My novella, "Have You Heard the One About the Fairy Godmother?" which I'm giving away free to everyone who signs up for my mailing list (see the sign-up field on the main page of this site), is close to being finished.
Here's a little preview scene. Here's the set-up: The story focuses on a young fairy, Delikaty, who has just entered the human realm to begin her mission of helping others. It eventually becomes a rip-roaring tale of romance, wicked stepmothers and palace intrigue, but begins with the meeting of Delikaty and the first recipient of her assistance, Prince Bennet of Duncanshire. Bennet is traveling to Gracent to ask for Princess LilyBeth's hand in marriage, but is concerned that the princess won't like the look of him. Delikaty suggests that she make him a Sunbeam Potion. It's not a love potion, but one that removes any outside distractions, much like being the focus of a bright sunbeam. Problem is, Delikaty can't find one particular root required to complete the potion, so she selects a substitute and hopes for the best. Here's what happens:
Delikaty held up the beaker. “I have your potion. Shall we give it a try?”
“Of course!” He pointed to a nearby stand of trees jutting from the forest. “Let us take rest over in the shade.”
Bennet tied his horse to a low branch of a tree and removed its saddle and blanket. He then removed his sword and cloak, which he dropped against the tree trunk.
“Now,” he said, turning toward Delikaty, who had landed. “Let’s give this potion a try.” He took the flask, removed the cork and smelled the contents. “Well, it’s not one of Duncanshire’s fine vintages, but then again, it was only made this morning.” He held it up. “Cheers!” The prince took a big swallow, then replaced the cork.
“I hope the taste wasn’t too bad,” Delikaty said. “To be totally forthcoming, this was my first potion all on my own.”
Bennet smiled. “It was fine, dear fairy. What should I be feeling right now?”
“Well, you won’t feel much of anything, I’m afraid. We’ll have to journey on farther and wait to see what effect it has on the women of the countryside.”
“I see. Well, in the meantime, let’s just take a rest and … Whoa!”
Bennet staggered back and steadied himself on the tree trunk. His head rocked slowly and his eyelids drooped. He seemed suddenly drunk.
Delikaty’s eyes widened. “Prince! What’s happening?”
A groggy Bennet replied, “I was about to ask you the same …”
With a jolt, he stood upright, his eyes popping open to their widest. He fell back against the tree, then gasped.
Delikaty took a cautious step forward. “Prince, are you all ... Wait, what are you doing?”
Prince Bennet was removing his boots.
"Prince, do you think that's a good idea now? What if we need to ... Now what are you doing?"
Prince Bennet was removing his trousers, both outerwear and underwear. Tossing them aside he faced Delikaty, revealing himself to the fairy in his full glory, which was, it must be noted, becoming more glorious by the second. He watched, somewhat impressed and, to be sure, proud as it came to attention.
He smiled at her. "Something tells me, my dear fairy, that your potion did not have its desired effect."
Have You Heard the One About the Fairy Godmother? will be completed soon. All subscribers to my mailing list will receive a link to their free copy.