[Note: for privacy's sake, I will refer to my relatives by their initials, and not even always by their real ones.]
A month or so ago, I was asking my five-year-old nephew, E.E.H., what kind of story he wanted me to tell, and he said that he wanted a princess story. I asked him what kind of princess story, and then he proceeded to tell me basically the story you find below. I have added to the ending, with the help of E.E.H.'s mother, as well as another of my sisters, K.H., and her daughter, T.H. Even now, as you can tell, I'm not so sure about the ending. Comments (especially in the form of suggestions about where to take the story from here) are welcome.
ONCE upon a time, there was a princess named Princess Nice Girl (because her parents couldn’t think of anything else to call her, and she really was a nice girl).
One day, when Princess Nice Girl was walking in the woods, she saw Santa Claus. “Hi, Santa Claus!” she said, but Santa Claus didn’t answer back because just then a dragon came and ate him up, and then flew off to his mountain!
Princess Nice girl saw that Santa’s sleigh was sitting there, with the sack of presents in it, and the reindeer all hitched up to it. Oddly enough there was a Santa Claus costume inside of the sleigh, complete with a fake white beard and white hair. Princess Nice Girl talked to the reindeer, and they agreed that she would pretend to be Santa Claus that night, so she put on the costume and flew all around the world, giving presents to everyone, and no one knew that it was her instead of the real Santa Claus, because she had the costume on.
Actually, one person did know, and that was her best friend, Minerva. Minerva thought that Princess Nice Girl should get a present, too, so when Princess Nice Girl got back, Minerva gave her a magical suit of armor and a magic sword. Princess Nice Girl put on the armor and took the sword, and then used the reindeer and sleigh to get to the mountain where the dragon lived.
She had been planning to fight the dragon, but she didn’t have to; unbeknownst to her, the dragon had started feeling sick almost as soon as he ate Santa Claus, and right as she was flying up to the cave, he threw up Santa Claus, a fish, and a pony.
Now, Santa Claus really is a very nice person, and as soon as he had washed himself off in a nearby stream and thanked Princess Nice Girl, he asked the dragon what had made him do such a horrible thing as eat him. The dragon explained that he really was a nice dragon, and he didn’t like to eat people because they tasted bad. He usually ate sheep. Lately, however, the people who owned the sheep had been getting better and better at defending them, and the dragon ate fewer and fewer sheep, and then finally he wasn’t able to catch any at all to eat, so he had gone crazy with hunger and had eaten things he almost never ate: a fish, a pony, and then finally Santa Claus.
As I said, Santa Claus really is a nice person, and he felt sad for the dragon as he listened to his story. He decided that he would give the dragon all of his spare Christmas chocolate for then (which was a lot of chocolate); and then every year after that, he would bring the dragon food to eat as a Christmas present. However, he could not allow the dragon to go around eating people, even if he was very hungry, so he asked the dragon to promise not to do it again (which the dragon was happy to do). Santa Claus also suggested to the dragon that if he was Princess Nice Girl’s servant, then Princess Nice Girl would have to pay him enough that he could eat.
Princess Nice Girl said that she would have to ask her parents if she could keep the dragon. The dragon decided that he would like to give her a ride back home, and she agreed. When she got there, her parents decided to let him stay, if he would agree to help evaluate Princess Nice Girl's suitors, of whom there were many. I know that you would like to know more about that, but you will just have to wait until another time.