And Once And Once And Once

Once upon a time, there lived a magical fairy. How magical was she? She was so magical that she didn’t have to put up with being trapped in a story, and she left.

Once upon a time there was a mighty Giant so tall that his head pierced the very clouds. The clouds, in response, grew terrified, and left the Kingdom forever. All perished in the resulting drought.

Once upon a time there was a Knight so gallant and bold that he was beloved by all the people. The King and Queen, sensing a potential political rival, sent him off to wars in the farthest region of the World, and he was never seen again.

Once there was a narrator who really didn’t want to tell fairytales, and it might have showed.

Once there was a Queen so wicked that she had storytellers tell stories about how Wicked a Queen her mother was. Now there was someone who could have used some Royal Therapy.

Once there was a Hunger that had no name, no shape, no thing but a great mouth, a vast appetite, and an ability to digest things despite apparently having almost none of the body parts necessary for life processes. It was weird, and yet, it was invited everywhere by those who believed that it was the inevitable shape of a creature of this sad world.

Once upon a time, someone invented naps, and you should find that person, and feed them pie.

Once there was a way to get back home again; once, but no longer.

Once there was a free taco day, and there was great, if temporary, happiness in the land.

Once upon a time, there were cats, and that was nice, but then they were all devoured. BY OTHER CATS. We have no words.

Once there was an Ogre who thought he looked great in a black strapless dress, one which was covered with sequins, and he did, and everyone told him so, and his story wasn’t very exciting, but sometimes a lack of excitement is better than unholy terror.

Once I cried out to the cold and pitiless fates, “ISN’T THIS ENOUGH?” But it was not enough, and they never did answer.

Once there was a Magic Mirror which kept telling me I was the prettiest in all the land. I knew that I was not, that the mirror lied to me, trying tell me what I wanted to hear. But I kept telling the mirror I wanted the truth, and the mirror kept thinking I was lying, until one day I removed the Magic Mirror from my home and set it in a warehouse, across from another mirror, and all day long, it tells itself that it is pretty, fearing its own wrath, and I suspect it lives an exhausting and frightening life, but the shiny screen of lies is no longer in my life, and now I am free to go and find out what I really look like, and even if I am ugly beyond belief, I am unchained from the babble and the lies, and that, o my darling friends, o my unworthy foes,

that is a very happy beginning.

~Jeff Mach


My name is Jeff Mach (“Dark Lord” is optional) and I build communities, put on events, and make stories come into being. I also tweet a lot over @darklordjournal.



Jeff Mach Written by:

Jeff Mach is an author, playwright, event creator, and certified Villain. You can always pick up his bestselling first novel, "There and NEVER, EVER BACK AGAIN"—or, indeed, his increasingly large selection of other peculiar books. If you'd like to talk more to Jeff, or if you're simply a Monstrous Creature yourself, stop by @darklordjournal on Twitter, or The Dark Lord Journal on Facebook.