The Canary Prince
There was once a queen who had a son whom she loved very much. When his father died, Queen Jennifer remarried, hoping to give him a new father. But the queen's consort, Craig, was extremely jealous of the love that she had for her son. To that end, he began to tell lies and make up stories about the young prince, so that finally, Queen Jennifer agreed to send Justin away, but only as long as he was well cared for.
Craig wasted no time, and immediately had Prince Justin packed and sent to a castle deep within the forest, with plenty of servants to wait and stand guard over him. Justin was given a pleasant room high in a tower, with lots of windows so that he could draw and paint to his hearts content. He was also given all that he liked to eat and drink, but he was never allowed outside.
Queen Jennifer missed her son and would often ask her husband about him. To convince the queen that he truly cared and took an interest in the boy, he would go and visit. The servants would all run out to greet him and would assure him that Prince Justin was well. To see for himself, he would climb the stairs to the tower and ask a few questions, but would never really listen to any thing that Justin had to say. As he would talk, Craig would walk around the room, making the odd comments, and would dig through the pictures and painting that he would find around the room, taking without asking those that he thought would please the queen and prove that he had been there and that her son was happy.
Of course nothing could have been farther from the truth. Prince Justin was extremely lonely. The servants never spoke to him, and no matter how hard he tried, he was never allowed out of the castle. He took to sitting all day at his windows, sadly looking over the forest when he wasn't drawing, wishing and wondering if he would ever be able to leave the castle and if he'd ever be able to get rid of his loneliness, if he'd ever find someone to love.
One day, several months later, the son of a neighboring king was out hunting and took a little used trail that passed the castle in the woods. The castle had been empty for as long as he could remember, and so he was amazed to see a beautiful young man looking out of one of the tower windows.
Prince Justin was startled to say the least, to be staring out the window and for the first time in months see something other then trees. He was amazed to see the handsome man below. There they stood, looking at each other for the longest time.
The next day, the prince came back. He bowed as he approached and Justin returned the bow with a smile. Again they spent the day just staring at each other, falling more and more in love with each other. The prince, who's name was Brian, had seen the guards around the castle and knew that there was no way for him to go to the young man in the tower, and so he was content to just stare at him until he could think of some way to get to him.
This went on for a long time until one day a good witch with bright red hair, named Debbie, happened to pass by and saw them watching each other. She couldn't help but laugh. "I have never seen two people content just to stare at each other. Why don't you go to him?"
Prince Brian smiled. "You are right and I have been thinking long and hard on how to do that but to no avail. He can not leave his room and I don't have wings in which to fly up to him."
Debbie smiled kindly and patted his hand. "Ah, then, leave it to me."
Suddenly, a worn and dusty book appeared on the table in Justin's room.
"I don't remember that being there." Justin said to himself. He opened the mysterious book and read these words:
Turn the pages forward and the man will come to thee.
Turn the pages back and a man again you see.
Justin looked at the book confused. He read the phrase again and looked through the book only to find there was nothing else there. Walking toward the window, he began flipping the pages forward. As he did, the prince's cape billowed; his arms rose and came down with a rustling sound of feathers as he changed into a small canary that flew straight up to the tower window, landing on the sill.
Justin took the beautiful bird upon his finger and tenderly stroked its head. Then, remembering that the bird was really a man, he blushed and quickly turned the pages of the book back. The canary's wings became arms, its claws became feet, and there in the room stood the prince.
Brian walked up to Justin, took the book from his hands and sat it down. Slowly so not to frighten him, he placed his hands on either side of his face, bent down and placed a gentle kiss upon his lips. "I have wanted to do that since the moment I saw you."
Justin sighed as he felt a rush of warmth fill him and loneliness leave his soul. "Me too. My my name is Justin."
Brian kissed Justin tenderly again. "Justin, I like that. My name is Brian."
Justin smiled truly happy for the first time in a long time. "Brian. Brian, will you kiss me again?"
Brian smiled happily down into Justin's face. "Yes Justin. I'll kiss you again, and again, and again."
Brian proceeded to kiss Justin just as he said he would, and as they kissed, they moved to the cushions piled on the floor. Slowly at first their passions built and they began to explore each other's bodies. Removing their clothes a bit at a time until they were totally naked, they admired each other, both not believing that they were together, that it was real.
Brian stopped and looked down at Justin. "I have never felt this way for anyone. You stole my heart the moment our eyes met. I want to make love to you."
Justin eyes filled with tears but he smiled as he laid his hand against Brian's face. "I have loved you from that moment too. Please love me."
Brian leaned down for a gentle kiss. "It will hurt a little but it will get better. Do you trust me?"
Justin nodded. "Yes, I trust you."
Brian looked around and got up and went into the alcove where Justin's tub was located at. Justin watched him, confused as to why he had been left. Brian returned shortly, holding a small vial of scented oil. Upon seeing Justin's confusion, Brian said. "It will help ease the way so that I will not hurt you as much as I would without it."
Justin nodded his understanding. Brian laid down once again and began to caress Justin, easing the tension that had once more eased into his body. When he felt that Justin was ready he began to prepare him. Justin tensed slightly when Brian slid a lubed finger across his hole and back, stopping at the entrance Brian stared deeply into Justin's eyes, letting him see the love there and whispered as he bent down to kiss him. "Relax."
Slowly Brian worked his finger in, knowing how scared and nervous Justin was. Once he was in, he began to move it back and forth, slowly before he added a second one when Justin began to squirm from the fires that were building inside him.
When Brian felt that Justin was ready, he withdrew his fingers drawing a cry of loss from Justin. Brian smiled as he lifted Justin's legs up to his shoulders. "Don't worry, you will be filled soon."
Brian poured more oil into his hands and coated not only his own cock but Justin's as well. When Brian wrapped his hand around Justin's, he cried out and arched into his hand. Releasing Justin's cock, he quickly placed the head of his own at the prepared opening and catching Justin's eyes once again slowly began to push into him.
Justin cried out at the sudden pain that filled him but he heard Brian telling him to relax, that the pain would soon be replaced by pleasure, and soon it was as Justin relaxed, Brian began to move again.
Brian tried to keep everything at a slow and gentle pace, and for awhile it worked as they moved against each other. Before long however, their need for each other got the better of them, and as their release neared, they began to move faster and harder until they came within seconds of each other.
Laying there panting, wrapped in each other's arms, they talked about their dreams, their lives, and about their situation. They made love several times during the day as they got to know and fall more in love with each other. As the sky began to grow dark, Justin knew that Brian had to go before it became to dark. With a final kiss goodbye, Justin turned the pages of the book and watched as Brian turned once more into a canary, which flew out the window and slowly down to the forest floor. Turning the pages back, he watched as he became a man, who with a wave disappeared into the woods.
For over a month, these daily visits became the best of both men's lives. They both admitted that they had never been happier and what would make them more so was if Justin could be removed from the castle. Each time Brian would have to leave, they would declare their love for each other and vowed that they would one day never have to part.
One day at the Queen's insistence, the consort Craig, came to see his stepson. Again he climbed the tower stairs and examined the room. He had noticed that Justin seemed to be anxious for him to leave but also that he seemed happier then the last time he had been there. Just then, he happened to glance out the window just in time to see a handsome young man come along the trail toward the castle.
"Well, what do we have here?" He murmured to himself.
Moving closer to the window, he saw the old vine growing on the outside wall up to the window which confirmed his suspicions. Overcome with the hate for Justin, he decided to take care of the young man. Quickly, he sent Justin to fetch him some wine from the kitchen. While he was gone, he snatched up the cushion on the windowsill and taking some of the small long nails that Justin had been using to hang his drawings, pushed them into it so that the sharp points were pointing up.
"There," he said with a wicked smile. "If he dares to climb up here, he'll get a special welcome for his trouble."
When Justin returned, Craig drank his wine quickly, grabbed some of Justin's drawings, and abruptly bid him farewell and left.
Justin sighed in relief when Craig left and rushed to the window to see Brian who he knew would be waiting outside. He didn't notice the tacks so carefully hidden within the cushion. Taking the book, Justin anxiously turned the pages forward. The canary, as it had every day, flew up to the sill and came to rest on the cushion. The nails pierced its breast like they were spears. Blood began to stain its pale feathers, and yet the bird managed to rise feebly into the air and glide downward to the ground.
Terrified, Justin frantically turned the pages of the book hoping that the wounds would be gone when Brian changed back into a man. However, this was not to be. Prince Brian lay upon the ground, his garments soaked red, surrounded by his dogs, whose barking soon brought other hunters. They picked him up and carried him off to his father's palace, more dead then alive.
The king could not cure his son, even with all the doctors and medicines his wealth could buy. Each day, Brian grew worse. Word soon spread that the king would give anything to whomever could help his son. Many tried but it seemed that nothing would heal Brian's wounds.
By this time, Justin was desperate to know what had happened to Brian. That night, he once again tried to climb down the vine outside his window. However, the vines broke and he almost fell. Listening, he waited until the castle grew quiet and removing his boots, began to pad barefoot through the halls of the castle looking for a way out. Finally, he slipped into a dark and unused room. Exploring it, he found it to be an unused bedroom. Rushing to the window, he worked at getting the stuck window open and looked down. It was still quite a drop so he took the sheets of the bed and tied them together. Using these as a rope, he climbed out the window and slid to the ground.
Justin ran and walked and ran again until he was far into the forest and exhausted. Leaning against a tree deep in the forest, he closed his eyes, wishing for sleep, but knowing that his worries and fear wouldn't allow it.
At midnight, he heard four loud whistles, one right after the other. Coming from four different directs, four witches suddenly appeared out of the dark. Justin trembled with fear and hid himself the best that he could as the witches lit a fire. As they sat warming themselves, they talked about all the news that they had heard. Long into the night they talked and Justin had just about fallen asleep when he was startled awake by the latest story.
" There's a young prince nearby who is dying because no one knows how to cure him." said one of the crones with a laugh. "I alone know the secret to help him. For there in his own room, under a tile in front of the fireplace, is a vial filled with an ointment that, if spread upon his wounds, would soon cure him."
Justin almost gave himself away as his covered his mouth to keep his joyful cry from escaping. As it neared dawn, the witches took to the road once more. As soon as they were gone, Justin jumped up and set out for the town.
Once in town, Justin traded his fine silk and velvet clothes for the tattered clothes of a poor shepherd. Disguised, he went to the palace gate and begged the guards to let him try to help the prince. The guards tried to send him away but the king overheard and said, "Many have attempted to help my son but to no good. What harm can one more try bring?"
Once in the room, Justin demanded that he be left alone. Finally his request was granted. Seeing Brian so gravely ill brought tears to his eyes but fighting them, he began to do what was needed. First he went and searched the fireplace tiles until he found the one that was loose. Finding the vial, he spread the ointment on Brian's wounds. As he touched each wound, he was amazed to see each one healed.
Filled with joy, he called the king, who was amazed to see his son's wounds completely gone and color beginning to return to his face. At once he offered the poor shepherd a fortune in gold but he refused. He would accept only three things: the family coat of arms, a standard, and the bloodstained shirt Prince Brian had been wearing when he was hurt. Once he was given those items, he left, never leaving his name.
Within a couple of weeks, Prince Brian was once again out hunting. Passing Justin's window, he didn't once glance up at it. He was convinced that it was Justin who had wounded him and he no longer felt the same love for him.
Justin felt his heart breaking and let him pass. This happened again and again until Justin couldn't bear his down turned head. Grabbing the book, he quickly turned Brian into the canary who had no choice but to fly up to Justin.
After Justin turned him back into a man, he tried desperately to explain that the cause of his wounds was his stepfather's spiteful work and that it had been he who had cured him.
Brian didn't believe him. "It was a poor shepherd boy who saved me. He didn't take any gold for payment, but three worthless things."
Justin moved to a trunk in the room. "Do you mean these?"
Quickly he pulled out the crest and bloodstained shirt and from his closet the flag. Brian couldn't believe what he was seeing. Staring at the three items, he shook his head and as the truth sank in, he sank to his knees, his eyes filling with tears as he begged for Justin's forgiveness.
Justin took Brian's hands and said. "It doesn't matter. I still love you and will always love you no matter what."
Brian stood and drew Justin into his arms where he began to kiss them both breathless. "Justin, I love you and I want to marry you. Please say you'll marry me?"
Justin couldn't believe the happiness that filled his soul. Smiling up at Brian with tears in his eyes, he said. "Yes."
Brian smiled back and kissed him again. "Be ready to leave here tomorrow. For now, I must go tell my father and gather some men to bring back with me. You are leaving this castle and I don't care if I have to use an army to do it."
Justin laughed happily. "I will be ready."
Flipping the pages forward, Justin turned Brian once more into a canary. Once he was back on the ground, he flipped them back again. With a happy wave, he watched Brian leave for the last time and excitedly looked around to see what he wanted to take with him.
That very day, Brian told his father of his decision to marry. The king was ecstatic until he found out that Brian was going to be marrying the young shepherd boy.
"Think well my son. You are expected to marry royalty, not some peasant." The king tried to reason.
Brian insisted however. "I will marry the one who has won my heart."
The wedding day arrived and all the kings, queens, and consorts from near and far were invited. Among them were Justin's mother and stepfather, who knew nothing about Justin's betrothal, for he had told no one. When he approached the alter, Queen Jennifer cried out. "My son!"
Justin embraced her and told her all about the mistreatment he had received at the hands of her abusive husband. Queen Jennifer immediately had Craig seized and taken away to her dungeons.
The wedding proceeded with great joy and laughter and when they kissed, everyone could see the love they had for each other. The happy young couple spent the rest of their lives together.
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