The Miner and the Princess

 

They were two bodies but one soul.

He was poor, just a miner, who worked in her father’s diamond mines in Longyearbyen, Svalbard, the northernmost town in the world.

She was a princess, daughter of the Troll King, no less.

He was kind of heart, gentle, mild, always thought the best of everyone.

She was fiery, tempestuous, wild, quick to anger, but even quicker to forgive.

Together, they were the living, breathing brand ambassadors of the old adage ‘Opposites attract’!

Till she told her father about him.

The Troll King knew that his only daughter was willful, and had always got what she wanted. He tried to convince her that this was not the right choice for a princess, she should marry someone from another Troll Royal family, so that their kingdom becomes stronger. But once he saw that she had made up her mind, and was madly in love with him, his heart was no longer in the protests. She had won, they had won, for they were two bodies but one soul.

The king told his daughter, “Before I give my final approval, I want to meet the man who has stolen my darling daughter from me. But not here, in the palace, where he will be uncomfortable, and so it will be difficult to judge him properly. I will meet him at his home ground, in the mine, to gauge his true character. And one more thing, I want to meet him alone, in your presence, neither of us would be able to speak his mind.”

She was very happy, jumped with ecstasy and hugged him hard. There were tears in the eyes of both of them, one crying with joy for a future that was rosy, bright, and full of shared love, the other because he knew that he was going to wipe away that vision of a happy future from his only daughter’s eyes, and he hated himself for it.

The next day, the Troll King went to the diamond mine to meet his daughter’s beloved. There was no one else in the mine, everyone had been quietly asked to go home early that day.

The King told the Miner, “There are fifty thousand diamonds in this mine. Take as many as you want, take all of them for all I care, but I do not want to see you in this town come tomorrow morning.”

The Miner replied, “No diamond can shine the way her eyes shine, and I love her.”

The king now threatened the Miner, “I will have you, and your entire family executed publicly if you don’t leave my daughter.”

The Miner replied, “Life has no meaning for me without her, because I love her.”

The king now begged, “My daughter is a princess, raised to be a queen. But as per our rules, if she does not marry into a royal family, she can never become a queen. Don’t you want her to get what she deserves, become what she was born to become?”

The Miner replied, “She was born to become one with me, and I love her.”

The Troll King’s face fell on hearing this, and with an expression of deep sadness and regret, he said in a slow voice, “So do I.”

With that, he raised his hand and said a spell, and a cauldron of molten lava appeared high above the Miner. The king flicked his hand, and the cauldron tilted, and the deadly lava started its descent towards the unsuspecting Miner.

But suddenly, there was a loud cry, and a figure rushed and wrapped itself tightly around the Miner. It was the Princess, who had been unable to contain her curiosity about the meeting between the two people that she loved the most in this world.

She turned around and looked towards her father. She was not crying, she was not angry, she was not shouting…she was just hurt, and the disappointment in her eyes broke his heart into a thousand pieces.

He tried to stop the spell then, but it was too late. The lava had already reached the Miner. But before it could touch the Miner, the Princess hugged her lover tightly, and then…melted to cover his entire body with her own, so that let alone the lava, even air could not touch him anymore.

The lava hit them, and the protective layer formed by the Princess’s body held out as long as it could, but finally, it started turning to a bronze-like metal….and within seconds, the Miner had become a bronze statue.

The Princess and the Miner were now one body and one soul!

And to this day, lovers from all across Svalbard come to this statue to take the blessings of the two lovers, and it is said that as long as the statue exists, no parent can deny their daughter or son the chance to be united in their true love, for if they do, they will have to face the wrath of the Troll King, who keeps a ceaseless vigil over his daughter and her beloved, the lovers with one body and one soul!

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Disclaimer: My usual disclaimer applies. No such story exists in Svalbard, the mythology is totally made up from scratch, only the statue of the Miner takes a pride of place in Longyearbyen Town Center. Who he is, why is he there, google could easily tell us the truth I guess, but then, where’s the fun in that!

About anuragbakhshi

At the age of 40, I decided to exit the corporate world, and enter the world of stories as a full-time writer. Wish me luck!
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