That evening, Cassandra was in the throne room, listening to the royal musicians playing. Romeo was standing close by. It had been his idea to have the royal musicians play for her. He believed that the music would be able to help Cassandra feel relaxed. Cassandra didn’t really want to listen to music. She wanted to see David again. She needed him to help her find the book. If Prince David was anything like the David from her school, he would be able to help her.
The throne room doors then opened. Cassandra felt her heart flutter as she saw David walk in. He was wearing the same royal clothes that he had worn when he had woken her up from the sleeping curse in her one dream. David smiled when he saw Cassandra. “There you are my lovely one.” He said as he removed his gloves. He went up to Cassandra and kissed her. “How was your day?”
Cassandra smiled. She tried not to giggle. “I need your help with something.” She told David. “I lost something that I really like and I want your help with finding it.”
David raised an eyebrow. “If it’s your True Love, I say you just found it again.” He told her before he chuckled. He sat down next to Cassandra. “What is it you need help with?”
Cassandra looked at David. “I lost a book that is very important to me and I need to find it.” She told him. The David from her school had gotten her books back from the mean girls. Hopefully, this one would be just as helpful.
To her shock, David laughed. “A book?” He asked. “You need help finding some book?” He looked at Romeo. “My princess needs to find some book.” He told Romeo. The two boys laughed.
“David, I’m serious.” Cassandra told David. “This book is very important to me. I had it with me right before my accident earlier today and I think it might be able to help me realize why it happened or how I ended up here.”
David’s face turned dark. “You’re here because I woke you up with True Love’s Kiss.” He told Cassandra in a serious and, somewhat scary, voice. He then looked at Romeo again. “This is what happens when you let girls read books.” He told Romeo. “All they will think about are books.”
Cassandra’s heart sank. This David was nothing like the one she really liked. How was that possible though? The middle school David was the reason why this one looked the way he did. She stood up. “If you won’t help me, then I’ll find someone who will.” She told David before she rushed out of the throne room.
Cassandra ran to an empty hallway before she leaned against the wall and closed her eyes. What was going on? This was all wrong. David was supposed to be compassionate and understanding. Why was he acting like this?
“Enjoying your new life?” Cassandra opened her eyes. A strange man was standing there. He was wearing a white suit with a white top hat on. He had a cane in his hand. On top of the cane was an hourglass. There was sand dripping from the top of it to the bottom. The man had a smile on his face. “You’re getting everything you ever wanted.” The way that he said it made Cassandra scared.
“Who are you?” Cassandra asked in a scared voice.
“Me? I’m the Keeper of Stories. And I’m here to help your story stay on track.” The man said with a sly grin as he bowed dramatically.
“What do you mean?” Cassandra asked.
The man went up to her. “You wanted your life to be like a fairy tale after you had a dream about being with that boy in the throne room.” The Keeper of Stories explained. “I simply helped make it happen.” He smiled and laughed. “Now your life is like a fairy tale and that includes everything that comes with it.” The Keeper of Stories laughed as he said that last bit.
Cassandra shook her head. “This isn’t a fairy tale!” She cried. “It’s becoming a nightmare! David doesn’t really treat me like a prince does in the stories!”
The Keeper of Stories rolled his eyes. “Do you really think that the stories just end with “And they lived happily ever after”? No. There’s more to their lives that happen before and after.” He told Cassandra. “Which means, since you already had your dreams about him finding you, saving you and bringing you here, it’s time for your fairy tale to continue after the ever after.”
“I don’t want this life!” Cassandra shouted. “I want to go back to my real life!” She pinched herself in an attempt to wake herself up. “Why can’t I go back to my life?”
The Keeper of Stories shrugged. “Probably because you don’t have the right key.” He told her. “You can only escape with the right key and the right way to leave this fairy tale.”
Cassandra thought about what the Keeper of Stories just said. She realized what the key was. It was the one thing that she couldn’t find yet. “The book that the homeless guy gave me.” She said. “That’s the key.”
The Keeper of Stories snarled at her. “You will never find that book.” He told her. “I’ve hidden it well here before you woke up.” He then backed away from Cassandra. “You’re trapped here so just get used to this life.” With that, the Keeper of Stories disappeared into a sand pile.
Cassandra shook her head. “I’m gonna find a way to escape this place.” She said. “Just watch me.”