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Chapter 7

The Unfulfilled Wish

One will be born as draft and will be busy a whole life to find out which blossom one should bud.

In the palace he tapped his foot twice and immediately two of his officials appeared. They lifted him up and placed him on the sun throne. He still felt rather ridiculous because of his short legs. Aron pinched his lips and snarled at his wish official: "I want be big and strong right now."

Deep furrows marked the face of the wish official and the dark rings around his eyes gave witness to the fact that there was no end to the prince's wishes day or night. He said: "Your Majesty, this is the only wish I cannot fulfill."

"Are you the wish official or not?" Aron chided the official brusquely with angry, glaring eyes.

"Majesty, every human being has to grow by himself. Everybody begins small - even a prince. Your wish will be fulfilled, but not immediately," he dampened Aron's expectations. "Find your way, and you will grow and never be sad again."

"But I don't want to wait! I want to be big right now! How tall are you, by the way?" the prince asked the flabbergasted official.

"I am nine feet tall."

"I'm taller," answered the prince who had just reached about five feet. A haughty streak appeared on his lips. But his eyes betrayed a deep melancholy. When he noticed that the wish official wasn't about to do anything, the prince thought hard how he could advance in this matter. After all, he had pictured everything already nicely in his imagination. Simply because the wish official lost his nerve, he wasn't going to give up so easily. The prince absolutely wanted to reach his height with or without the wish official.

"Why didn't I think of it right away," he said to himself, slapping his forehead. His face lit up and the next moment, he stuck his head into the big toy chest. What a mess that was! "It has to be in here somewhere," the prince moaned while rummaging. His saber, his lead soldiers, canons, drummers, the nutcracker, and a dead rat, all flew to the floor while the blood rose to his head. He looked up and fixed his gaze desperately on the silent dancing girl. She seemed to ask him: "What are you looking for?"

"I'm looking for my height. It has to be around here somewhere," Aron mulled it over while continuing to rummage through the chest. Of course, height isn't a toy and so he didn't find it. The prince really had thought the search to be much easier.

"If not here, where then?" he asked. His toy chest was the only place where everything he cared about was stashed away. So why not his height? "Where for God's sake could it have gone. Or could it be that the cat ate it?" But his cat was, as so often, roaming about the world. If she wasn't in the palace, she couldn't possible have eaten anything out of my chest, the prince gave his wandering cat that much credit. He was at the end of his rope. Disappointed he flung himself into his chair, let the dancing girl dance, and listened to the sound of the harp. When she had finished her dance, he put her against his ear. And it was then that he heard again the mysterious throbbing.

"I can't solve your mystery," he said. "I can't even solve my own mystery." He placed the toy clock back on the dresser and continued to torture himself with the question where his height might be hiding. The chest, meanwhile, was waiting to receive the toy company again. But it was far from the prince's mind to clean up. He let disorder be disorder and took off for the castle garden.

Aron ran down the long hallways of the castle and crossed the knights' hall in the middle of which was a long table enticingly decked out for a feast. At times, he thought he could har the noise of boisterous, reveling knights. But nobody was there, only a large hearth in which the fire ignited as soon as someone entered the hall. The firewood crackled briskly as if it was expecting any moment the armored warriors to enter for a festive meal. At the end of the knights' hall, directly next to the door, stood a lance and on the opposite side was a complete knight's armor. Every time he stormed past, the prince pulled the knight's foot. "God be with you, Kunibert," the prince greeted the hollow set of armor. When the metal started to clink, it sounded as if the armor answered: "God bless you, descendant." But today the answer seemed more like "who seeketh, findeth."

"Don't you dare make fun of me, forebear." The prince slammed the door behind him and the fire in the hearth extinguished on the spot.

Aron stepped out of the palace into the sunshine (1) (2) (3) (4) (5) (6) (7) . The windows of the officials' conference hall were wide open. He had to strain his ears to hear what the officials were talking about.


"It's a tragedy," said the official for good thoughts. "He's like a leaf in the wind."

"But he has everything. Why can't he be content?" asked the wish official.

"Because he is missing something and because his longing is in search of that which will make him happy. . ." replied the official for good thoughts.

"It seems to me that he's looking in the wrong places. He believes that being tall will make him happy. He's simply unwilling to accept the fact that even a prince has to start at the bottom." Then they put their heads together so that the little prince couldn't hear anything further.

"Aha," pondered the sun prince. "If growing taller won't make me happy, then there must be something else."

At this moment, the seven peacocks entered the officials' hall. Probably in order to brood over the secret of the golden hats together with the officials, for the wish official had nothing more urgent to do then to close the windows.

Thus Aron had no choice but to while away the time in the castle garden. When he came back, the doors to the officials' hall were wide open. So then, seems the secret session is over, Prince Aron drew a sharp conclusion. He ran into the throne room and called for the official of good thoughts.

"I'm asking you the most important question of my life. My entire happiness depends on your answer." The official listened attentively.

"How can I find out what my heart desires?"

"It's not as difficult as you think. But it requires discipline," replied the official for good thoughts. He never had to search for an answer, for the good thoughts were embedded in him. Prince Aron puffed up his cheeks and furrowed his brow. He didn't like the word "discipline."

"Every morning upon awaking, write down your dream. Write down what is uppermost in your thoughts, what moves you. Write every morning for several weeks. Then put the paper aside and go back to it only several months later. On reading it, you will recognize, among the many details, that which is uppermost in your heart and what you would like to talk about. Then you will be able to name the longing of your soul and assume the right place in life." Thus spoke the official for good thoughts.

"That's too much of a bother to me. You can do that by yourself," was the little prince's cheeky reply.

"Then again, you can just think about how you spend most of your time," the official retorted to give the prince a leg up.

Most of my time, thought Aron, I'm annoyed about something or other. So this can't be it either. There must be a better way, he hoped. To get to the bottom of this, he waited for his angel in the evening. With eyes closed tight, Aron wished for the sound of bells and the bright light to appear. Something seemed to be touching his shoulder.

"What worries you?" asked the angel sympathetically.

"I don't know what my soul wants. It's like a bird. Sometimes it flutters here and sometimes there. I'm restless and impatient."

"Pay attention to the signs, then you will find your way. Exercise patience, everything needs time. You are still very young," the angel comforted the little prince.

"That's what annoys me the most. I finally want to grow and be a grown up," Aron countered.

"Sometimes it is better to remain a child. Adults are no longer able to see angels. They don't believe in us because they are too reasonable." While speaking thus, the angel looked at him so mysteriously that his face began to glow in all its beauty.

The prince forgot what they had just been talking about. He blushed and said nothing more. In his stomach wriggled a thousand bugs. Although the angel had left with the light, the prince lay awake in the dark for a long time, unable to sleep. The angel had tapped on his heart. next

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