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EXT. CASTLE - NIGHT
Just as Xena and Gabrielle are approaching the castle, lightning splits the darkened sky, thunder rolls, and rain pours down by the bucketful. Looking none too pleased with the situation, Xena steps up to the large door and knocks upon it.
After a moment, the door is opened by an elderly, bearded, and rather rotund man wearing a fur cloak and a golden crown; he is obviously the King.
Sorry. We gave at the office.
He begins to close the door, only to have his motion stopped by a strong hand that grasps the doorís edge and pushes.
Look. Iím cold, Iím wet, and Iím
very tired of games. So either you
let me in, or I take this castle of yours
down stone by stone. Got me?
I donít know who you
think you are but....
He looks behind him
INT. CASTLE - NIGHT
A pleasingly plump, gray-haired woman, dressed in a fur robe and crown looks at her husband, the King.
Donít turn them away, dear.
One of them could be the princess
weíve been waiting for!
The king looks over his shoulder at the two bedraggled and bristling figures standing outside, then looks back at his wife.
They certainly donít look
like princesses to me.
You never know. They might
look much different when dry
and warm. Besides, remember
what the oracle said. That a
princess would come calling
in the midst of a bad storm.
Didnít say anything
about two princesses.
Well obviously, one of
them is the handmaiden.
But which is which?
Does it really matter? Whoever
passes the test is the true princess.
Come on, Henry, our sonís been
pining away for his one true love for
ages now. And after that business
with the broken shoe, and thatÖhairÖ
problem, do you really want to take the
chance of turning away his bride-to-be?
I suppose youíre right.
Well then, let them in and
keep them occupied until
weíve set up the test.
All right. Just go
and get it done.
EXT. CASTLE - NIGHT
The door reopens fully, and the king gulps audibly at the looks heís receiving from the two soaked women on his doorstep.
Many apologies, good women.
I had a bit of a matter to attend to.
Wonít you please come in?
Gabrielle gives him as gracious a smile as she can manage.
Quite welcome, quite welcome, Iím
sure. Now, if you charming ladies
will just stand here for a moment, I
will get the page to summon up
some cloths to dry yourselves with.
That would be most appreciated.
INT. CASTLE BEDROOM - NIGHT
The Queen rushes into the bedroom, followed by three handmaidens.
Hurry, we must hurry!
Take all the bedding off!
Yes, mum. Címon, you
lot, put yer backs into it!
Once the bedding is removed, the Queen takes a single pea from the pocket of her gown and places it on the bed frame.
All right, start putting the
mattresses back on.
Twenty of them.
Ya Ďeard Ďer right, ya
bloody cow! Start stackin!
With much huffing and puffing and grunting, twenty mattresses are soon laid atop the bed frame.
Aíright. Whatís next, mum?
Hm. I want you to lay those
twenty eiderdown beds on
top of the mattresses.
Not a word outta you, Matilda.
Just get them beds.
Iíll get the ladder.
Much more huffing and puffing and grunting later, twenty eiderdown beds are stacked atop twenty mattresses which are stacked atop a single pea.
Whatís all this sípposed
ta do, then?
Bloody Ďell if I know. What
the Queenie wants, the
Queenie gets, right mum?
Right. Oh, Henry! Would you
please escort our guests to the
boudoir? Weíre ready for them.
Xena and Gabrielle, somewhat dried, walk into the room. The queen smiles beatifically at them both, her arms wide in welcome.
Welcome, welcome. I can see that
youíre both very tired. Iíve had this
bed prepared for you. Iím sure
youíll enjoy a good nightís rest.
Both Xena and Gabrielle slowly eye the bed that seems to tower to the ceiling. Gabrielleís smile goes a little rough around the edges.
Um... thank you?
Think nothing of it, dear woman.
Think nothing of it. Only the
best for our guests.
The queen claps her hands brightly.
Very well! Have a wonderful
sleep. We shall see you in
the morning, yes?
Um... sure! Thanks!
With that, the queen and her entourage leave, taking the ladder and closing the door behind them.
Gabrielle is still staring up at the mattress mountain.
Well. How are we
gonna get up there?
Easy. Give me your foot.
Gabrielle does so, and soon finds herself vaulted into the air. She does a neat tuck and roll, and winds up flat on her back atop the mattress pile.
Bending her knees, Xena jumps, flipping once, and coming to land sprawled out next to Gabrielle. The pile teeters and totters, forcing the women to grab the edges until it finally steadies. Gabrielle rapidly thumbs the pressure point in her wrist to rid herself of mattress sickness.
That was fun. Not.
Letís just try and get
some sleep, all right?
Gabrielle rolls to her side, is silent for a moment, then scooches around. With a sigh, she flips to the other side, and squirms some more.
What is it?
Canít get comfortable. There
must be a rock or something
under one of the mattresses.
Itís a pea.
A pea. An Austrian Winter
pea, if Iím not mistaken.
And you know this how?
I have many skills.
Oooooh. You were just
waiting to use that line,
Do you think you could get
that Austrian Winter pea the
heck out from under the mattress
so I can get some sleep?
Gabrielle, weíre lying on top of
Mount Olympus here. I am not
going to get down and search
through forty mattresses just to find
out which one has a blasted pea
underneath it. Just ignore it.
I canít ignore it!
Fine. Switch sides with me.
After much teetering and tottering, and pressure point pressing, they are finally rearranged on the bed.
Good. Now go to sleep.
Iíll try. Goodnight, Xena.
INT. CASTLE BEDROOM - MORNING
The next morning, Xena and Gabrielle awaken just in time to see the door open and the Queen comes striding into the bedroom.
How delightful! Youíre
both awake! How did
you sleep, my dears?
Without meaning to offend,
your majesty, not very well.
(a bit eagerly)
Oh? Why ever not?
Well, there was this... pea...
stuck somewhere in the
mattresses and, well....
Say no more, my dear. Youíve
passed the test! Both of you!
Test? What test?
Why, the test of sensitivity, of
course! Only a true princess would
be sensitive enough to feel a tiny
pea at the bottom of such a stack
of bedding, my dears. Henry!
Oh, Henry! Bring Junior in
to meet his true loves!
As Xena and Gabrielle stare at one another, the King enters escorting a very familiar looking prince.
Now wait a minute, Junior. These
two women have passed the test!
They are your true loves!
No buts about it, dear boy. Itís
already been foretold. These
are your true loves, and you
must marry them tonight!
Yes, dear. You passed the test!
Welcome to the family!!
Iím sorry. Thereís been
some sort of mistake here.
Oh no, dear, I assure you,
it is no mistake.
Weíre already married.
Oh? Oh, dear. That could
present a problem.
Nonsense. Iím the King.
I can annul any marriage....
To each other.
The king stares.
The queen stares.
The prince, poor fellow, faints.
This is preposterous!
Preposterous, I say!
Sorry, King. Better luck
next time, huh?
Never! It is foretold that you
shall be married to my son, and
married to my son you shall be!
Not that weíre not flattered
or anything, really, but....
Guards!!! Get them!!
EXT. SMALL TOWN SQUARE, SOME MILES AWAY - DAY
Finally having lost the pursuing guards, Xena and Gabrielle slow to a stop in the middle of a small town square. Both are winded and sweating buckets. Gabrielle walks over to a stone bench next to a fountain and sits, wiping the sweat-plastered hair from her face.
Gotta rest for a minute.
That was a lot of running to do...
on no rest and no food.
You stay right here and
cool off. Iíll check around
and get some answers.
As Xena strides off in the direction of the tavern, Gabrielle turns her face toward the fountainís cool spray.
Ahh. Thatís much better.
She looks down at her dirty and tattered clothing, noticing another rip in her skirt.
Guess Iíd better mend that
while Iíve got some time.
Pulling out a needle and thread from her bag, she sets about sewing the large, ragged tear in her skirt. Unfortunately, the lack of sleep and food once again catches up to her, and she pricks her finger, drawing a bead of blood.
All right, I get it already.
Maybe a little rest wouldnít
be a bad idea. In fact....
With a yawn and a stretch, she shifts position until she is lying flat upon the sun-warmed stone bench.
Ah, yes. Verrrrrry nice.
She quickly falls asleep.
EXT. TOWN BOUNDARY - DAY
The prince and two guards peer in from the townís boundary, all spotting Gabrielle lying asleep on the bench.
Thatís her, isnít it?
Sure looks like her.
And the oracle was right, see?
She pricked her finger with that
poisoned needle and wonít wake
up until she receives a kiss from
her true love! Thatís you, Junior.
The prince hesitates, looking around.
The other one isnít around,
is she? The big one with all
those sharp weapons?
All three scan the area.
Coast is clear, Junior.
Nowís your chance! Go!
With a swift push from behind, the prince is launched into the town square. For a long moment, he looks down at the beautiful face of his sleeping princess.
Oh, princess, it is I, your prince,
come to wake you from
your eternal sleep with a kiss.
He slowly bends down, lips puckered and ready...
... only to receive a right cross right across the puss, sending him down for the count yet again.
No one... wakes
Sleeping Beauty... but me.
Xena gathers Gabrielle up and kisses her passionately.
Gabrielleís eyelashes flutter, then open. Gabrielle beams.
VERY LOUD VOICE
ALL RIGHT! ALL RIGHT,
THATíS IT. CUT! CUT!!
Xena and Gabrielle look around, trying to determine where the voice is coming from.
A short, shriveled, disheveled, gaunt, haggard old man limps into the square, a loud talking thing in his hand.
You two have really made
a mess of things, you know?
A mess. A HUGE mess!!!
Not only did you throw the giant
down the beanstalk, you also
crushed a glass slipper I
spent millions to make...
Öcaused my three star bears
to go on strike, got my big bad
wolf so full from eating Little Red
Riding Hood and the three little
pigs that he exploded everywhereÖ
Öleft poor Rapunzel trapped in
that tower until her hair grows out
again, and if that wasnít bad enough,
you punched out Prince Charming!
HOW COULD YOU DO THIS?!?!?
We didnít mean to.
Sure you didnít. Where are you
from? Who sent you? That
Hans Christian fellow?
Mother Goose? Who??
Xena stands up, stalks over to the ranting little man and grabs him by his lapels.
Listen, mister. I donít know how we
got here. All I want to know is how to
get home. And if you donít start talkin,
I see a goose over there thatís laying
some mighty fine golden eggs. And
since Iím hungry, I just might take it
into my head to kill that golden goose
and have Gabrielle fry it up for dinner!
Yes, yes, perfectly,
(enunciating very carefully)
Then tell us how to
get home. Now.
Err. Well, it would be
easier if you had ruby
slippers, you see.
ErrÖok. Close your eyes, click
your heels together, and say three
times ďI wish I were inÖ.Ē errÖ
wherever it is that you come from.
This better work, little man. That
golden goose of yours is looking
better and better all the time.
It will! It will!
Xena and Gabrielle exchange looks, sigh, and close their eyes.
XENA AND GABRIELLE
I wish I were in Greece.
I wish I were in Greece.
I wish I were in Greece.
END ACT FOUR
EXT. CAMPSITE, SOMEWHERE IN GREECE - NIGHT
A campfire blazes cheerily, shedding its light on two figures sitting side by side. Xena is sharpening her sword while Gabrielle works on a piece of parchment.
Well, that was one
for the scrolls, huh?
Gabrielle, that was a scroll.
True. But now itís
one of mine, too.
Xena scans over the text, smiling at some parts, laughing at others.
You forgot something.
Taking the quill, she scribbles a last line, then hands the quill back, grinning.
And they lived happily ever
after. Aww. Thatís so sweet!
I donít do sweet.
Sure you do.
Not, not, not.
Too, too, too!
FADE TO BLACK.
WRITTEN ON A SCROLL
And that, boys and girls, is the story of how Joyous, the happiest storyteller in the land, became Grimm.
Many faerie tales and their characters were harmed during the making of this
motion picture, but luckily, Little Red Riding Cloak and the Three Little Pigs
were able to make a safe escape when the big bad wolf exploded.