The Snow Queen

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Once upon a time there lived a wicked goblin who built a magic mirror. Anything that was beautiful or good was reflected in it as ugly and bad. One day, the mirror broke and all its pieces fell all over the earth. A few pieces also fell in a small town where two friends named Kay and Gerda lived.

Kay and Gerda were neighbours. They were very good friends and spent their days playing games, building sand blocks and running across the sun-kissed fields.

One day while they were playing, bits of the broken mirror hit Kay’s eyes and one piece pierced his heart. After that everything changed. Kay no longer viewed Gerda as his best friend. He poked fun at her and hit her on the head whenever he could. Gerda was puzzled and couldn’t understand why he was behaving in such a strange way.

One day, Kay and his group of friends decided to go on a sledge ride over the snow. Suddenly, a huge sledge drew up before him and its driver asked him to step in. Once Kay was inside, the driver transformed himself into a woman and sped away. She was draped in a white flowing gown and on her head was placed a crown made of ice. Her silky white locks cascaded like a flowing stream. Astonished Kay asked her who she was. I am the Snow Queen,” replied the woman, whose face shone like a sparkling diamond. She tugged at the reins and rode past the clouds and the rainbow, till they reached a distant land.

Meanwhile, Gerda waited for Kay to return. One day, she took her boat and went to search for him in the river. Seeing Gerda, a fairy cast her magic spell and made the boat approach her. When Gerda narrated her story, she sent her garden flow­ers everywhere to search for Kay, but they returned empty-handed.

Gerda sat under a tree and wept all night. Suddenly a crow flew down and informed her about a certain princess who had recently married a boy. Gerda grew restless thinking that Kay had married someone else and urged the crow to take her to the princess’s palace. Gerda waited anxiously inside the palace and when the boy entered she sighed with relief because it wasn’t Kay.

Gerda carried on her search and came to a forest where she met a robber girl and her reindeer. Hearing Gerda’s sad tale, the reindeer said he had seen the Snow Queen flying away with a boy to Lapland. She immediately set out for Lapland and the reindeer accompanied her. There, they came across a magician who told them that Kay was at the Snow Queen’s palace and owing to the piece of glass inside him, he considered it to be the best place in the world. She suggested Gerda visit the palace.

The Snow Queen’s palace was made out of ice. It was cold and dark, and no one except the Snow Queen lived in it. One day, she challenged Kay to spell the word “Eternity” from an assorted chunk of alphabets, all made of ice, and promised him his freedom in return.

Kay wracked his brains hard but just couldn’t spell the word. Just then Gerda arrived and seeing her long-lost friend she cried out in joy and embraced him. Just as her warm tears fell on his hard cheeks Kay felt his cold heart begin melting. He recognized Gerda and wept aloud. Suddenly, a teardrop fell on the alphabets and they spelt out the word “Eternity.”

Kay was set free and he went back home with Gerda.

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