The Teddy Bear

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Turmeric is sitting outside the palace kitchen (on some cushions) and reading a book. It is a collection of funny stories by a German author. He is reading the third story in the book which is titled The Teddy Bear; Turmeric found the book in Noir’s room.

The Teddy Bear

Once upon a time there was a woman called Alice who had a special talent: she could knit teddy bears which could talk. Alice had her own shop in Paris, France, where she would sell these teddy bears she had made herself. One day, a handsome man called Christopher walks into her shop and buys a teddy bear; he tells her that he is a cook and that the teddy bear is a present for a woman called Lydia who he is about to marry in Florence, Italy.

After buying the teddy bear, Christopher leaves the shop and heads for Florence; on the way, he begins to talk to the teddy bear about Lydia. Upon hearing what Lydia is like, the teddy bear tells Christopher that she sounds like a dumb woman; it then shares with him what Alice is like. After hearing about Alice, Christopher begins to fall in love with her and he tells the teddy bear this. Christopher also tells the teddy bear that he didn’t love Lydia at all but he had to propose to her because he had always wanted to get married and have children of his own. The teddy bear then tells Christopher that he should marry Alice instead; he tells it that that is just what he is going to do as soon as he breaks off his engagement with Lydia.

When Christopher reaches Florence, he tells Lydia that he cannot marry her; the bear, meanwhile, tells Lydia about Alice and that he is going to marry her instead. When Lydia hears this, she screams that she must marry Christopher but he plus the teddy bear run away from her and to France. In Paris, Christopher proposes to Alice and the two live happily ever after.

Turmeric (thinks to himself): What a nice story! I can’t even imagine that Christopher had almost gotten married to Lydia; that would have been such a stupid story. He belongs with no other woman but with Alice for forever!

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The Market

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A carriage stops in front of a market. The market is comprised of three crooked lines of grocers and two straight lines of shopkeepers selling clothes, jewelries, bags, shoes and toys. Ink opens the door of her carriage and jumps down; she straightens up her apricot-colored dress and tells the carriage driver that it will not take her long to finish shopping for food and that he should wait for her at the spot where the carriage has stopped until she gets back. Ink then walks into the market and finds that there aren’t many shoppers around; a couple of the shopkeepers smile at her when she walks past them.

Ink (thinks to herself): Let me see…what should I get for myself? I know! I will buy some water crackers, croissants, sausages and cheese. That should be enough for me to eat for a couple of days.

Twenty minutes later…

The carriage driver holds the door of the carriage open for Ink and takes her shopping bags from her hands. She picks up her dress, gets back onto the carriage, takes back the shopping bags from the carriage driver and closes the door firmly behind her. Soon, the carriage begins to move once again.

Ink (thinks to herself): Should I wear a sweater? It was so breezy outside but I don’t feel too cold inside the carriage; it’s actually quite warm. I do not think I need to. Maybe when it gets dark outside I will need to wear a sweater; I wonder if this half-sleeved dress I am wearing will keep me warm then…I better eat my croissants.

The Witch of Willow Hall

The Witch of Willow Hall fictitiously follows up after the Salem witch trials which had occurred in the 17th Century in Massachusetts. The protagonist in the novel is an eighteen-year old woman called Lydia Montrose who lives in Willow Hall (in Massachusetts) with her two sisters: Catherine and Emeline; Lydia is a descendant of witches and she is still alive long after the Salem witch trials.

Many years ago, Montrose had involuntarily used a power she possessed to torture a ruffian on the street. Later, Lydia has to migrate from Boston to New Oldbury because of Catherine – she is a woman with an indecent character. Montrose also develops feelings for a man called John Barrett and discovers that Willow Hall is a haunted manor.

The tale is interesting because it blends romance with the paranormal in the 19th Century. As a result, the story has the power to both scare and interest you, even when the character Catherine sours the plot a little bit because Catherine, in my outlook, is a selfish woman: Lydia is actually compelled to change locations for something that Catherine has done and this even makes Montrose sight ghosts which is a frightening situation to fall into for somebody else.

The Cooking Begins

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Noir has made more than fifty photocopies of each recipe which four dozen kitchen boys will be following to cook for the feast. The Chef, meanwhile, has planned that all the kitchen boys will separate into groups of eight and form six groups and each group will prepare one dish. Chef, Noir, Prince Eric and the kitchen boys begin cooking right after breakfast. At 6 o’clock in the evening, all of them stop cooking and refrigerate the food in big bowls.

In the palace garden…

Cow (sat on a pile of purple cushions): So, Noir when do you think it would be best to throw the feast? I want to hold it someday soon in the afternoon.
Noir (sat on a single red cushion): I think you can throw it a week from today! All the cooking should be complete by then!
Cow: A week…that sounds good!
Noir: So, will we serve the poor food here in the garden?
Cow: No! We will serve them outside the palace! I will ask the kitchen boys to do it.
Noir: Perfect! Will you come out from your palace and tell them what the feast is for?
Cow: I will leave that task up to you…back-to-back episodes of my favorite soap, ‘Cray’s Family’ currently plays on television during the afternoon and I don’t want to miss watching it!

The Carriage

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A carriage driver is waiting to pick Ink up from her home in Sheffield and take her to her boarding school in Cambridge. He is driving a horse-drawn carriage which, along with the horse, belongs to Grandfather Williams and Mother Williams. The carriage driver is employed by the two. The Williams use the carriage whenever they need to travel some place far.

Mother Williams: Ink, did you take with you all that you needed to take to boarding school? Write to me soon!
Ink: Yes, I took everything I needed! I…
Grandfather Williams (interrupts): Did you take with you enough to eat during the journey?
Ink: Yes! I already have some water crackers with me and I will ask the carriage driver to take me to markets on the way to Cambridge so that I can get more food for myself!
Grandfather Williams: Do buy enough food for yourself when you are at the markets!

Ink says goodbye to her family, climbs into the carriage and shuts the door behind her. Soon, the carriage starts to move. For a few minutes, Ink just sits quietly inside the carriage and looks outside from her window. But she gets bored of doing this quite fast and so begins to read a book instead.

One hour later…

Ink opens the door of the carriage slightly, pops her head out, and yells for the carriage driver.

The Carriage Driver: Yes, miss!
Ink: Do you know how long it will take to get to Cambridge?
The Carriage Driver: Uh, it will take very long! Do you need to get food?
Ink: No! But when it’s noon, you must stop at a market on the way so that I can!

Recipes for the Feast

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Noir is inside the palace kitchen with Chef (he is the head cook in the palace). She is simultaneously discussing with him the recipes of the dishes which will be cooked to serve to the poor and jotting them down on a writing pad. When they have finished working on the recipes, all the kitchen boys that Cow keeps in the palace who help Chef out with all cooking-related work, like grocery shopping, will simply follow the recipes and make the food; Noir, Chef and Prince Eric will be helping them with that big task as well.

Noir: Do you think we need to make the cod salty or sour?
Chef: I think salty is a good idea.
Noir: Should the fish dish have broth?
Chef: Yes and the broth should contain some green-colored items!
Noir: What green-colored items?
Chef: Bok choy and um, how…
Noir (interrupts): Parsley?
Chef: Yes, that sounds lovely!
Noir (puts her pen down on the pad): So, the recipes are all complete now! We will just have to start cooking!
Chef: Yes! Well, I’ll be getting back to completing my many daily duties inside the kitchen but I cannot wait to also help with cooking for four thousand people later!

The Jewelry Shop

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It is eleven o’clock in the morning. Noir is sitting on her bed and brushing her hair with a pink-colored comb. Suddenly, Turmeric pops out of his lamp.

Turmeric: Noir, I have been thinking!
Noir: What have you been thinking?
Turmeric: I want to have my very own shop in Cairo.
Noir: What would you sell?
Turmeric: I would sell jewelry for women.
Noir: Really? Would that be jewelry you made yourself?
Turmeric: No! I have no idea how to make any jewelry! What I want to do is at first convince a few jewelers from bazaars in the city to let me stock some of their pieces in my shop. Then what I will do is charge a jewelry piece twice its actual price; it will earn me a good profit.
Noir: But if everything you stock in your shop will be so overpriced, why would women buy anything?
Turmeric: Because I am a really handsome genie! I just know women would never be able to control themselves from buying jewelry from me when I am so dashing!