“Worthless girl!” Pat yelled. “Can’t you do anything right?” Grabbing her hairbrush, Nieve’s mother-of-step began beating the ten year old. “I told you to clean that mirror! There’s still a streak in it!”
The little girl tried fending off the blows, but fell back and hit her head on the mother-of-steps glass slipper that had been her prize in a step-dancing competition. She was never the same after that.
Years later, mother-of-step Pat began noticing Nieve’s beauty. The little girl was beginning to look more and more like her mother, the only person to ever beat Pat in a beauty pageant.
It wasn’t until she called the psychic hot-line and asked the fatal question, “Who is the fairest of them all?” that the jealousy grew to unbearable amounts. The inevitable answer came, “One that lives with thee, yet is not of your blood, surpasses your in beauty, oh glorious chewer of cud.”
Enraged, she flipped through her black-mail rolodex for the right henchman. Yes, Rupert, the great hunter, had once been seen playing croquette, and she had the pictures to probe it. Calling him up, the order was soon given and Nieve would be no more. Next in line for the special treatment was that psychic who had called her a cow. Maybe she’d frame the milkman for it later.
Rupert took Nieve deep into the heart of the urban jungle. Never having been out on her own, Nieve eagerly looked in all the shop windows. She was entranced by the shiny cell phones and nice air fresheners.
Rupert had his chance, while the mime imitating a river had her distracted. He raised his double barrel .98 rifel in preparation to let loose twin hells within her tiny body. But, he couldn’t bring himself to do it. That mime wouldn’t stop staring at him. Those limped eyes, the trembling lower lip, the wiped away false tear; no, he could not kill the girl. Instead, he shot the mime.
Terrified by the noise, Nieve ran through the confusing allies and streets. Every turn she took left her more and more lost. It wasn’t until late night that she finally found some bit of refuge.
A door to a pizza store was open. She entered, entranced by the smell of good food. Roars and the sound of banging metal streamed out from a back room.
Grabbing a half eaten slice of pizza from an abandoned plate, she followed the noises. What she saw thrilled her.
Seven dwarves were battling on a sandy floor. They were dressed as gladiators from Rome and fighting to the last. Elves and Nyads cheered them on, betting drinks on who would win. But, when Nieve entered, silence fell.
“Heark! Tis She of the Half Eaten Pizza!” Cod, a dwarf, called out. All bowed.
“Um, hi,” Nieve waved. “Can I play?”
“Sure!” Cod handed her a short sword, breastplate, and helmet. After a quick lesson in rules of battle, she was allowed to spar. To the amazement of all, she won. As a reward for her bravery in battle, she was given a place to stay amongst the Seven Short Gladiators in their pizza parlor home/ Magic role playing establishment. It didn’t take long before Nieve began establishing herself as quite the warrior amongst the role players.
It also didn’t take long before mother-of-step Pat found out about Nieve’s existence. It was through a contact from Joliet Pizza that she learned of the warrior princess. Again, the jealousy came and she vowed to kill the girl.
Having spent some time role playing in her youth, Pat knew just how to attack Nieve. After all, if Rupert couldn’t do it, a woman was obviously needed for the job.
Dressing up in her old hag costume, she took her Jaguar to Seven Short Gladiators Pizza and quickly found Nieve.
“Hello, dear,” she crooned. “Are the Seven Short Gladiators in?”
“Oh, no. They’re resting. Those Sidharian Elves and Pookas last night really tired them out. I did manage to beat the Troll though!”
“Well, you are quite a beautiful warrior,” Pat complimented.
“Why, thank you!” Nieve exclaimed quite prettily. She always loved compliments.
“Here, as a reward, I’ve brought you a special corset. I wore it in my glory days.”
“Yes, it’s just for you. Why don’t you put it on?”
Happily, Nieve took Pat into the back room and allowed her to fit the corset around her tiny waist. Tighter and tighter, Pat pulled the laces. When Nieve complained, she only said, “Beauty is painful,” and pulled the laces yet tighter. Nieve stopped complaining and let Pat continue to constrain her breathing.
When the laces were as tight enough to cut a hot dog in half, Pat tied the knots and left. Nieve didn’t last long without much air and dropped down, near dead.
A short time later, Neezer, one of the dwarfs, came downstairs and found her. He quickly cut the corset’s laces and young Nieve regained her breath.
“You’re a lucky one,” he warned. “Never, ever let anyone into the store unless one of us are down here.”
“Ok,” Nieve agreed. She always went along with whatever anyone told her.
A week later, Pat returned. She had heard from the pizza delivery boy once again that Nieve was alive and making quite a name for herself. She had beaten almost everyone in the district since her rise to role playing stardom.
Once again, in her old hags costume, Pat visited Nieve. And she gave her a comb, with the tips dipped in poison. The gullible girl happily let the nice old lady in so she could get a nice gift.
Pat drove the comb deeply into Nieve’s hair, scratching her scalp. The girl screamed and fell down, near dead once again. Pat left, happy that she had killed Nieve for now.
Once again, one of the dwarfs came down and rescued Nieve. Having experience with different poisons, Mike quickly recognized the poison and the cure. He poured the pizza sauce on her head and Nieve was soon awake once again, the red sauce dripping dramatically down her lovely face.
“Foolish girl. We told you not to let anyone in!” he scolded.
“I’m sorry! She wanted to give me a gift!”
“Next time you do it, you’re dead.”
That night, Nieve spoke with a Sidharian Elf while waiting her chance in the arena. “I’ve been dead twice already!” she bragged.
“I once used the Lazarus Pit to come back and defeat an Ogre.”
They continued to chat, getting quite comfortable with each other.
Nieve munched on an apple, and inhaled to cheer on Dwarf Scully as he fought the evil Mountain Monster. Oh, dratted inhalation that dragged that chunk of apple down into her windpipe! She tried and tried to cough, to breathe, and couldn’t. The oxygen was cut off to her simple brain and she fell down, once again near dead.
Realizing the dire peril his warrior beauty was in, the Sidharian Elf quickly did the Heimlich and brought her back.
“Better now!” Nieve exclaimed happily as she popped up.
“I love you,” the elf exclaimed.
“And I love you!”
They kissed and lived happily ever after.