There was sudden silence in the room. The Queen gave a quick glance around and then nodded dismissively. "It's clear that no one in this room could possibly be a real princess. Just take the shoe and let's get out of here." She turned in a grand sweeping arc, muttering under her breath about sending a boy to do a woman's work, and gave a startled grunt of pain as she ran into what felt like a brick wall and was propelled backwards. In trying not to trip she grabbed on to the first solid object she could find. This would be the King's arm.
Unfortunately this would be the same arm that was holding the glass slipper. As he instinctively raised his arm in protection, the King lost his grip on the glass slipper and it flew through the air, landing on the stone floor and shattering into pieces. For a moment no one could speak but only stare in horror at the sparkling shards that littered the floor. The Queen found her voice first. "What the h..." she began.
"Hello Loose Lips," Mrs. Gottenmuter calmly said. "I thought it was you the other night, but the hair color threw me off. Nice shade though. Clairol?"
The Queen was turning an alarming shade of purple and she opened her mouth to speak.
"There, did you all see it?" Mrs. Gottenmuter punctuated her question by pointing to the Queen. All heads swiveled in the Queen's direction. "Just like when she was a girl. Every time she would get ready to tell a lie her nose would kind of twitch and her eyebrow would start to arch."
The entire room stared at the Queen's face. Indeed there was a tiny twitch in the Queen's nose and a raise to her eyebrow. The King was heard muttering, "She told me it was caused by allergies."
The Queen quickly marshaled her wits and decided that the best defense would be an offense. "Look what you have done!" the Queen yelled, pointing at the pieces of the broken slipper. "Thanks to you my son will never find his true princess!" Murmurs of assent began to circulate throughout the room.
"You always did make a fuss over nothing," was Mrs. Gottenmuter's answer as she came more fully into the room. "Just what in heavens name is so important about a glass slipper?"
"Of course it's important!" the Queen yelled. "Everyone knows that only the true princess could fit that shoe! It's the true litmus test and now you have ruined everything!"
"So let me get this straight. If a girl can wear the glass slipper then she is for sure the right princess and nothing else matters?"
"Of course," answered the Queen.
Mrs. Gottenmuter stepped firmly into the center of the room and with one hand swept her skirts up off the floor. "Be careful of what you wish for Queenie," and she pointed to her feet. There, in all their splendor, was a perfectly matched pair of glass slippers.
A gasp arose from the crowd.
To Be Continued
And the plot thickens.... Great Job! Keep it up!
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