Other Tales






Other Tales is a collection of alternative fairy tales; the stories include “Ruby and Romulus,” “The Prince Rejected,” “Jill and the Bean Stalk,” “Beau and the Beast,” “Sleeping Beauty’s Escape from Date Rape,” “The Twelfth Princess,” “Snow White and the Huntsgirl,” “Andersen’s ‘The Little Mermaid’:  The Wicked Woman Version,” “The Little Mermaid:  The Sacred Version,” “The Frog and the Transgender Prince,” “Hansel and Gregory,” “Lenora’s Prince,” “Jane’s Knight,” “P Pan and Beyondland,” “The Mirror,” and “Anton, the Steadfast Soldier, and Tatiana, the Steadfast Dancer.”






Summaries of the stories are listed below.

“Ruby and Romulus” is a Little Red Riding Hood story.  Ruby is Little Red’s great-granddaughter.  She goes to live with her grandmother and great aunt in the woods, were the women are midwives and healers.  In woods, Ruby meets Romulus, a werewolf, and they fall in love.  Despite some surprise from both sets of families, the two are allowed marry and settle in Little Red Riding Hood’s cottage.  (“Ruby and Romulus” has been published in The Fairy Tale Whisper 2015.)

“The Prince Rejected” is a Cinderella story.  Cindy is a girl whose mother dies and father remarries.  The step-mother treats Cindy badly.  The king of the land calls for a series of balls to attend, and Cindy asks the fairies to help her attend.  Among the guests are Cindy’s neighbors, Lilly and Jeremy Fenn.  As Cindy dances with both Jeremy and the prince other several evenings, she realizes that she loves Jeremy and leaves the before the seven balls are over.  When Jeremy returns home with his sister, he and Cindy are married and are happy.

“Jill and the Beanstalk” is a Jack and the Beanstalk story, except Jill doesn’t go to the giant world to steal or kill.  She goes to try to heal the magical world, to bring love back to decimated landscape and terrorized people.  Through love, she able to do that before return to the human world, her mother, and their farm.      

“Beau and the Beast” is Beauty and the Beast story, only Beauty is a boy instead of a girl.  Beau and his blind grandmother meet the Beast, Nathaniel in the woods.  Gwyn, the grandmother, was a mid-wife at the castle before see lost her sight, so she knows Nathaniel and the story of his transformation into a beast.  She is not afraid of him, and she and Beau return with Nathaniel to the castle.  The three of them grow close, but Beau and Nathaniel realized that they are sexually attracted to each other.  Beau finally tells Nathaniel that he loves him, and the fairy appears and transforms Nathaniel back into a boy and restores the castle inhabitants. 

“Sleeping Beauty’s Escape from Date Rape” is complicated. Princess Maleficent is raped by Prince Edward, and her parents and others royal to them are slaughtered by King John’s men (Prince Edward’s father) in an effort to seized Maleficent’s queendom.  Maleficent’s handmaid, Maeve, and her brother, Anthony, get Maleficent out of the castle and to the midwife, Hestia.  Hestia cares for the princess; she is also caring for the sorceress, Cassandra.  When they are able to travel, the five of them make for the nearest queendom to ask for help.  Along the way, the children are taught by the midwife and sorceress.  The princess summons a dragon, and her dragon friend and the princess teach the others to summon dragons.  Armed with dragons and weapons, the abandon their flight and return to destroy King John, Prince Edward, and their men.  Restored to her throne, the princess opens up her queendom to magical peoples and creatures.  On a more personal level, Maleficent wishes that rape would cease to be a problem in her queendom, and a bold plan decided upon where her people are introduced to the worship of the Great Goddess and her ways and with fairy knights and dragon hatchlings seeking out inappropriate behavior and putting at stop to it.  Among those saved from rape is Lady Aurora who has been drugged (Sleeping Beauty) by Lord Phillip.

“The Twelfth Princess” is about Sophie, the youngest princess.  As Sophie and her sisters get older, Sophie watches her sisters get married off and becomes increasing uncomfortable with fate of brides and wives in her culture.  Armed with knowledge of an older, more woman friendly culture, Sophie explores the wild places around the palace until she finds a cave with a pool that gives her a passage into the old world.  As Sophie adjusts to the ways of the old world and partners with a boy named Tobin, she makes the decision to stay in the old world and make it her new home.  (“The Twelfth Princess” was published in Pagan 2015).

“Snow White and the Huntsgirl” is about Snow White being groomed by her step-mother, Queen Lauren, to be a queen herself someday.  As part of this training, Queen Lauren shows Snow White her secret, magic mirror, that the queen uses very carefully to watch over the people and to know when to offer aid or assistance to those who need it.  Lord Thomas threatens the kingdom, and Queen Lauren sends Snow White into hiding in the care of the huntsgirl, Tanya and Nathan, one of the queen’s guardsmen.  Snow White and Tanya had always been friends, but having so much time alone in the woods, allows them to develop a more intimate relationship.  Once the threat of Lord Thomas ends, Snow White, Tanya, and Nathan return, and Snow White begins to come to terms with being coupled with Tanya publicly. 

“Andersen’s ‘The Little Mermaid’:  The Wicked Woman Version” is a musing on the misogynistic elements in Andersen’s story.

“The Little Mermaid:  The Sacred Version” is a retelling of Andersen’s story where the little mermaid, Serina, falls in love with a human boy, Brendan, and he falls in love with her.  Brendan is fascinated by the peaceful ways of the merpeople, and he asks Serina if he can be transformed and come live with her and her people.  Serina goes to the sea witch, Circe, for help, and Brendan is transformed and adopted by the merpeople.

“The Frog and the Transgender Prince” is about Stephanie, the spoiled, awkward princess.  She is given a golden ball on her sixteenth birthday which she loses in a pond, and a frog retrieves for her.  She breaks her word and leaves the frog.  The frog finds her at the castle and demands to be her companion.  Slowly, Stephanie begins to talk to the frog and comes to know it as it comes to know her.  Finally, Stephanie realizes that the frog must be under and enchantment, and she hopes the frog will transform into a prince, but the frog reveals that it is a she, so Stephanie chooses to be a prince to be with the frog princess.  Thus the two are transformed into Stephen, the transgender prince, and Julia, the princess.  (“The Frog and the Transgender Prince” has been published by Writing in a Woman’s Voice 2017.)

“Hansel and Gregory” is the story first of Hansel’s and Gregory’s parents’ sudden love and then of the developing love between the two boys.  Fearing rejection or condemnation, the boys run away into the forest.  In the forest, they encounter Herim’s cottage/palace, a refuge from the sexually repressed world they know.  Hansel and Gregory gain confidence with each other in Herim’s palace, but then their parents arrive searching for them.  The two boys are surprised that their parents know Herim and have been to the palace before, but they are relieved that their parents don’t care about their sexual orientation but only the happiness of the boys.

“Lenora’s Prince” is about Princess Lenora and her relationship with a boy, Achilles, who is presented to her father as a slave.  A hostile lord threatens the royal family and the kingdom, and Achilles is set as one of Princess Lenora’s guards.  The two have a strong attraction for each other, and in the conflict, they save each other.

In “Jane’s Knight,” Princess Jane’s party is attacked and her men killed.  Sir Christopher and his page find her, and Christopher comfort’s Jane and takes her back to the castle.  An intimacy develops between Jane and Christopher.  Lady Isabella, Jane’s mother, questions Christopher about his intentions, and Christopher, being a kind and worthy boy, gains Lady Isabella’s approval. 

“P Pan and Beyondland” is a retelling of the Peter Pan story.  P Pan is one of the Polly Pandora who offers sanctuary on Beyondland to children of the world who are threatened by physical or psychological abuse.  P Pan is a non-binary identifying manifestation of the Polly Pandora.  Krystal and Kyle are a pair of twins who have been quietly questioning their gender identities.  At school, a pair of boys, Harry and Jamie, are discovered kissing.  The boys are publicly humiliated and beaten up.  This incident prompts Krystal and Kyle to take P Pan up on an offer of sanctuary on Beyondland.  Krystal, Kyle, and Jamie go with P Pan to Beyondland, where they are accepted and where the children take on different gender identities than the ones they were allowed to in the “normal” world.  Krystal becomes Kay, Kyle becomes Kyla, and Jamie openly identifies as gay.

“The Mirror” is a retelling of the Snow White story.  In the story, the Snow White/Queen story is a continuing cycle trapping young women as Snow Whites and condemning them to become corrupted Queens who victimize young Snow Whites in a never ending cycle.  One Queen remembers a mid-wife telling her that the curse can be broken by a Snow White and a Queen together, and she manages to sacrifice herself in an act of love to allow the Snow White to also embrace an act of love to free them all from the poisonous cycle.  The mirror, long the instrument of curse, in the new story, becomes an instrument of aid. 

“Anton, the Steadfast Soldier, and Tatiana, the Steadfast Dancer” is the story of the Steadfast Soldier and the Dancer after he has returned to the Nursery from his adventures in the wide world (the encounters with the street children, the rat, and the fish).  The Nursery Fairy grants him wishes, and the Dancer and the Steadfast soldier are brought to life to make their way together in the wide world.  (“Anton, the Steadfast Soldier, and Tatiana, the Steadfast Dancer” has been published in Pennsylvania Literary Journal Fall 2017.)






Rainbow Tales has been published by JMS Books (a small queer press) as an eBook in 2020 and as paperback in 2022. Stories include "Beau and the Beast," "Snow White and the Huntsgirl," "The Frog and the Transgender Prince," "Hansel and Gregory," "P Pan and Beyondland," "The Huntsman and the Beast," "Snow White and Sleeping Beauty," "The Troll Council and the Intersex Savior," "Snow White's Father and the Transgender Queen," "Wendy and Polly Pan," "Baba Yaga, the Intersex Witch," and Curiouser and Curiouser."








Selected summaries are listed below.

“The Huntsman and the Beast” is the story of Snow White’s huntsman, Anthony, after he has freed and warned Snow White to hide from the evil queen.  Anthony wanders onto the grounds of the Beast, Christopher, and the two become companions.  One evening, the magic mirror summons Christopher and reveals to the two boys a vision of the evil queen and three wolves who will go after Snow White and Sleeping Beauty.  The boys go to help the girls, between the boys, the girls, the fairy protectors of the girls, and dragon, the evil queen and her wolf-men are destroyed, and Christopher is transformed back into a human boy.  Christopher and Anthony part from the girls, but the couples promise to visit each other in the future.

“Snow White and Sleeping Beauty” is “The Huntsman and the Beast” story with a focus on Snow White and Aurora, Sleeping Beauty, who become companions and then lovers.

“Snow White’s Father and the Transgender Queen” is a Snow White variation.  After Snow White’s mother dies, the king goes abroad.  When he returns he brings with him Princess Eriana, her daughter, Princess Tanya, and her son, Prince Hakim.  Snow White grows to be very close to Tanya in a sisterly way and to Hakim in a romantic way.  During events leading up to the wedding of the king to Princess Eriana, Snow White discovers that Princess Eirana is a man who dresses like a woman and acts like a woman because his gender identify is female and always had been.  Wanting happiness for her father, Snow White is glad for him and the princess, and at the end of the wedding ceremony, the engagement of Snow White and Hakim is announced.

“Wendy and Polly Pan” is a variation of Peter Pan.  James Hook is cruel and rich boy who pursues marriage to Wendy.  Though Wendy wishes anything but, her parents are keen on the match.  Desperate Wendy cries for help, and Polly Pandora hears her and offers to take her to Everland where she would have to work but where she would be free from a forced marriage.  Wendy hesitates at first, but with James’ continued pursuit, she runs away to Everland where she finds Polly Pan in committed and content relationship with a girl named Diana.  Wendy meets others that Polly Pan has saved and hears their stories, and she contemplates how the world might change if girls and women rejected boys and men for more nurturing relationships with other girls and women.

“The Troll Council and the Intersex Savior” is the story of a child who is born intersex in society struggling between the old ways of the mid-wives who tell tales of the Great Goddess, the Maiden, the Mother, and the Crone, and the Trolls and the Church Fathers who fear the ways of the mid-wives and try to label them as witches.  The child is named Rose, and it is through Rose (who becomes Ray, a non-binary identification) that the Trolls are brought back to the people of the Lower Valley and that the people chose the old ways and cast out the Church Fathers. 


Beyond the Witch is an unpublished collection of alternative fairy tales; the stories include “Karen and the Red Shoes:  The Wicked Woman Version,” Karen and the Red Shoes:  The Sacred Version,” “Cinderella Rejected,” "Not So Happily Ever After," "Elf Wife," “No Mercy in the Garden,” “A Different Creation,” “Lilith and Adam,” "Eve and Adam," "Rose Red," "The Step-Sister's Happy Ending," "The Princess' Consort," "Jack, the Villain-Hero," "Lily and the Unicorn," “The Fox and the Rose,” "The Land of Play," "The Miller's Daughter," "The Giving Prince," "Little Red and Robin," "The Jersey Devil," and "Hansel and Gretel at the Castle" with others added as they are written.

Selected summaries are listed below.

“Karen and the Red Shoes:  The Wicked Woman Version” is a musing on misogynistic elements in Hans Christian Andersen’s original story. 

“Karen and the Red Shoes:  The Sacred Version” is a retelling of Andersen’s story where female sexuality is celebrated and valued.

“Cinderella Rejected” is another Cinderella story.  Prince William’s father holds a series of balls so that his son might meet a girl of his liking.  He is at first bewitched by the enchantment surrounding Cinderella, but then he grow to be suspicious of it and questions it.  He finds that Cinderella is beautiful but simple.  He realizes that he has much more in common with Constance, the daughter of one of his father’s advisers.  Before the end of the balls, the engagement of Prince William to Constance is announced.  

“No Mercy in the Garden” is retelling of Genesis II and III from Eve’s perspective where she finds her status in relation to Adam unfair and the punishment handed to them unduly harsher toward her.  

“A Different Creation” is a retelling of Genesis I where woman and man are made in God’s image, there is no garden and hence no expulsion from the garden, they are told to be fruitful and multiple, and their creation is considered good.  In this creation, humans are to strive to be the best that they can be, and it is a harmonious and loving existence most of the time. 

 “Lilith and Adam” is a retelling of Genesis I where woman and man are created in God’s image as equals, and everything is good.  At first life is harmonious between Lilith and Adam, but Adam thinks more of himself and his pleasure.  He rapes Lilith fixated on his own pleasure and his power over her.  For this betrayal, Lilith leaves him, and Adam discovers her disappearance too late to stop it. 

“Not So Happily Everafter” is the story of Cinderella after the wedding when Cinderella realizes that she has traded one kind of slavery for another.  Charming is brutal and insensitive.  He uses her sexually and lets his father uses her as well.  Pregnant with her second child, Cinderella can’t take it anymore, so she drowns herself.

“The Fox and the Rose” is about Running Fox and his clan going to the falls where his clan would meet up with others for the salmon harvest.  At the falls, Running Fox meets Rose, and the two of them fall in love.  They pledge themselves to each other and as their traditions dictate, Running Fox will leave his family and join Rose’s.

“Elf Wife” is about Galan, the elf prince, who stumbles through a hidden passage to the human world and meets a human girl, Magdalena.  They fall in love, and Galan finally confesses his journey’s to the human world and his love for Magdalena to his stunned parents.  Magdalena comes to life in the elf world as Galan’s partner, but she thinks of herself as his wife.

“Rose Red” is a retelling of the “Snow White and Rose Red” story focusing on Rose Red.  Rose Red’s people have ruined their world, and Rose has joined a band of people fleeing.  Rose is tory-touched and feels a connection to “her bear,” if only in her dream.  The band finds a passage to another world, and through the Yggdrasil Tree, Rose connects them to the Bear People, and her bear, Bruin.  The joining of Rose’s people and the Bear people has great potential, but there is tension between the two people’s.  Bronwyn, the child of Rose and Bruin, makes both sets of people see the possibilities of love and peace.

“The Step-Sister’s Happy Ending” is the story of Marlene, Ashputtle’s step-sister.  At first, she is miserable as blind and cripple on the family farm, but Marlene finds comfort and meaning in working about the farm with the help of the white doves and some dogs that are adopted by the family.  She becomes reacquainted with the neighbor’s son, Lukas, and the two decide to make a happy ending for themselves. 


Other Stories include “Ghost Wife” and “Grave Angel” both published in Tales from the Grave 2015.


Stalked is an unpublished fan-fiction version of Twilight.  In Stalked, Bella, right after the victory over Victoria’s new born army (at the end of Meyer's third book), realizes that both Edward and Jacob are manipulating her and stalking her.  With this realization, she makes a plan to file restraining orders on both Edward and Jacob and to move to Florida to get away from them and rebuild her life.


First Loves is an unpublished novel and is the story of Julia Gallagher’s sexual development through her relationships with a range of lovers, Ricky Bradley, Beau Jennings, and Ryan Williams.  She is seventeen when she falls in love for the first time with Ricky Bradley, a fellow junior at her high school.  Their sexual relations escalate from kissing to intercourse over a period of time.  Their sexual activity is described explicitly from Julia perspective.  I have tried to make it realistic in terms of a girl’s or woman’s sexual arousal needs and her experiences of sexual pleasure.  Her sexual arousal and pleasure are different from those of the boys’ arousal and pleasure, and the boys enjoy getting her aroused and giving her pleasure—her arousal and pleasure enhances their own.  Julia is an evolving human being not just in terms of her sexuality but also in terms of her emotional and intellectual growth.  She learns quite a bit through her relationship with Ricky, but after that ends, Julia goes to college at Brown University and eventually begins dating Beau.  They have a very intense relationship, and they both learn more about sex and sexuality in their time together.  The very intensity of Julia and Beau’s relationship breaks it apart.  Beau asks Julia to marry him, and knowing that they are nineteen and twenty, Julia can’t and won’t consent to the marriage.  At the close of the novel, Ryan Williams attracts Julia’s attention, and they kiss, and Julia agrees to start seeing him—expecting this new relationship to be another opportunity to learn about sex and sexuality for both of them. 



About Kathleen

Kathleen is an Associate Professor at Community College of Philadelphia, an author, a mother to three beautiful girls, and a wife for over 25 years.