“You are just an ugly old toad,” said the Princess in her best pouty voice.
“My dear, toads are not ugly — frogs are ugly. I am young and handsome. So how about a little peck right here between my baby blues?”
“Hmmm,” mused the princess.
“What now? Do you want some bling? I got lots of bling. Just kiss me, and I’ll show you how much bling I got. Look, Princess, if you plant one on me, I’ll become a man again and love you forever.”
“Well, I don’t know about that. I haven’t had a lot of luck with love recently. My last suitor ate an apple that an old hag gave me, and he fell into a coma. Besides, I don’t even know your name.”
“My name is Ted, Ted Toad. Prince Edward Toad, if you really must know. Now pucker up and make with the lips.”
“You look slimy.”
“No, I’m not. Frogs are slimy; toads are soft and warm. Please kiss me, my love, and we will make beautiful yadda yadda together.”
“You are sure that you won’t forget me when you become a prince? My first lover Sir Gawain left me and went off seeking a cup.”
“Lover? I thought that you were a virgin; this may not work if you aren’t a virgin.”
“Well, I am, sorta except for those two times. Gawain and that other guy, the magician. I think that his name was Marvin. Now if I kiss you, you won’t give me the tongue, will you? I hate the tongue.”
“Look, sweetie, I’m a toad right now. Toads catch bugs with their tongues; I may not be able to help myself. Just close your eyes and think of Gawain. Or that big castle we will live in once we are married.”
“Big castle; you have a big castle?”
“Well, not at the moment. I am still a toad. Hint, hint. But I will get my lands and fortune back when you restore me to manhood .”
“How do I know that you are a prince and not just some fast-talking toad?”
“You kinda gotta trust me on that one, sweetheart. What do you have to lose? One smooch and you are rich. If you are not rich, then the worst thing you have done is to kiss a toad. I don’t kiss and tell.”
“I could get warts.”
“That’s another fairytale. Toads don’t give you warts.”
“What if you are ugly?”
“I’m not ugly; I’m a handsome prince. Just kiss me.”
“Maybe you are a wife beater.”
“I’m not a wife beater. I’m a lover, not a fighter. Smoochie. Smoochie, Baby”
“You could be married already.”
“I’m not married. Who would marry a toad?”
“You said you were a prince.”
“Well, I was before that witch with the red slippers turned me into a toad.”
“And you weren’t married?”
“Nope, but I did fool around with the village girls a little. Now it’s lip-lock time.”
“If you weren’t married or engaged there must have been something wrong with you.”
“There is nothing wrong with me; except for the fact that I happen to be a toad right now. So please plant a little peck right here between my eyes.”
“Well, okay, but if you’re lying to me, you are going to spend our honeymoon sleeping on a cold stone floor.”
And they lived happily ever after, Prince and Princess Toad in their pond by the castle on the hill.
Dick Noble is the pen name of Richard Bishop, a Calgary writer who has published several non-fiction articles, mood pieces and humour stories in North American magazines and a story in the anthology Blood on the Holly produced by the Mystery Writers of Canada. He lives more or less in harmony with his one wife, two cats, two dogs, three children and a Gecko named Piper.