‘Tickling Butterflies’ – How Monsters Work

Tickling Butterflies is an epic fantasy, containing 128 fairy tales that together create one huge story.

Here’s the story so farThe story continues:


How Monsters Work

(Containing the gruesome tale of monsters that acted reasonably.)


Now I will tell you how monsters work, Minister Vazir said and began to tell another tale revealing the secrets of magic in the magical land known as the Land of All Legends.

A long, long time ago, back in a past so long and far away that the Original Monster was still young to the world, the land was filled with monsters that do not exist today. We are not too sure about the details of what they looked like and how they behaved. Their tales are so far gone that we are not even sure what they were called. But scientists generally believed these monsters were called Dinosaurs.

Our tale begins with a monster hunter and his small son. The son was afraid of the dark. The monster hunter, whose name we do not know, faced real monsters every day. And yet his little son, who had only heard of monsters from his father, was afraid that monsters lived under his bed.

And so the monster hunter took a year off from monster hunting. During that year, he learned the secrets of magic that were known at the time. Using the secrets of magic, he built a gadget called the Fear/Fact Sifter.

The Fear/Fact Sifter was small and square and had a long nose, which you could point at anything you wanted. Once you pointed it, the Fear/Fact Sifter would tell you whether there was a reason to be afraid of the object you were pointing at, or whether there was no reason to be afraid. The Fear/Fact Sifter’s purpose was to tell the monster hunter’s son whether he was afraid because there was, in fact, something frightening; or maybe he was afraid just because he was afraid.

The monster hunter’s son took the Fear/Fact Sifter everywhere and pointed it at everything. Soon he learned what he could be afraid of and what he shouldn’t be afraid of. Most of his fears were gone within a few months.

The success of the Fear/Fact Sifter spread quickly through the Land of All Legends, which was small at the time, and all the parents and all the children wanted one. Even the monster hunters began to hunt the Dinosaurs by pointing the Fear/Fact Sifter’s nose at trees and learning if the monsters were hiding behind them.

The Dinosaurs had a meeting. They agreed that they did not like the Fear/Fact Sifter. The Dinosaurs, being monsters, liked it when people were afraid of them. They saw it as a large part of their role in the world to scare parents, so that their parents would scare their children, and then the children would be afraid of almost everything. That is how monsters work.

The monsters decided that the Fear/Fact Sifter must be destroyed, so that their reign of fear can continue. However, destroying the Fear/Fact Sifter was not enough. They wanted to destroy the monster hunter who invented the machine, because he might build more machines himself, or he may even tell people how to build them.

Monster Dinosaurs were sent to destroy the monster hunter, but he always knew they were coming, because he had the Fear/Fact Sifter. He was always prepared, and so he always killed them before they could sneak up on him.

After dozens of monster Dinosaurs died trying to sneak up on the monster hunter and kill him, the Dinosaurs held another meeting. They decided that to get rid of the Fear/Fact Sifter, they had to make the monster hunter a reasonable offer, which he could not refuse.

And so they sent their weakest Dinosaur to talk to him. The Dinosaur was so weak and his intentions were peaceful, that the Fear/Fact Sifter did not see him as a reason to be afraid.

The weak Dinosaur negotiated with the monster hunter, and in the end they agreed that the monster hunter will never build another Fear/Fact Sifter, and that he would destroy all existing machines. In return, the monster hunter will get magical beans that will grow food for him and his children for the next three hundred years.

The monster hunter agreed, and, true to his words, destroyed all evidence of the Fear/Fact Sifter. The Dinosaurs were also true to their words, and gave him all the magical beans he needed.

Now the Dinosaur monsters were happy that they could return to creating fear in the minds of children and adults. But because of all the meetings and all the negotiations they had held, they had become reasonable monsters and were no longer frightening to anyone.

The Dinosaur monsters had become not monstrous at all. And since they were no longer monstrous, their bodies could not cope with the change. After all, monsters work because monsters create fear. When they don’t create fear, they die. And so, within a few years, all the monster Dinosaurs died, and in their place came the scary monsters we know today.

That has been the ancient story revealing the secrets of how monsters work. This has also been the ancient story revealing the secret of why the Dinosaurs died.

King John the Cute nodded. “I never knew how monsters work. That is enlightening. You are truly helping us understand the magic of the land and its history. Please, continue.”

“As you wish, your highness.”


(To be continued on Tuesday…)
You can win a chance to have a fairy tale written about you in the Tickling Butterflies universe!

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