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Fantasy Funny Kids

I remember now, years later, that bittersweet day when our lives changed irrevocably forever. A heads up would have been nice. But, oh no, Mr Ugly Duckling had to be all dramatic and incredibly sadistic. But wait, I'm getting ahead of myself. This is the story of me and my family.

I am called Sabrina Swan of the great Swan Family. My founding ancestor was of course Mr. Ugly Duckling who turned out to be a Swan. We were deemed to be special, a clan of Swans who grew up slowly like humans and attained ripe old ages like them...quite different from the other swans. So, we were something like royalty. Of course, I didn't think like that.

Of course, that Silly Old Duffer probably did.

Now, I had mixed feelings about this illustrious ancestor of mine. Granted, he thought that he was an ugly duck who actually turned out to be a beautiful Swan, but that did nothing to humble him or anything. In fact, quite the opposite was achieved.

Oh the horror! I still remember those days, when That Old Boring Duck ( for to me a Duck he is and will always remain) called up his innumerable descendants as a flock to his miserable hideout. (I should have suspected something even then. His hideout! Somewhere to hide. How cunning he was!) He told us, day after day, the same old story of how beautiful he realised he was, after a long, long time. And how we would realise we were beautiful too, if we learn to look within ourselves and somesuch yarn similar to that. I would sit there, muttering curses and phrases like , 'you Ugly Old Bore!'

To be frank, I realise now that he was a charismatic speaker. But therein ends his virtues.

Bloody Rascal.

I was named after the character Audrey Hepburn played in the movie, 'Sabrina'. Thanks to my dad, who was a house swan, and whose human 'dream girl' happened to be Audrey Hepburn.

Hence, my elder sister Eliza, and me, Sabrina. My little brother was named Audrey. My father had realized by then that names could be unisex. I suppose if I had another sister, she would have been named 'Holly'.

So, Eliza, Audrey and I grew up in that protected home environment with those occasional early dawn visits to That Old Bore when our humans slept. Why? Because that was tradition, said Mom. I knew she hated that Old Duffer as much as me.

However, Eliza the Great and Good, loves tradition and history and all that - and I think that girl actually loved those visits.

Audrey pretended to be sick at times to escape it.

My dad needed his 'morning sleep' or so he said. (Are mornings for sleeping, Dad?)

So Eliza, my mom and I visited That Old Bore most of the time because...I had nothing better to do.

Sometimes my mom played hookey as well and I was stuck with the adoring Eliza. I did it out of a courtesy - no one can accuse me of being rude.

It was on one such occasion that IT happened. The morning was bitterly cold and I was squatting halfheartedly with Eliza who was slightly bigger and slender and could fly longer distances than I. Meanwhile, That Old Bore droned on and on. (The same old story, how did he do it? Exactly the same words. I strongly suspect that if he had said one word extra, he feared that we would find out his nasty secret).

I was dozing off as usual. That Old Bore likely wouldn't catch me - I was betting on my belief that he was half blind and well...he had a lot of his adoring and fawning descendants crowded around him. Like Eliza in the front row. Me, I was a perpetual middle bencher. Convenient to sleep if I wanted to and no clever back row targeting. I'm safe, I thought smugly. Wrong.

Then I saw IT. At first, it seemed like there was a human standing, just a few yards away. In my half asleep state, I thought I had imagined it. I struggled to wake. Humans could be dangerous, and if a human with a gun sees a flock of swans like this one, it could be doubly dangerous.

It WAS a human. And the human was looking straight at the flock. I grew uneasy. I was ready to sound the alarm.

There was no need and basically, there was no time. Because, the next moment we were all changing into humans! It was a terrible sight to see. Necks and legs and feathers in all the wrong places.

Yes, even That Old Bore got changed into an ugly old man with a head full of white hair and a strange mud coloured beard. Ew.

I looked down at my hands. Yes. Hands. I screamed.

I then saw Eliza, somehow, I recognized those eyes, yes, it was Eliza...running towards me. She was a fully grown up girl now, around 20 yrs, human age.

"What the ***!", Eliza swore. Now, that was an improvement. My model sister swearing.

There was again no time to register surprise or shock because That Old Bore had descended upon us and snarled, "You there, Sabrina! Here, now!"

I scowled. Me? I didn't do this! Silly Old Man.

It turned out that I did. It turned out that the Old Rascal was lying all along. He had been a human who got himself turned into a Duck and finally to a Swan. His whole romanticized story was a fake!

(In retrospect, probably one part of his story was partly the truth. The swan or even the duck would have been a vast improvement from the Silly Old Duffer's human form. Ugh. He looked horrible.)

Now, you may ask me, why we got turned back to humans at that exact moment. Because, surprise, surprise...Sabrina the Swan had turned 19 just then. And of course, as is usual in such cases, there was some obscure prophecy all along- about a descendant of the Silly Old Duffer that when she turns exactly 19 years of age , blah, blah, blah, then the curse would be reversed , blah blah , yada yada blah blah. Guess whose birthday it had to be that very day and that exact moment? My father always had fondly said I was born in the early dawn. Romantic, he sighed.

Me, of course. How sweet. ( I could have killed that Silly Old Duffer right then. He called us to his little hole everyday to fill us with his lies? And now who's caught in between? Me! )

EPILOGUE: Human life turned out to be infinitely more complex than Swan life. But, well, atleast our family did well.

The Great Eliza Dolittle lived upto to her namesake. She became a professor of linguistics. "Romantic", sighed my father again. I agreed.

My Mom and Dad lived well into a grand old age. They kept swans! Strangely, we used the Silly Old Duffer's wealth. He had it stashed in various places.

He was apparently once a good looking (I don't believe this part), wily (and nasty) man with supernatural skills- which he used against unsuspecting people. Turns out he was cursed for one his cunning little games that he played. And the last one he played it on, was...well, I'll tell you about that sometime later.

Audrey surprised us all by settling down to a quiet life in the countryside with my wonderful sister-in-law and their lovely family. ( I personally thought he would become a bandit. No offense).

Our house humans were astonished to find that their five beloved swans had just vanished into thin air one fine day. They survived the shock, though, and in due course, my life again became entwined with theirs.

And what about me, you may ask? I - Sabrina- whose birth happened to change my whole family's life- that too is a story for later.

I bid you adieu.

April 06, 2022 02:53

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1 comment

15:25 Apr 14, 2022

A fun spin on the old tale! Well done. I love the sarcasm hidden amongst the story as it gave the story a fun personality. Well done!


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