gonna break the docks, Fatass!”
- Tybalt also dabs on stage, exactly twice.
- The first time is awful and his friends have to correct him.
- Tybalt dabs at Mercutio and Mercutio responds by doing a backflip and ending in a dab.
- The Tybalt/Mercutio fight is an absolutely serious dancebattle with no weapons.
- Mercutio still dies anyway.
- Tybalt tries to dance battle Romeo too, but Romeo keeps taking it too seriously and not dancing back.
- This is because Romeo only knows how to ballroom dance.
- Paris wears a trillby and calls it a fedora.
- Juliet Snapchats her own death.
- Romeo doesn’t have Snapchat.

6

THE DIVINE COMEDY + THE WAR OF THREE QUEENS 

A traveller meets the three queens and their kingdoms…

The Queen Of Heaven sits on her throne, surrounded by an absolute perfect vision of loyalty. Grand and mighty, she rules an empire built for centuries to last. Surrounded by warriors, lovers… the world awaits the Queen Of Heaven to conquer and to rule. Believing she lives in the perfect utopia which was of her making, she is a worrisome danger.

The Queen Of Purgatory is the queen of love, as that motivates her. She’s climbing, forever it seems and facing challenges that test her pride, her wrath and her gluttony. This journey does not doom this queen, but strengthens her to become the Queen she is. She must encounter sinners and saints alike in her journey, and must make key decisions that will determine her fate. 

The Queen Of Hell is a tormented soul. Labelled as the Queen Of Hell, she’s lost within her darkness. Her story is one that is tragic and sad, and the Underworld is a twisted, warped place that is mysterious and unknown. Whilst this fears off travellers, the Queen embraces the darkness. She accepts the rejects, the unholy, the sinners and creates a strong army out of it. Her kingdom is as fearful as is its unlikely. 

Click here for a Pinterest infographic of these books!

Cinderella

Sleeping Beauty

Beauty and the Beast

The Little Mermaid

The Twelve Dancing Princesses

Little Red Ridding Hood

Snow White

Rapunzel

Alice in Wonderland

The Goose Girl

Peter pan

Other Retellings

What is your favorite fairy tale retelling? Any retellings that aren’t on the list that you would recommend?

Let’s talk about an Ariel who walks away—limping, mouthing inaudible sailors’ curses, a sea-brine knife in her belt.

Ariel traded her voice for a chance to walk on land. That was the deal: every time she steps, it will feel like being stabbed by knives. She must win the hand of her one true love, or she will die at his wedding day, turn to sea foam, forgotten. The helpful steward tells her to dance for the prince, even though her feet scream each time she steps. Love is pain, the sea witch promised. Devotion calls for blood.

But how about this? When the prince marries another, nothing happens. When Ariel stands over the prince and his fiance the night before their wedding, her sisters’ hard-won knife in hand, she doesn’t decide his happiness is more important than her life. She decides that his happiness is irrelevant. Her curse does not turn on the whims of this boy’s heart. 

She does not throw away the knife and throw herself into the sea. She does not bury it in the prince and break her curse—it would not have broken. She leaves them sleeping in what will be their marriage bed and limps into a quiet night, her knife clean in her belt, her heart caught in her throat. Her feet scream, but they ache, too, for the places she has yet to see. 

Ariel will not be sea foam or a queen. There is life beyond love. There is love in just living. Her true love will not be married on the morn—the prince will be married then, in glorious splendor, but he had never been why she was here.

Ariel traded her voice for legs to stand on, a chance at another life. When she poked her head above the waves, it wasn’t the handsome biped that she fell for. It was the way the hills rolled, golden in the sun. It was the clouds chasing each other across blue sky, like sea foam you could never reach.

(She does reach it, one day, bouncing around in the back of a blacksmith’s cart, signing jokes to him in between helping to tune his guitar. They crest up a high mountain pass and into the belly of a cloud. Her breath whistles out, swirls water droplets, and she reaches out a hand to touch the sky. Her feet will scream all her life, but after that morning they ache just a little bit less). 

I want an Ariel who is in love with a world, not a prince. I don’t want her to be a moral for little girls about what love is supposed to hurt like, about how it is supposed to kill you. Ariel will be one more wandering soul, forgotten. Her voice will live in everything she does. She uses her sisters’ knife to turn a reed into a pipe. She cannot speak, but she still has lungs. 

Love is pain, says the old man, when Ariel smiles too wide at sunrises. It’s pain, says the innkeeper, with pity, as Ariel hobbles to a seat, pipe in hand. At least you are beautiful, soothes the country healer who looks over her undamaged feet. The helpful steward had thought she was shy. Dance for the prince even though your feet feel stuck with a hundred knives.

Her feet feel like knives but she goes out dancing in the grass at midnight anyway. She’s never seen stars before. Moonlight reaches down through the depths, but starlight fractures on the surface. Ariel dances for herself.

She goes down to caves and rocky shores. Sometimes she meets with her sisters there. Mouths filled with water cannot speak above the sea, so she drops into the waves and they sing to her, old songs, and she steals breaths of air between the stanzas. She can drown now. She holds her breath. She opens her eyes to the salt and brine. 

Ariel uses canes and takes rides on wagons filled with hay, chickens, tomatoes—never fish. She earns coins and paper scraps of money with a conch shell her youngest sister swam up from the depths for her, with her reed pipe, with a lyre from her eldest sister which sounds eerie and high out of the water. The shadow plays she makes on the walls of taverns waver and wriggle like on the sea caves of her childhood, but not because of water’s lap and current. It is the firelight that flickers over her hands. 

When she has limped and hitched rides so far that no one knows the name of her prince’s kingdom, she meets a travelling blacksmith on the road with an extra seat in his cart and an ear for music. He never asks her to dance for him and she never does. She drops messages in bottles to her sisters, at every river and coastline they come to, and sometimes she finds bottles washed up the shore just for her. 

They travel on. When she breathes, these days, her lungs fill with air.

Some nights she wakes, gasping, coughing up black water that never comes. There is something lying heavy on her chest and there always will be.

Somewhere in the ocean, a sea witch thinks she has won. When Ariel walks, she hobbles. Her voice was the sunken treasure of the king’s loveliest daughter, and so when they tell Ariel’s story they say she has been robbed. They say she has been stolen. 

She has many instruments because she has many voices—all of them, hers; made by her hands, or gifted from her sisters’ dripping ones. Ariel will sing until the day she dies with every instrument but her vocal cords. 

She cannot win it back, the high sweet voice of a merchild who had never blistered her shoulders red with sun, who had never made a barroom rise to its feet to sing along to her strumming fingers. She cannot ever again sing like a girl who has not held a dagger over two sleeping lovers and then decided to spare them. She decided not to wither. She decided to walk on knives for the rest of her life. She cannot win it back, but even if she could, she knows she would not sound the same. 

They call her story a tragedy and she rests her aching feet beside the warming hearth. With every new ridge climbed, new river forded, new night sky met, her feet ache a little less. They call her a tragedy, but the blacksmith’s donkey is warm and contrary on cold mornings. The blacksmith’s shoulder is warm under her cheek.

Her feet will always hurt. She has cut out so many parts of her self, traded them up, won twisted promises back and then twisted them herself. She lives with so many curses under her skin, but she lives. They call her story a moral, and maybe it is.

When she breathes, her lungs fill. When she walks, the earth holds her up. There is sun and there is light and she can catch it in her hands. This is love. 

2

As soon as I watched @tilly-and-her-books recent book haul~ I went and bought this stunner. Howard is one of my favourite authors and I greatly enjoyed her retelling of Alice in Wonderland (and Morpheus lol).
I’m in love with this cover, it’s darkly beautiful~ I hope the story inside is just the same!

Mor is Peter Pan

Remember that human queen Mor fell in love with? And then the next time Mor saw her, she was married and had kids. What if Mor falls in love with one of her grandchildren? Just like how Peter Pan married Wendy’s granddaughter.

Inspired by THIS POST about gay Disney Princesses. 


When the old beggar comes to the door, Addy knows better than to let her in. She doesn’t look at the rose or the woman too long; she shuts the door.

Some will call her arrogant or selfish, but what is she to do? No guards, parents in the capital (not, here, not here), and the knowledge that she is the damsel in all those fairy tales weighs heavily on her mind. Oh, little princess, far from home and alone, so alone.

The Enchantress (for they do not call her witch) makes sure that she stays that way.

Alone except for her wilting rose.

(She did not want it, would not take it, so she was bound to it. Such is the way of Princesses.)

———————————-

Addy used to have frightful bursts of temper. Her face would turn red, fat tears rolling down her cheeks, mouth screwed into an upside down kidney bean. Anything could set her off; a too tight corset, a walk ended too quickly, another toy sword taken away. She’d wail and scream, kick her feet and punch the air, tear and rend anything within arm’s reach.

The first time she has a fit in her new form, it’s after Mrs. Potts reads the King and Queen’s decision on her…condition. She’s to stay here, on the outskirts of their kingdom, until a Prince comes to release her from her spell. Alone until a different sort of bond is forced on her, until she is made to change from princess to beast to bride.

Addy know why they refuse to save her. It’s because she’s always been too big, too strong, too ill-tempered, too–

In her rage, Addy upends the tea tray, forgetting, forgetting, forgetting.

She is reminded when fine china falls to the hard ground, when it rattles, when it shatters, when it screams.

“No!” Addy falls to her knees next to her dishes– no, her friends and frantically rights them, apologies tumbling from her lips, eyes brimming with tears.

“Temper,” Mrs. Potts murmurs, more out of reflex than anything, looking obviously terrified. She hops from her side to her base, better able to control her new body than any other castle resident. Her lid is sitting askew and her eyes are wide (so wide) as they dart from one cup to another. “Daniel? Daniel!”

Addy cuts herself on broken porcelain and flinches. She–she’d killed him, she’d been so thoughtless, how could she? “I’m sorry, I’m sorry, I’m sorry–”

“I’m okay,” a little voice says. “I’m okay, Mom!”

 Addy sobs as she locates him under the silver platter, on his side, trapped. She throws the platter too hard, lodging it in the wall, and takes Daniel in her paws.  

“It’s okay, Princess Addy,” Daniel chirps at her. He’s a little older than her, just a few years, and he’s always trying to be strong. His eyes are wide (too wide), but he offers her a tremulous smile. “I’m okay.”

“Thank goodness,” Mrs. Potts says and her china clinks as she hops forward. 

Addy’s eyes lock on the horrible, huge chip in his rim. 

I did that.

She’s across the room before being aware of setting Daniel down, of standing, of leaping away.

“Princess,” Mrs. Potts says from her low, low position on the floor. “What–”

“Don’t call me that,” Addy grits out. Her huge body leans heavily against the door, making it groan, as she desperately tries to wrap her paw around the handle. She can’t stop looking at the chip, the proof of harm, the proof that something much worse can happen so easily. “Don’t call me– I’m not–I’m not the Princess. I’m the Beast.”

The door crashes open and she disappears.

————————————————

It’s weeks before the servants realize that she’s never going to answer to her name again. She no longer sleeps in her princess bed or attempts to wear her princess clothes. She wears pants scavenged from the servants’ quarters, tunics from her father’s closet, ties her mane back with twine instead of ornaments.

“Addy!” they call. “Princess Addy!”

The Beast doesn’t even know who that is.

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punsbulletsandpointythings  asked:

Your myth retellings are gorgeous. Would you tell another please? Maybe something with Hermes?

Pandora is made from earth, shaped by the hands of Hephaestus and made in the image of his beloved wife. Aphrodite gifts her with grace and charisma. Athena teaches her to weave and bestows cleverness upon her.

She stands in front of Hermes, and the god frowns and touches her with a single fingertip on her chin, moving her head one way than the other. “They’ll eat you alive,” he says, and she doesn’t understand.

She tilts her head to the side and smiles a vacant smile. All of the cleverness in the world will do her no good without any context. “We are the same,” she says, pressing a hand to Hermes’s chest. She is made from earth and has the skin to mach. He is a celestial god, and his skin is the same rich shade of brown.

He did not ask to be born any more than his mother asked to bare him. His creation, just like hers, is at the whims of Zeus. All for some little lost fire, all because Prometheus wanted his people to be warm, and, well, he is the god of the thieves after all –

So he gifts her with deceit, with selfishness, with cunning. Her smile leaves her face all at once as she’s filled with self-awareness. “He’ll be angry with you,” she says, “I am not what you were supposed to make.”

“Gods have short memories,” he says, and doesn’t bother to hide the contempt in his voice. “Do not worry about me, gifted child. You have larger problems than my fate.”

He has turned her from something pure into – something more like him. Her face darkens even further as her perfectly crafted mind slots all the pieces together, and he can’t help but find her lovely. It’s how she was made, after all. “I can’t stop it, can I? Whatever they’re planning for me to do?”

“No,” Hermes says, “but now you might be able to survive it.”

“Will I want to?” she asks, and he doesn’t answer. She doesn’t expect him too.

~

She hides from everyone, lives in a cave at the edge of the city. The gods had called her the first woman, but that’s not true, she can see.

There are women. They smile and laugh have work roughened hands. She aches to join them, but she has the beauty of a goddess. They will know. If she joins them, they will know she is not of them, and it will set into motion whatever trap Zeus has planned.

She is not human, not in the same way, molded from clay by a god’s hands. But she is of humans, and not eager to bestow upon them the harm she’s destined to bring them. She bathes in streams where only nymphs reside, steals into the city in the cloak of night and pilfers from the baker’s trash.

“When they said they sent my brother a wife,” a low, amused voice says too close behind her one night, “I had not expected a begger.”

She whirls around, hard bread clenched tight in front of her, an incredibly inefficient shield. Her breath catches in her throat when she sees him, dark and tall and eyes like the night sky. He looks like Hermes. Like her. “Who are you?” she demands. They’re in an alley corner, and of her gifts flight is not among them. She’ll have to fight him to get away.

She’s not afraid of him. Maybe another mortal would be, cornered in the middle of the night by a man she doesn’t know. But she’s no normal mortal woman, and besides – he has something comforting about him, like the hearthfire attended by Hestia. Something warm.

“I am Prometheus,” says the man, and no wonder he reminds her of fire. “What do they call you?”

“You are meant to be in the deepest pits of Hades’s realm,” she snaps, and shifts her grip on the stale bread so that she can throw it at him. He’s the whole reason she’s here to begin with, him and his thievery.

He shrugs and walks closer to her, watching her like one would watch a wild animal. Good. Here, in this dark alley where no one would find a cooling body until morning, it is he that should be afraid. “Gods forget,” he says, “and Hades had grown cold in his place beneath the earth.”

She pauses, considers. “You stole fire for Hades?”

“No,” he corrects, “I stole fire for the people. But Hades benefited as well. Enough that he was willing to forget the terms of my punishment.”

“What do you want?” she asks for the second time. “Why are you here?”

He stops, too close to her, “The question is why are you here?”

She steps into his space now, following him as he backs away from her, “I am here because of you, fire-stealer, because gods may forget but they do not forgive, and I am the punishment they have unleashed upon the world.”

“What a punishment you are,” he says, looking at her lips, and she forgets to hate him only long enough to kiss him.

~

Hermes watches her, watches them. He doesn’t know Zeus’s plan, if this is part of it or not, but he watches her, and he worries. He thinks it is, he can see Aphrodite’s magic clinging to Pandora, but he doesn’t know why.

He would go to his mother, but she’s always difficult to find, Gaea preferring to live in streams and rivers rather than face the man she bore a son for. But his mother’s father, on the other hand, is always in the same place.

“Grandfather,” Hermes greets, touching lightly down onto the earth, “How are you?”

“How am I always, boy?” Atlas grunts out, legs and arms straining as he holds up the sky above the earth. “Tired.”

Hermes lips quirk up the corners. Some days, he thinks he’s more Atlas’s grandson than he’s Zeus’s son. “I need some advice, Grandfather.”

Atlas raises an eyebrow, “I’m listening.”

So Hermes tells him everything, from beginning to end, because he can’t figure out what his father’s plan is, but Atlas might. He’s known the man for longer, at least.

Atlas nods, slow, and says, “A bride of gods, a gifted child. I can think of only one reason to create such a child.” Hermes waits. Atlas sighs and says, “There is a jar, within Olympus, that becomes sealed when it leaves the realm of the gods. After that, only a being neither mortal nor celestial may open it.”

“What are they planning to put inside?” Hermes demands, heart spiking. What are they planning to unleash upon the unsuspecting earth?

His grandfather smirks, “It doesn’t matter. What matters is this – what are you going to put inside?”

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