Welcome Home Samantha

Arche Sechsbaum
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    Once upon a time, there lived a girl called Samantha, the only daughter of a rich family. Samantha was a beautiful young lady.
  • Her charmingness was often referred to as a tulip in full bloom. And hooked around her neck was a glamorous pendant that she had received from her beloved but long dead father, as a present on her 20th birthday.
  • Samantha was to turn 29 this year. Despite that all her friends were already married, Samantha neither had a boyfriend nor someone she loved. This concerned her mother terribly, but Samantha herself was not at all in haste of getting married.
  • Rather, she found all the men around her disappointingly uncourageous and not worth depending on. She dreamed for a man who was mighty and bold enough to take her away where nobody except the two of them would know.
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    One day, the doorbell rang and Samantha went up to the door to see who it was. However, just as she placed her hand on the door knob, it suddenly swang open and the next moment, to her fright, a long tongue was wrapped around her body. The long tongue of the toad Neeton.
  • Samantha and Neeton had known each other from when they were little. However, Samantha had not seen him around for very long. She screeched “Let go of me!!”
  • Although Sam tried as hard as she could to free herself from the gruesome grasp of the toad, Neeton refused to let go and with her wrapped up in his tongue, he leaped into the woods.
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    After a while, Neeton reached an open space in the woods.
    “Would you just let go of me for god’s sake!!” screamed Samantha. But instead of letting her go, Neeton demanded, “Then marry me!”
  • Having heard this, her anger reached its peak.
    “Why would I marry someone like you? You’re not at all my type. I will only marry a rich and bold, noble man!”
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    How long had it been since having suddenly been kidnapped? With Neeton’s tongue still wrapped tightly around her, Samantha felt exhausted and without knowing, drifted into a deep sleep along with Neeton.
  • As the two slept on the damp ground of the woods, the mole, Lord Glaw passed by and caught sight of Samantha. “Why, what are you doing here my dear? Are you alright?” asked Lord Glaw worriedly seeing how Samantha was looking like she was under restraint.
  • “Oh, noble Lord Glaw. I beg you to help me free myself from this trap!” she sobbed. Pitying her, Lord Glaw immediately agreed to lend her his hand and with his stick tried to wake Neeton who was sound asleep.
  • However, no matter how hard he prodded the toad with his stick, Neeton showed no sign of awakening.
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    Having no other choice, Lord Glaw swang down his stick as hardly as he could on Neeton’s tongue and split it into two, freeing Samantha at last. “Awwwwwwwwww!!” screamed the toad in pain.
  • However, despite Neeton’s anguish, Lord Glaw took no notice and smiled at Samantha. “Now that’s better isn’t it my dear. Well, you must be feeling cold after all this nuisance. Come with me to my place. I’ll prepare you something nice and warm.”
  • Leaving the poor toad rolling around on the ground in pain, the two of them rode off on the Lord’s fashionable black coach.
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    Samantha spent a few days at the magnificent mansion of Lord Glaw. She was welcomed in with the greatest hospitality. Every served meal from breakfast to dinner was scrumptious.
  • She was given a huge chamber all to herself and was also gifted with the most elegant dress she had ever come across. Lord Glaw was always gentleman like and treated Samantha well. She really did enjoy life at the Lord’s place.
  • However, for Samantha, Lord Glaw himself was no better than any old dirty mole and she certainly did not see him as the man suitable to become her husband.
  • Therefore, although one morning, the Lord knelt down before her and asked for her hand, she shook her head and said, “I’m sorry but I prefer to marry someone of my own age.”
  • The Lord could not hide his shock but not able to bear the thought of losing Samantha more, he pleaded for her to stay living with him until she met the man, whom she would agree to marry with.
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    That night, Samantha tiptoed down the stairs that led to the basement. She was in search of a way out just in case she needed to escape from Lord Glaw. Just as she reached the basement, she spotted a swallow who was injured badly, placed on an old shabby bed.
  • The swallow was called Swatty and had been caught by one of the Lord’s servants. Samantha went up to the suffering swallow and asked, “Why are you being so badly treated?”
  • The swallow sighed sadly, “Unfortunately, they’re waiting for me to die. The Lord is expecting to see swallow pie on his plate for dinner.”
  • Samantha was utterly shocked by the brutality occurring down in this miserable dark basement. She felt the urge to do something about it. So from that night on, everyday, while no one was looking, she would sneak down to the basement and look after the injured swallow.
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    One morning, as Samantha woke up, she found a magnificent wedding dress at her bedside. It seemed like the mole was on the move to forcing her into a marriage. She was horrified and knew that it was time for her to escape.
  • Just then, a swallow swiftly came flying in from the open window of her chamber. It was Swatty, the swallow she had long continued to take care of. “Samantha, all thanks to your dedication, I have fully recovered from my injury. Let me make up for it by granting you a wish!”
  • Samantha thought for her a second and then whispered to Swatty. “I want to marry a young, rich and handsome man. I want to have a prince of my own!!” Swatty beamed at her and gleefully opened up its wings. “A prince, shall it be!!”
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    Samantha climbed onto the swallow and leaving behind her luxurious life with the gentleman like Lord Glaw, and of course the beautiful wedding dress, she took off into the bright blue sky, with great expectations on the successful life beyond her.
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    After flying for almost a day long, the two eventually captured a glimpse of a palace below them, ten times the size of the mole’s mansion.
  • Swatty flew all the way down to a balcony at the centre of the palace and placed Samantha there just as a handsome prince, a perfect prince that Samantha had always dreamed for, came out from inside the palace and greeted them.
  • “Welcome back my dear friend. It has been a while. But first, may I ask who this fair lady could be?” Swatty bowed and introduced Sam to him, while she stood there blushing. Seeing how gallantly, boldly and confidently the prince spoke and behaved, she immediately fell in love with him.
  • The three had a glorious dinner together and as they sat to rest in what seemed like the central living room of the palace, Samantha looked straight at the prince and confessed, “Your Majesty, would you make me your princess?”
  • The prince was surprised at the unexpected suddenness of her confession but soon smiled and took Sam’s hand and gently kissed it.
  • He looked into the eyes of Samantha and said, “It would be my greatest honor to have you by my side for the rest of this life.” Samantha’s pendant shimmered beautifully as the two embraced happily.
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    The wedding ceremony was held grandly and Samantha officially became the princess of the prince’s country.
  • However, as the luxurious life as a princess started, Samantha grew more and more arrogant. She spent a lot on buying dresses, shoes, jewels, and ordered around the servants even for the smallest things.
  • She saw less and less of the swallow who she owed a lot to. Even the prince, who loved Samantha very strongly, was often annoyed by her self-centeredness.
  • And finally one night, the prince said firmly, “Samantha, I ask for a divorce. You have lost the kindness to care for others and have become too selfish. Beauty itself can make you neither a good queen nor a good wife. You have lost your charm and together with it, the light of that pendant.”
  • Although Samantha pleaded for forgiveness, the prince’s decision was solid and in a few days, she had no choice but to leave the palace.
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    Although she first planned to return to where she had lived before, she did not have enough money to get there. Therefore, Samantha decided to start working as a waitress at a restaurant in a small village she had come across on the way.
  • Work was hard, especially for a girl who had never really done any work for herself. She, having born into a rich family, had for all her life, had everything done by her maids. However, she worked very hard and did whatever the restaurant owner would say.
  • She had learnt a good lesson at the palace. Samantha soon became popular among the regular customers, of course for her beauty but also for her passionate devotion to work. It was not rare for the village men to ask her out, but Samantha would always shake her head with a gentle smile.
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    Once Samantha had enough money to set off again on her trip back home, she thanked the restaurant owner and left the village. She walked for days and just about when she had used up the money she had gained at the restaurant, she finally reached home.
  • As her mother, who had been watering the flowers in the front garden, spotted Samantha, she cried out with joy. She came running up to her daughter who she had thought long dead, and hugged her hard as if to ascertain herself that it was not a dream.
  • Samantha sobbed in her mother’s arms. “Forgive me mother, for having disappeared and make you worry for so long!!” Her mother shook her head and looked into her daughter’s face which she had waited to see for 2 whole years.
  • Although it was worn out by the long journey, she saw how hugely she had changed. From her eyes, she could no longer see the ignorant innocence of a child, but the confident gleam of a well grown lady.
  • Her pendant was lost but it seemed to her mother that the same charm and beauty radiated out from Samantha herself.