twelve dancing princesses


a short comic about the twelve dancing princesses!

in the original fairy tale, the princesses drug a whole lot of hopeful would-be princes, fully aware they’ll be executed in the morning. and then they dance all night, every night, so hard they shred their shoes. that’s…always unsettled me a bit. the princesses might not be actively malicious, but they’re not really kind, either, and they’re definitely not human.

what always surprised me the most, though, is the guy who sees these casually murderous dance machines and goes ‘i wanna marry one’ instead of ‘fuck this shit i’m out’. so this is the comic about that other guy.


YA Retellings brought to you by Epic Reads - Fairy Tale Retellings:

Beauty and the Beast: East by Edith Pattou / Sun and Moon, Ice and Snow by Jessica Day George / Rose Daughter by Robin McKinley / Cruel Beauty by Rosamund Hodge / Spirited by Nancy Holder / Heart’s Blood by Juliet Marillier / The Princess and the Hound by Mette Ivie Harrison / Stung by Bethany Wiggins / The Hollow Kingdom by Clare B. Dunkle / Beastly by Alex Flinn / Beauty by Robin McKinley / Of Beast and Beauty by Stacey Jay

The Little Mermaid: September Girls by Bennett Madison / Fathomless by Jackson Pearce / Monstrous Beauty by Elizabeth Fama / Midnight Pearls by Cameron Dokey / Mermaid: A Twist on a Classic Tale by Carolyn Turgeon

Cinderella: Just Ella by Margaret Peterson Haddix / Ella Enchanted by Gail Carson Levine / Princess of Glass by Jessica Day George / Throne of Glass by Sarah J. Maas / If I have A Wicked Stepmother, Where’s My Prince? by Melissa Kantor / Gilded Ashes by Rosamund Hodge / Shadows on the Moon by Zoe Marriott / Cinder by Marissa Meyer / Before Midnight by Cameron Dokey / Ash by Malinda Lo

Rumpelstiltskin: A Curse As Dark As Gold by Elizabeth C. Bunce / Spinners by Donna Jo Napoli / The Crimson Thread by Suzanne Weyn

The Frog Prince: Cloaked by Alex Flinn / Enchanted by Alethea Kontis / The Door in the Hedge by Robin McKinley / Water Song by Suzanne Weyn

The Snow Queen: Cold Spell by Jackson Pearce / Winter’s Child by Cameron Dokey / Stork by Wendy Delsol

Little Red Riding Hood: Red Riding Hood by Sarah Blakley-Cartwright / Scarlet by Marissa Meyer / The Book of Lost Things by John Connolly / Sisters Red by Jackson Pearce / Scarlet Moon by Debbie Viguié / Dust City by Robert Paul Weston

Twelve Dancing Princesses: Entwined by Heather Dixon / The Phoenix Dance by Dia Calhoun / The Night Dance by Suzanne Weyn / Princess of the Midnight Ball by Jessica Day George / Wildwood Dancing by Juliet Marillier

Hansel and Gretel: Sweetly by Jackson Pearce / Bewitching by Alex Flinn / Greta and the Goblin King by Chloe Jacobs

Rapunzel: Bitter Greens by Kate Forsyth / Rapunzel Untangled by Cindy C. Bennett / Towering by Alex Flinn / Cress by Marissa Meyer / Golden by Cameron Dokey / Zel by Donna Jo Napoli

Snow White: Beauty by Nancy Ohlin / Snow by Tracy Lynn / The Glass Casket by McCormick Templeman / The Rose and the Beast by Francesca Lia Block / The Serpent’s Shadow by Mercedes Lackey / Nameless by Lili St. Crow / Fairest by Gail Carson Levine / Tender Morsels by Margo Lanagan (*this is actually a retelling of “Snow White and Rose Red”) / Devoured by Amanda Marrone

Sleeping Beauty: A Kiss in Time by Alex Flinn / Briar Rose by Jane Yolen / Beauty Sleep by Cameron Dokey / Princess of Thorns by Stacey Jay / The Healer’s Apprentice by Melanie Dickerson / Spindle’s End by Robin McKinley / Kill Me Softly by Sarah Cross / A Long, Long Sleep by Anna Sheehan


Fairy Tale Au Meme: [3/5 Genre Swaps- The Twelve Dancing Princesses at Hogwarts]

A group of restless young witches, while running away from a very tenacious Filch, find a magical room somewhere in the depths of Hogwarts. As if reading their minds, the room provides beautiful dresses and down another flight of stairs- a magical ballroom. The girls return regularly, frustrating not only their Head of Houses but the Head Boy, who has vowed to discover where they disappear every night.

Fairy Tale Meme:

3 Locations/Kingdoms - [The Underground from The Twelve Dancing Princesses]

Down they all went, and at the bottom they found themselves in a most delightful grove of trees; and the leaves were all of silver, and glittered and sparkled beautifully….They came to another grove of trees, where all the leaves were of gold; and afterwards to a third, where the leaves were all glittering diamonds…They went on till they came to a great lake; On the other side of the lake stood a fine, illuminated castle from which came the merry music of horns and trumpets.


fairy tale au meme: [1/1 location changes]


With that they got up, opened wardrobes, presses, cupboards, and brought out pretty dresses; dressed themselves before the mirrors, sprang about, and rejoiced at the prospect of the dance. Only the youngest said, “I know not how it is; you are very happy, but I feel very strange; some misfortune is certainly about to befall us.” (x)

Fairy Tale Meme.

1 Fairytale: Twelve Dancing Princesses.

“This is truly a magical kingdom,” the eldest mused as she gracefully spun in the centre of the circle the twelve girls had made for themselves. The youngest followed her eldest sister’s lead, and took the hand of her twin as she spun. Both their eyes sparkled.

“Let us stay forever!” they pleaded, the two of them coming to a stop and turning to face their sisters. “Please let us stay here and dance.”

But the other sisters shook their heads very forcefully. The eldest landed with a perfect stop, and crouched in front of her two youngest siblings.

“I would like to stay as much as you. But we are princesses of our own kingdom, and we have duties; ones which we cannot ignore.”

The twins’ shoulders sagged a little and they bowed their heads. The eldest smiled and touched at their chins, causing them to look at her once more.

“I did not however, say we must stay away forever. This is after all a place for dreams. In dreams, we can do anything.”

“Even dance?”

“Even dance.”

And so they did. Every night, they would dance and dance until the day when the magic kingdom that they visited every night was nothing but a distant memory in their minds.