Beatirce had to think fast on her feet. The Gatekeeper was demanding a reason why he should let her enter, even though the torrential rain seemed to be the obvious answer.
“I’m a princess,” she said coldly, mustering a stare that demanded attention.
Half an hour later, her ruse had her inside the gates and heading to the castle. The king had apparently set aside a special room for her to sleep in.
Once inside, she was lead to a tower and asked politely to climb a long staircase. After five minutes of climbing, she reached a stone platform with a single door. A servant swung it open and motioned her in. The room was well lit with candles and from their glow Beatrice could see that the only piece of furniture was a towering four-post bed.
The canopy of the bed was close to the ceiling and stacked, almost to the same height, was a huge pile of mattresses and feather beds.
Staring aghast, she counted twenty of each.
“This, your lady, will be your sleeping quarters.”
“You mean I am supposed to sleep on that? I don’t think so. How would I even get up there?”
“There’s a ladder my lady,” the servant explained, ” on the far side of the bed.”
“Is this any way to treat a princess,” she said, remembering her character.
“It is by the Queen’s orders,” replied the servant, shutting the door.
Beatrice stared back at the mattress stack and whispered under her breath, “Are they serious?”
Early the next morning there was a loud banging at the door. Beatrice climbed down from the mountain of beds and opened it, still half asleep.
As she did, a small crowd of royal dignitaries burst into the room, staring intently at her.
The Queen pushed to the front of the pack and addressed Beatrice: “So young lady, how was your sleep?” The others in the room leaned closer, as if Beatrice’s answer would change their lives forever.
“Not so great, now that you ask,” replied Beatrice.
A cheer erupted from the crowd at the back of the room, but was quickly hushed by the Queen. “And why would that be.”
Beatrice stared at the tower she had slept on and thought for moment. “Well, you may have stacked twenty mattresses and twenty feather beds on top of one another, but I don’t see a single Simmons in the bunch.”