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If something's not right, you gotta put it right.
They watched from a veilig distance as they saw the mermaid swim up to the strand carrying Eric. She placed him on the sand and muziek started to play softly. Meg raised an eyebrow as Ariel began to sing.
“Puhlease,” she whispered. “Can’t we just sabotage this bit?”
“Think of how to do it and you’re welcome,” Esmeralda replied.
Meg looked around her for something to jog her mind when she saw a man walking along the strand towards them.
“Who the hell is that?” she asked, pointing.
“Grimsby,” Jane nodded. “He discovers Eric and takes him up to the palace.”
“I have an idea,” Meg smiled and ran towards Grimsby.
She held her skirts as she ran along and was stopped in her path door a large, hairy dog.
“Max,” Grimsby called. “Max, leave her alone!”
Max sniffed at Meg’s feet and kept blocking her way. Eventually, she gave up and stood waiting for Grimsby.
“You haven’t seen a Prince, have you?” he asked.
“Why, there is a man upon the beach,” Meg smiled, trying to hold back giggles. “We should run there as quickly as possible.”
Max looked up at her, almost like he understood, and dashed off towards the beach. Meg ran after him and Grimsby followed. The heroines ducked out of sight as the dog ran past, barking. He was too early and Ariel’s song was cut short in the middle of a line as she jumped into the water to escape detection.
“Prince Eric!” Grimsby called, happily. “So that girl was right, u are here… Where has she gone?”
“What girl, Grim?” Eric tried to struggle to his feet and Grimsby pulled him up.
“Oh, I’ll tell u all about her,” he chuckled. “She was beautiful. I wonder where she went.”
“You sure u didn’t dream her up?”
The two men walked off into the distance and the heroines peered around to see Ariel on the rock, ready to start her big number.
“What do we do now?” Kida hissed.
“Either we think of how to sabotage this part,” Esme shrugged. “Or we pay Eric a visit.”
“Eric!” Kida smiled.
They waited for Ariel to finish and disappear before they walked along the strand to the palace. It didn’t take them long until they reached the elaborate front gates. It was flanked at either side door guards, with another guard in either watchtower.
“I’m the girl that helped Grimsby find Prince Eric,” Meg smiled to them. “And these are my sisters.” The heroines all waved to the guards and Esme blew them a sneaky kiss.
“Go right in,” one of them said, staring at the group.
“You need to teach me how to do that,” Meg whispered as they walked inside.
They were in a wonderful courtyard of white marble with a fontein in the centre. There were great plants at the walls and flowers of all the colours of the regenboog in neat little beds beside the drive. The road circled the fontein and had many carriages parked alongside it. The girls walked along, staring around in awe, until they reached the door to the palace. Meg knocked and waited. Before long, an elderly woman arrived at the door.
“Yes?” she asked.
“I helped Grimsby find Prince Eric,” Meg smiled. “And these are my sisters.”
“Grimsby!” the woman called.
“Yes, Carlotta?” he answered, coming to the door.
“Is this that mystery girl of your’s?”
Meg fluttered her eyelashes at Grimsby and he turned red.
“Yes,” he nodded swiftly. “Bring her in.”
“What about her sisters?”
“Yes, yes,” Grimsby waved his hand as he walked away. “Bring them all in.”
The heroines filed into the large entrance hall, staring around at the high ceiling and enormous staircase.
“This way,” Grimsby beckoned and they followed him into a long room filled with glass windows and a large dining table. Eric was standing at the far end, staring out to sea. The sun was setting and the heroines found themselves yawning, almost like the film was making them feel sleepy.
“Oh, I am so very tired,” Alice groaned.
“Shhh,” Meg glared at her. “This is important.”
“Eric,” Grimsby called. “Eric, it’s that girl I told u about.” The Prince turned around and saw the heroines all grouped together.
“Which one?” he laughed.
“This one,” Grimsby took Meg’s hand and lead her forwards. “What’s your name, dear?”
“Meg,” she smiled.
“Grim, I meant to tell you,” Eric said. “I have my own mystery girl. She was on the strand and she was singing. Her voice was beautiful. I’ve decided that that is the girl I’m going to marry.”
“Did u see any girl?” Grimsby asked.
“No. Just me and my sisters.”
“How many sisters do u HAVE?” Eric asked, staring at the heroines.
“There’s me, Esmeralda, Kida, Jane, Alice and Eilonwy,” Meg shrugged. “We’ve come here just to see you. Erm, to make sure you’re ok of course.”
“Well, Grim,” Eric smiled. “I’m sure these girls don’t want to have to travel in the dark. Prepare some rooms for them.”
“Of course,” Grimsby nodded and walked away.
Eric sat down at the tafel, tabel and the heroines all crowded around him.
“Sit down,” he said. “I insist.”
The girls all sat in two rows on either side of the table, Meg on Eric’s right side and Esme on his left.
“So, Prince Eric,” Esme smiled.
“Please, just call me Eric.”
“So, Eric, what are u planning to do tomorrow?”
“Well, I walk my dog on the strand every morning…”
“Can we come with you?” Alice asked.
“Sure, kiddo,” he chuckled.
“It’s getting late,” Meg nodded. “Our younger sisters should go to bed.” They all stood up and walked off, leaving Eric at the table.
“What are u doing?” Eilonwy asked.
“Me and Meg can take care of this,” Esmeralda winked. “We have certain charms u all lack.” Meg laughed and the other heroines scowled, walking out into the hall. Esmeralda shut the door behind them and the two turned to look at Eric.
“And then there were three,” he shrugged.
“Eric,” Esmeralda smiled, walking over to him. “You do look very dashing this evening.” She sat on the tafel, tabel and leant across it in front of him. “That overhemd, shirt really accentuates those tight muscles of your’s.”
“Oh, yes,” Meg giggled, resting on the back of his chair and playing with his hair. “And we have heard that u are in need of a wife.”
“I’m marrying the girl from the beach,” he insisted. “I’m afraid there’s no meer Eric to go around.”
“You don’t mean that,” Esme moved closer to him, placing a hand on his shoulder. “She doesn’t even exist.”
“You know,” Eric got up. “It’s getting late, I should get to bed.”
“Sit down,” Esme sat up, pushing him back into the seat.
“Or not…” he mumbled.
“You’re ruining us!” Meg cried out. “You and your stupid movie!”
“Shut up,” Esme snarled.
“Movie? What movie?”
“Nothing,” Esmeralda smiled. “She’s just confused. She has to go to bed.” Meg glared at her as she walked away, leaving and shutting the door behind her.
“And then there were two,” Eric gulped.
“Let’s get one thing clear,” she stood up beside him. “You will do as we say when we say it.”
“Or what?” he asked.
“Or what?” Esmeralda raised an eyebrow. “Or u might have to say goodbye to a certain aspect of yourself, that’s what.”
“Fine,” he laughed nervously. “I’ll do what u say. Just do one thing for me.”
“It depends what that one thing is,” she shrugged. “You’re not really on a bargaining stance.”
“I have a palace full of guards at my command. u have no choice.”
“Sure,” she rolled her eyes. “Spill, then.”
“For every single thing I do for you, u give me something in return.”
“A kiss, perhaps?” he smirked.
“Hah!” Esmeralda laughed at the irony of it. “Yes, yes, ok. I’ll u see in the morning then.” She leant down and pecked him on the lips before walking off. Eric raised his eyebrows as she left and she laughed at him again.
“Good night,” he called.
“Good night,” she winked.
The hall was much darker than she remembered, and she looked up the staircase to see Eilonwy stood at the top, boven in a nightdress. She climbed up the stairs quickly.
“So?” Eilonwy asked.
“So he’s going to do what we say,” Esme shrugged. “We’ve got to walk a dog in the morning.”
“Good,” she nodded. “About time we found our place.”
“Hold your horses,” Esme glared. “We’ve got to get through this film first before we even start thinking about the others, let alone succeeding.”
“Whatever,” she rolled her eyes. “Your room is down there. They’ve all been kitted out with clothes and everything. That Eric sure is resourceful.”
“Well, make sure u have your roze dress for when we leave,” she said, walking off to her room. “Clopin won’t be happy if we lose his stuff.”
She walked inside and stared in awe at the vast padded room before her. Was nothing in this film muted? Well, it was the 80s. She changed into a nightgown that had been left to her before she tumbled into the bed. It was heaven compared to what she was used to. Before long, her eyes had closed and she was sound asleep.