The Sylph Princess' Dress:
The dress was made for a princess of one of the cloud kingdoms in the sky. It was the princess’ birthday, and the king and queen had called upon fine tailors and crafters from the elven and fairy worlds to make the dress for her. The dress was beautifully made, airy like the autumn mists and light like the clouds the sylph princess knew so well. Pink ribbons hung like carnations around the collar of the dress, matching the dainty embroidered threads at the hem. Truly, it was a dress that was fit in every way for its royal recipient.
On the morning of the princess’ birthday, the king sent out several deliverymen to claim and deliver the presents from the various crafters they had been ordered from. Three of these deliverymen had been tasked with bringing the dress. They received it from an elven tailor named Pokegreen, who had been the main contributor to and supervisor of the dress’ creation. The deliverymen took one look at the dress and marveled at just how beautiful it was and how perfect it was for their princess, and thought admiringly of how lovely she would look when she wore it. They gave the tailor a bag of gold pieces, had the dress packaged in a golden box, and set off for their kingdom in the sky.
But in a moment of horrible luck, the three deliverymen were caught up in a storm. As they were violently tossed and turned and shaken, the three of them held on to the dress box as if their lives depended on it, so that the dress was tossed around with them. But despite all their efforts to hold on to it, a mighty gust of wind was able to yank the package from their hands. It was blown away, and though they spent the rest of the morning’s hours searching for it, they could not find it. They were forced to return to the palace without the dress, and though the king and queen were very disappointed with the loss of the hard work, and very sorry for their daughter who would be getting one less birthday present, they were too kind to place any blame on the deliverymen. Nobody could stop a storm, after all.
The golden box landed in the tidy front yard of a cottage, where it was soon discovered by the young woman who lived there. When she opened the box and discovered the dress, she let out a joyful cry and hugged it to her chest. “Oh, it’s the most beautiful dress I’ve ever seen!” she exclaimed. “Oh, if it doesn’t belong to anybody, I would just love to keep it! But who could it belong to? It seems to have appeared out of nowhere. I will keep it until someone else claims it.” The woman, whose name was Iris, was overjoyed to have the dress, even if it was only temporary. She pulled her black hair up, held it in place with a pearl clasp, and slipped the dress on.
Iris made up her mind then and there that the dress was the very best she’d ever owned; it was the prettiest, the lightest, the most well made, and made her feel better than anything she’d ever worn had made her feel. And though she had nowhere to go today, she decided that she would go out into the town square just to show the dress off to anybody who was willing to look. She put on tights and pink shoes and walked down to the town square.
As it turned out, just about everybody she passed by was willing to look; it was not only the prettiest dress Iris had ever seen, it was the prettiest dress anybody in town had ever seen. They could not have known that it had been made for a princess, but what they did know was that it was something special. The women and girls wanted one just like it for themselves, yet somehow knew that there were no others like it. The men bowed their heads to Iris and paid her pretty compliments: “Who is the beautiful young princess in town today?” “Why, I do believe she must be a fairy from another world.” “Are you a fallen angel, or is it just your dress?”
Iris took every compliment with ceaseless modesty, and at the end of the day she thought that the dress must be magical, or perhaps a gift from a fairy. Nobody ever came to claim it, so Iris kept the dress, and from then on she was rarely seen without it. The sylph princess received many other dresses over the course of the year, and was very happy with them, and never had any reason to think of this one lost dress. Nobody from the palace bothered to look for it. The dress became Iris’ signature outfit, and in her small town it became what she was known for.
Neither Iris nor anybody who knew her ever found out that her iconic dress had been made for a princess.