Bluebeard’s Clever Wife

For a bit of levity at the end of the week, I’m posting a little story I wrote. It’s a fairy tale and it’s a bon bon, but it’s tiny – tiny enough to swallow whole. I hope you enjoy…

Bluebeard’s Clever Wife

Once upon a time, a girl married a man. He had a shady reputation, but she thought he was kind of cute. Plus, he was rich – not that she noticed, of course. So they married, and went to live in his castle, which was very nice and extremely isolated because he liked his alone time.

One day, shortly after they married, he told her that he had to leave on business. He gave her the keys to every lock in the house and told her she could open them all, except for one.

“Don’t, under any circumstances, open that door,” he said, pointing to a black oak door with a large iron lock. “If you do, I’ll have to kill you. Fair warning.”

Then he left.

Always a dutiful soul, she waited until the door closed behind him to go to the forbidden room. What she found shocked her. Bits and pieces of his former wives were scattered about like puzzle pieces. Hands, torsos, heads… the place was a wreck. Unable to stand the mess, she went to work reassembling the ladies, until they were all lined up, neat as pins.

She was just congratulating herself on a job well done when her husband came back home. Apparently, it had all be nothing but a test. When he discovered her in his secret room, he was understandably upset, but she impressed upon him importance of keeping things tidy. Then she showed him her improvements, which included a clever little bucket for miscellanious parts.

Bluebeard was so struck by her logic, and by the convenience of having everything close to hand, that he quickly forgave her with a hearty laugh. From that day forward, he left the door unlocked, while she, inspired by her husband’s hobby, took up the study of anatomy. They lived happily ever after.

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