So, I went and saw the new Cinderella last week and it made me feel...uncomfortable. I guess I'm getting used to seeing stronger female characters these days and new Cinderella seemed like a step waaaaaaay in the wrong direction. Which was too bad, because it was a gorgeous movie. And evil Cate Blanchett is the best. Anyways, I decided to FIX IT.
Once upon a time there was a fair maiden named Ella. She lived with her mother and father in the countryside of an enchanted kingdom. Their provincial bliss was shattered however, when her mother fell ill and dropped dead. Ella was heartbroken, but vowed to herself that she would keep her final promise to her dying mother and always "Have courage and be kind."
The years past and Ella's father remarried. His hot new wife and her two monster daughters moved in to the family home. Try as Ella might to be kind to these basic bitches, she never won over their affections. When Ella's father also died, Ella's stepmother and stepsisters treated her more cruelly than ever. Dismissing the household staff, her stepmother ran Ella ragged keeping up with the housework. Her stepsisters began referring to her as "Cinderella" because of the cinders Ella had smudged on her face doing chores for those bitches.
One night, consumed with woe at her predicament, Ella collapsed in tears. "Why didn't my parents make sure I had any life skills!" she wailed "Or an education! How am I ever going to leave this place and get a job? Being kind is proving to be fucking u-hu-hu-seless!"
Just then, in a whirl of fairy dust, some woman popped into existence.
"Jesus Christ!" yelped Ella.
"Not quite," said the woman "I'm your Fairy Swordmaster, I'm here to transform you into an elite warrior."
"Really?" asked Ella "But why? Does everybody have a Fairy Swordmaster?"
"Nope, just hot maidens." Replied the fairy woman "Now lets get started doing drills."
"Drills? But I thought you said you were going to transform me into an elite warrior." Protested Ella.
"And I will," said her Fairy Swordmaster "through hard work and dedication. You can't just be great at something."
And so began Ella's training. She spent years honing her craft, leaving her miserable Stepmother and Stepsisters to clean up their own messes. As her skills grew, Ella also noticed a change in how her Stepfamily treated her. Now that Ella was no longer a pushover, her Stepsisters treated her if not with warmth, then at least with a grudging respect. Her Stepmother remained cold and distant, but with Ella practicing swordplay in the study, she seemed disinclined to order her around any longer.
When at last Ella was able to sever the wings from a gnat with one swipe of her sword tip, her Fairy Swordmaster declared that she was now an Elite Warrior.
“Now you’ll need a better weapon than that rusty old stick. And a new outfit too, I shouldn’t wonder.” Said the Fairy Swordmaster “Bibbity, Bobbity, Boo!”
Ella’s rags transformed into a beautiful blue battlegown. And in her hands appeared a glass rapier.
“Oh my!” said Ella “It’s so beautiful. But its glass, won’t it break?”
“Yes,” said the Fairy Swordmaster “But it always regenerates, leaving you with a new sword, and the razor sharp shards of your previous thrust embedded in your enemies.”
“Holy shit,” said Ella “that’s pretty grizzly.”
“Battle is pretty grizzly.” Said her Fairy Swordmaster “Now off to the castle with you! This kingdom that could use a few good knights.”
And with that, Ella went off to join the royal guard. With her skills as finely honed as they were, Ella dazzled the higher ups with her performance on the battlefield and her achievements soon earned her the attentions of the Prince.
Ella and the Prince struck up a friendship. Ella appealed to the Prince for tips on the finer points of war waging. In Ella the Prince found a friend in which he could truly confide.
One fine summer’s day, after a sweaty afternoon spent on the training grounds, the Prince admitted to Ella that he had a secret.
“With my father’s health on the decline the pressure is on fore me to find a suitable wife to be queen when I ascend to the throne.” The Prince explained. “With ours being such a small kingdom, it is thought that I should marry someone from a neighboring, more powerful nation. This alliance would ensure the security for the people of our kingdom, which as you know, I value above all things.”
“So what’s the problem?” asked Ella through a mouthful of mead.
“The problem,” said the Prince “ Is that the fine and eligible princesses of our neighboring countries don’t really…interest me.”
“Why not?” Burped Ella.
“Well my tastes are a little more specific.” Admitted the Prince.
“In what way?” Ella asked.
“Feet.” Said the Prince.
“Yes,” the Prince sighed “Particularly very small feet. Particularly very small feet in elaborate and costly shoes.”
“Oh.” said Ella, not quite sure what else to say. This seemed like a pretty weird criteria for romantic interest. But then again, who was Ella to judge? She’s spent a number of years straight up talking to only mice. She’d even made little human clothes for them.
“Well,” mused Ella “If what we’re trying to ultimately do here is ensure the security of the kingdom, then maybe an advantageous marriage isn’t the only option. I mean, what our little kingdom lacks in acreage it makes up for in a disproportionally large and well trained fighting force. With your tactical knowledge and my particular set of skills in the murder department, we could conquer those neighboring kingdoms and you would never have to marry anybody!”
“Ella! You are a genius!” exclaimed the Prince, flooded with relief that he wouldn’t be spending his life tethered to some regular-footed woman.
And so, together, the Prince and Ella conquered the neighboring kingdoms, razing their castles to the ground and claiming their lands and goods for themselves. The Prince eventually became King and promoted Ella to Supreme High Commander of the Armed Services. Together they led the Kingdom to prosperity, at the expense of lesser, pussy kingdoms.
Ella would later run into her Wicked Step Mother at an arts fair. Her stepmother had set up a booth for her artisanal haberdashery: Hat Couture. Ella stifled the urge to disembowel the woman on the spot as her Step Mother apologized for the way she had treated Ella all those years ago.
“I was deeply depressed, having literally lost two husbands right in a row. And you were such an easy target for my misplaced anger, you know, until you started carrying that sword around the house and I just…I just wanted you to know how sorry I am for dealing with that situation so poorly. And for raising such cunty daughters.”
Ella considered her Stepmother, whom she had imagined to be more monster than human for all these years. And she thought back to her own grief at her father’s death. How she had tried to blot out the hurt with anxiety-fueled over-kindness, convinced that if she was just good enough then the people she loved would stop leaving her. Maybe this woman’s path had been just as hard as hers.
“They were the worst.” Said Ella “What did you even do with those two?”
Her Stepmother laughed “I sent them to military school! After you left they had no one to be afraid of so they became complete nightmares. I shipped them off. Anastatia did alright but Drisella got pretty into Crystal Meth for a while. She’s cleaned up her act through. She’s got two labradors! I know I have photos in this handbag somewhere…”
This small reunion eventually warmed into friendship and Ella would meet her Stepmother most Sundays for brunch. Ella wasn’t sure she would like brunch, what with her warrior woman reputation. But it turned out that brunch is FANTASTIC. And it seemed that Ella and her Stepmother had a ruthlessness in common which was great fun to take out on waiters. They would gossip about the hat shop and the King’s growing reputation for harassing small-footed maidens, sending back poached eggs that were "Not nearly runny enough! What do I have to do? Come back there and poach them myself??". And so they lived, enjoying bottomless mimosas, ever after.