The fairy tale of The Spider and the Fly tells the story of Jasmine, Princess of the Flies, who while playing with her friends flies is entangled in a spider’s web. To be freed Jasmine promises to the Spider a lot of insects’ snacks and a big Bluebottle. Her mother, the Queen, holds the promise by sending the insects’ snacks with a swarm of flies and his champion Spartacus, the Bluebottle. To fulfill the promise of the Princess, Spartacus ends up diving into the web and getting caught into its threads. Immediately after Spartacus frees himself destroying the web and leaving the spider with egg on his face.
The Spider and the Fly is one of the five chapters of the book “GRANDPA’S FAIRY TALES” written and illustrated by me and my grandchildren. The book is available online at Youcanprint, Amazon and, among other international bookstores, at Mondadori, Hoepli, Feltrinelli, ibs.it. The editing of the tale on WordPress is different from that of the published book .
The origin of Grandpa’s Fairy Tales dates back to Christmas 2016 when I published a collection of ten fairy tales dedicated to my grandchildren. The collection, titled “Dieci nuove favole illustrate”, was written in Italian as at that time the majority of my grandchildren were not able to read English. At the beginning of the year 2020 I published Grandpa’s Fairy Tales, basically the English edition of the five fairy tales of the collection that are devoted to animals who talk, walk and run on the ground. A second book titled “The Magnificent Fairy Tales” that deals with animals who talk and fly in the sky or swim in the sea, will be published in the next months. Grandpa’s Fairy Tales is the outcome of the cooperation between my grandchildren and me. As I was writing the draft of the book, I thought that it would have been instructive and enjoyable to hold a competition among my grandchildren aimed at reviewing the content of the draft. As today they are studying at International Schools, they were able to review the chapters utilizing a modern wording. The winner of each single chapter’s review received a prize. Moreover, additional prizes were awarded for the selection of the best cover’s images and the best proposal for the book’s title.
The Spider and the Fly
Characters: The Spider, The Fly: Jasmine, The Spider web, The Queen of the Flies: Morgana, The Bluebottle: Spartacus, The Chamberlain.
Once upon a time there was a Spider that built a beautiful web among the branches of an oak tree. A Fly who was playing hide and seek with her friends got trapped in the web. The Spider reached the Fly very quickly and while he was wrapping her with his saliva (the same one he uses to weave his web) the Fly begged him:
<My dear Spider, please let me free. What did I do to end up embalmed as a mummy?>
<Fly, my dear, I can’t. I am an insect hunter and with them I feed myself>.
<Please be kind to me, dear Spider. If you let me go, I promise you that you will receive in return a beautiful, big and fat Bluebottle that you’ll like much more than a common Fly like me>.
<How will you give it to me?>
<Don’t worry, you will see, I’ll keep my promise. I am Jasmine, daughter of Morgana, the Queen of the Flies. In addition, while you wait for the Bluebottle, as a gift you will receive delicious snacks of insects from my friends Flies >.
<Ok, Princess Jasmine, you have convinced me, but remember your promise>.
The Spider released the Fly who, after thanking him very much, took off very quickly to join her friends Flies whom she was playing with.
All together they went to the Castle of the Flies to tell the Queen about Jasmine adventure.
<Dear mother, I was terrified. I had never been trapped in a Spider web. The web sticky threads denied my movements and, while I was trying to free myself, came the Spider, a big, furry and horrible monster with eight legs!>
<How did you manage to save yourself, my dear>, the Queen asked with a curious voice.
<I begged him to save my life, however, to achieve this I had to promise him two things: a lot of insects’ snacks and, unfortunately, a Bluebottle!>.
<As far the snacks, we have no problems, we will send them to him right now”, said the Queen.
<Could you deal with it, Chamberlain?>.
<Immediately, my Queen!>, the Chamberlain replied.
<Finding the Bluebottle is more complex. I may ask Spartacus, who is my Champion in the tournaments, to make a blitz. Call Spartacus right now.
Spartacus was brought to the presence of the Queen who turned to him and said: <Spartacus, my Champion, we all know your courage and the devotion you have for your Queen. We need to keep the word given by Princess Jasmine. In exchange for being devoured by an ugly Spider she had to promise a Bluebottle>. The Queen added: <Only you can keep the word given by Princess Jasmine and save your life>
<At your command, my Queen, with all my heart>
<Go, Spartacus, my loyal Champion, and return winner!>
Meanwhile a swarm of Flies left the Castle with many insects’ snacks that were dropped onto the web. Promptly the Spider ate some of them and wrapped the others with his saliva for a future meal. Hidden behind a leaf, enjoying a delicious snack, the Spider thought to himself: <How lucky am I! I started my day in the best way. How tasty are these insects’ snacks! And soon I will also have a beautiful Bluebottle, big and fat.
After saying that a second swarm of Flies arrived over the web accompanying Spartacus like the ships escort an aircraft carrier. The swarm headed to the web when, suddenly, changed its direction except Spartacus who ended up diving into the web and got caught into its sticky threads. The Spider rushed quickly to wrap the big catch at the same time as Spartacus could squirm and escape by opening a large tear in the web.
Spartacus, once free, flying over the web that was destroyed by his escape, turned to the Spider telling him: <As you can see, dear Spider, the first lesson is “Grasp all, lose all”; the second “Pride goes before fall”>.