Long ago in a place far away and in a time almost forgotten there lived a princess named Belladora. The name was given her by her father because it meant “beautiful one”. She certainly was beautiful for her long brown hair flowed down to her waist and her skin was as fair as a pink rose in summer. Belladora lived in a very tall castle with her mother and father. She had no sisters and brothers for her to play with so her father gave her a snow white dog with long fur. His eyes were as blue as the sky and Belladora loved him so very much she allowed him to sleep with her in her room. She named her beloved dog Snow for you could not tell him from the snow in the winter months.
As time went by Snow grew to be a very big dog and Belladora loved to ride on his back and roll in the meadow with him. He was very kind and loving to only Belladora. He protected her from anything that could harm her. The two were never apart!
One day while they were frolicking in the meadow Snow began to growl and the fur upon his back stood straight up. Belladora stood up and looked around to see what Snow was upset about. She saw nothing at all but Snow continued to growl.It wasn’t long before they were surrounded by a pack of wild wolves. They were hungry and looking for a good meal. It appeared they thought Belladora and Snow just might be what they were looking for. The pack kept moving closer and closer. Belladora was petrified for she had heard her father talk about such things and knew the wolves were vicious creatures. Snow stood his ground never backing up at all.
Fear and panic swept over Belladora. She didn’t know what to do. She could not leave Snow to fight all alone but there was nothing she could do to help him. She began to scream to the top of her voice hoping someone would hear her and come to rescue them. Tears rolled down her cheeks and she trembled at the sight of the wolves huge teeth. The largest of the wolves moved closer to Belladora and Snow attacked. All the other wolves joined determined to kill Snow and eat them both. Snow’s beautiful snow white fur began to turn red with blood. It was hopeless. Snow was no match for six wolves yet he kept them from Belladora.
Just then there came a burst of light and it covered all the dogs like a giant fog. It began to whirl around and around. Faster and faster the light whirled then began to lift up into the air. Belladora could hardly see the light was so bright. Finally she could see Snow lying on the ground beneath the swirling light. She ran over throwing her small body over his. The light sped higher and faster until it disappeared. The wolves were caught up inside the whirling light and were taken far up into the heavens never to be seen again. How could this be Belladora thought? What was this light? Where did it come from? She didn’t understand but was so happy. Snow was bloody but seemed to be alright.
Belladora began to ponder what had just happened. Her mother had always told her about a guardian angel God has assigned to protect her. Could this have been that angel coming to her rescue? If not, then what?
“What in the world was that?” Snow Questioned as he feebly stood to his feet.
“Was that you Snow? Did you say something or did it come from someone else?” Belladora asked quite perplexed at the voice that had just spoken.
“Of course I did! Snow said. “Who else is there around here but the two of us?’
“Well gosh! I never knew you could talk. Why have you never talked before now?” she questioned.
“I just don’t know.” Snow answered thinking of the sudden ability he now had. “ I reckon it must have had something to do with that bright light that surrounded us. Maybe it gave my brain an extra special ability or something!” He tilted his head up and down. Then he stood up with his head hanging down to see if something might fall out. “Nope! It is just me, nothing added that I can see.”
The two of them sat down in the middle of the meadow trying to figure out how it came to be that Snow could now speak. The only thing they could figure out was that the angel or whatever it was that came to their rescue must have given Snow a very special gift. All the other wolves were taken away by the light and there they sat in a world of bewilderment. How would Belladora ever be able to explain this and if she did, would they take her precious Snow away?It was too much of a risk. She would never give up Snow and Snow would never leave her so they figured the best thing to do was not to tell anyone anything at all.
The castle halls were quiet with only whispers at night. Snow was very careful not to speak to anyone but Belladora. Snow always lay across the foot of Belladora’s bed always near to protect her from all evil things. Not a word was spoken about the happening for no one really understood what had happened. People would think Belladora had lost her mind if she told about the wolves and what happened to them. There was no evidence to prove anything. The only thing they had as proof was something they could never tell anyone.
“What good is it for me to be able to speak and never be able to talk to anyone?” questioned Snow. “This good thing has turned out to be a NOT so good thing to me. I’d like to be able to sit down with the family and tell them all about it. I would enjoy talking to other people for once in my life!” Snow continued.
“I know! The thing is I can’t allow you to talk because no other dogs talk and some people might come and get you taking you away to a far away place. I’d never see you again. They might even keep you chained up in a cage and never let you out! If that happened, it would be terrible and I would never forgive myself!” Belladora exclaimed. Her face became so sad and tears filled her pretty blue eyes. Immediately, Snow began to assure Belladora she need not ever worry for he would not use his speaking voice to anyone but her. He would never allow anyone to come between them. His life was dedicated to her totally.
It was a dark winter’s night and the logs in the fireplace were popping and cracking as the red hot coals sent warmth to Belladora’s room. The wind howled outside and pieces of ice pecked onto the glass windows.
Belladora snuggled underneath all the covers on her bed while Snow stretched out across the foot. The crackling sound of the logs burning soon lulled them both to sleep. The storm continued throughout the night. Days passed and snow continued to fall upon an iced earth making walking almost impossible outside. It seemed like forever until the snow stopped falling and the sun came out again.
“Let’s go outside and play in the snow” Belladora said as she looked out the window of her room. “No thanks!” Snow replied enjoying the warmth of the fire. “I think I’ll keep this nice fire going and stay warm. It is freezing cold out there and I don’t have boots to wear like you do” he snickered.
“Oh don’t be such a lazy dog. You have been sleeping for days now. It’s time to go out and take the sled down the hill. It is loads of fun. You can sit on the back and I’ll guide!” Belladora winked.
“Aw! All the fun in the world will not feel as good to me as this log fire. Besides the pads on my feet will get terribly cold” he whined.
“Get up you lazy male! Mom is right. All men are lazy creatures and leave all the work to the women.” she huffed putting on her warm knee socks and fur boots.
“Oh! Well just look at you putting on thick socks and fur boots to keep YOUR feet warm in the snow. Where pray tell is my boots? he questioned still sprawled across the hearth.
“I can fix that easily! I’ll just get some gloves from my drawer and tie them on your feet. Then your feet will stay dry and warm. How’s that?
“Now wouldn’t I look like a handsome dude with my feet all tied up. No thanks! I’ll just go as I am and hope for the best” He said with a losing tone to his voice.
So as it happened Belladora and Snow played all day in the snow. They threw snow at each other and rolled in the snow enjoying the beautiful white blanket God had provided for them. The hills around were perfect for sledding and they took advantage of each and every one. Little did they know, they were straying further and further from home and it was getting late in the day.
Suddenly, Snow yelled out! “Hey! Don’t you think we need to head back home? I’m getting very hungry and my feet are freezing!” Belladora agreed and they began pulling the sled back up one of the hills in the direction they thought was home.
Their feet and legs were becoming so tired in the deep snow. Perhaps this was not the best of all ideas, Belladora thought to herself. She was shivering and her gloves were soaked with water.
“I can’t make it any further, Snow”She gasped. “We will have to find some place to get warm. I don’t think we are even going in the right direction!”
“You sit here on the sled and I’ll scout out the area. Maybe there is a cave or something where we can get out of the cold.”
So with that said, Snow began looking for a place for them to get in out of the cold winter’s wind.
It wasn’t long before he came upon a small wooden cottage. It was nestled in the fur trees and smoke was coming out of the chimney. Quickly he turned around to get Belladora. This would be their shelter for the night.
As the two walked up on the small porch they swept as much of the snow off their shoes as possible. Belladora knocked on the wooden door. She could smell bread cooking inside and her taste buds stood up on her tongue.
The door opened and a small fat lady greeted them inviting them to come inside out of the cold wind.
It was nice and cozy inside and she made each of them something to eat. They sat on the floor in front of the warm fireplace basking in the heat. How happy they were they had found this nice place or was it really a nice place?
Snow made sure he didn’t say a word and huddled against Belladora offering her assurance she need not worry herself about his new gift being a problem.
“My name is Drucilla! I have lived here for most of my life. My sister’s lived with me for a while but they have moved on in search of better things” The chubby lady began.
“I have some freshly baked cinnamon bread and I’m sure it will be tasty with some warm milk! Please get some off the table and eat as much as you can. I’ll get some blankets all warmed and you can sleep her for the night. Tomorrow we will see about getting you to your home. I know your parents are worried out of their mind! I sure would be if I had a little girl out in this storm.” Drucilla jabbered as she pulled some wool blankets off the top of a wardrobe. “They might be a bit dusty but they are warm as can be. I made them myself years back and I’ve stayed warm all this time. It’s hard to find good wool around here anymore. I don’t go into town often because it is such a far distance so I live off the land as much as possible. It is cheaper too!” she continued.
She had no idea she was sitting in the presence of royalty or that the dog was a very special talking dog. They ate all their tummies could hold and drank the sweet warm milk. They did not see Drucilla sprinkle a white powder into the glasses before she gave it to them. They slept the night away not knowing they were in the very house of the famed witch of the south! They were too busy dreaming of the good times they would have when the sun arose the next morning. The wind whistled around the corners of the little wooden cabin. The fur trees bowed low as their heavy limbs brushed against the walls. All was quite inside but for the snoring of Drucilla and the occasional creaking sound of her rocking chair as she moved about in her sleep.
The smell of fresh baked bread brought Belladora to her senses. She rolled over and opened her eyes. There was something wrong for she could not move her hands. Looking down she discovered her hands and legs were tied together with twine. Fear gripped her as she looked over at Snow. His front paws and his back paws were all tied like hers.
“Hey! Why do you have us all tied up?” Belladora questioned, her voice breaking from the sudden fear.
“Oh my I guess you now can see I’m not as sweet as wild cherries. I have been sought far and wide for many years. I figured my sisters gave my hiding place away telling everyone around. So to be safe, I’ll keep you hear with me until I figure out what I am going to do. I can’t have people knowing where I am. Witches around here are caught and burned at the stake.” she cackled thinking she would out wit anyone who tried to catch her.
“NOT A WITCH!” Snow yelled to the top of his voice! His eyes opened as wide as could be and he displayed his long white fangs.
Anger filled him quickly and the bristles on his coat stood erect.
“Be quiet Snow!” Belladora whispered. “We can’t let her know you can talk. Just be quiet until we can come up with a plan to get out of here!” She scolded.
Snow quickly muffled his voice acting as if Belladora was the one who had spoken. No one would harm his precious Belladora. As Belladora carried on a conversation with Drucilla telling her all about her famous father and the guards around the castle, Snow began to chew the twine into. His teeth were razor sharp and it didn’t take long for him to free himself.
“My father will have all the guard looking everywhere for us”, she continued. “They have guns and they will shoot you or worse. This land belongs to my father and all the land around here. I’m sure he knows where this cabin is and it won’t be long before the search people will be here. You had best get your things together and escape while you can.” Belladora explained, knowing that indeed her father would have everyone looking for her.
Suddenly Snow leaped from his resting place and attacked Drucilla knocking her to the floor. “I’ll show you who is the most powerful!” He howled. “I will sink my razor sharp teeth into your neck and we will have you for dinner you ole wicked woman” he said convincingly.
The witch gasped at the sight of the razor sharp teeth against her throat and passed out on the floor. The shock was too great for her. She had never seen a dog talk and she knew his teeth would be her death. Quickly he untied Belladora and they bound the witch hands and feet just as she had done to them.
Hastily they inspected the house finding her stolen gold and her freshly made broom standing in the corner by the door.
They then sat down to wait for Drucilla to wake up.
It only took a few minutes until they heard a moaning sound coming from Drucilla. She fumbled around and finally was able to sit upright. “Let me make a deal with you!” she said hoping to get herself out of the jam she was presently in. “If you will turn me lose, I will get on my broom and fly far away. You will never see or hear from me again!” She smiled innocently.
“No!” Snow snapped. “You must die and all other wicked witches who come around here will die too!” His sharp fangs glistened in the sunlight. He was not playing and Drucilla knew her life was hanging by a thread.
“Ok! Just untie my hands and help me to stand. I will leave and never come back. I promise” she cried.
“Just let me rip off one of her arms” Snow asked looking over at Belladora. “She can’t fly too well with no arms and I just as soon we burn her to death right here and now!” He was not in the mood to play with this evil being. No one had any reason to go around hurting innocent people. Why couldn’t she live like all good people and not be so evil? He thought, his sharp teeth breaking the skin on Drucilla’s arm.
“Oh please don’t!” Drucilla screamed. “You’ve bitten me and now I am bleeding all over my new dress!”
“Well who cares about your dress?” Snow said in a nonchalant way.” Now all the wolves around here will smell your evil blood. They will rip you to shreds. Then your pretty dress will be soaked in your blood. “Have you ever seen what a wolf can do to a person?” He continued getting ever closer to her face. “They rip out your throat first and pull your head off. Then they tear open your chest and eat your heart. They take your liver to their pups and they will have your body parts spread over a country mile!” Snow laughed, knowing the witch was about to wet her pants. She was trembling and Snow was quite pleased she tasted some of her own wickness.
“You are an evil woman and I don’t like you at all” Belladora replied. “I will do this because I am a good person and I don’t want to harm anyone. If you ever come back I will let Snow eat you for dinner!” She promised, getting a knife from the kitchen to cut the twine.
“Now get on your broom and get out of here before my father’s guards get here. You cannot take anything with you. All of your gold and silver will be given to the poor!”
With this being said Drucilla took hold of her broomstick and flew away. They watched her until they could no longer see her. At last they were free, their secret was safe, and the witch was gone.
Seeing she was no longer a threat they made themselves a meal and prepared to make their way home.
“What an adventure this has been” Sighed Belladora. “We are alive and our secret is safe. We can go home and tell my father about the witch. He’ll be sure she never comes this way again.”
Belladora kept her promise and told her father. Of course he had extra men posted around his estate. They would be safe now and Drucilla was far away. All ended well! The witch was not burned, Belladora was safe, her father took better precautions over his land and Snow’s ability to speak would forever be a secret.
Or would it; for who can trust the word of a wicked witch? Would you?
Written by Sybil Shearin
All Rights Reserved.
Question for children. “What was Belladora’s dogs name?