Jean-David Moisan

By the light of the moon

Once upon a time, a very, very long time ago, in a small village very, very far from here, there was a young man who had just left his parents to start his own life.

He had just bid farewell to his family members, and according to the customs of the time, he had received four beautiful little coins. He didn't know much, for all he had done since his early childhood was to chop wood and sell it. His name was Yvan Dubois.

He headed towards the office of a certain Mr. Lypo Thèque, the man who sold all the houses that were for sale, with a confident and firm stride since he had been referred to him when he left his parents. He walked with a confident and firm step because the office would be closed for two weeks due to the Christmas holidays that would begin ten minutes later. Upon entering, as everyone was accustomed to doing, he wiped his muddy shoes. Mr. Thèque greeted his client:

  • Good morning, what can I do for you?
  • I would like to buy a house that would suit me at a not too expensive price, Yvan replied.
  • I have a nice one that would suit you; it costs one hundred and ten dollars.
  • Don't you have one... for less than four dollars?
  • Let me check... I do have one for two dollars, but...
  • That's fine! I'll take it! Yvan said, cutting him off.

In a matter of seconds, Yvan Dubois had arrived at his new house and was ready to sleep. Unfortunately, there was too much croaking for him to fall asleep because he lived near a marsh. During the night, he heard noises coming from the kitchen cupboard, and he went to see what was inside. He thought maybe it contained a mischievous elf because he had seen many of them tending to the frogs in the garden. To his great surprise, he found a witch who was at least 500 years old. There was even a song that was written shortly after this story, and its chorus described her quite well:

She had warts so large, a painful view,
Blocking her sight, her world askew,
And a pair of spiders, quite a peculiar crew,
In her nose they dwelled, a secret they knew.

If I were to provide more details than the song does, you would have endless nightmares.

With her old, raspy voice, she said to him:

  • Now that you have come to disturb me in my lair, you must bring me the moon before Christmas Eve, or else I will turn you into a frog like all the others. If you succeed, you can keep the house.

Yvan was on the verge of fainting in front of the witch, but he composed himself and rushed out of the house in no time, heading towards Mr. Thèque's office. However, he wasn't there and had left a note on the door that read:

Dear Yvan, times are tough, and I tried to warn you, but you didn't listen. Now it's too late, you're guilty of your haste. Do what she told you.
Postscript: I am on vacation in Hawaii.

Yvan didn't know what to think. The first idea that crossed his mind was to get himself catapulted to the moon. So, he went to the circus and met Mr. Yvon Lavallé, the lion tamer, but he scolded him and told him that the circus was closed and wouldn't reopen until New Year's Day.

Yvan was completely distraught upon hearing those words, and he rushed to the nearest park. He didn't want to be turned into a frog and truly didn't know how to give the moon to the wicked witch. The next day, Christmas would already be here, and at midnight, it would be too late...

Yvan was in tears. It wasn't something he was used to, but when he cried, he cried really hard. Eventually, he fell asleep on a bench.

The next morning, before the sun had risen, a voice called out to him from the sky and woke him up: "Hey, you, what are you doing lying there?" When he finally opened his eyes, he realized the voice was coming from the tall tree next to him, specifically from a climbing elf named Lavoix Lacté. Yvan eventually told him his whole story, and his new elf friend replied:

  • Go fetch me a large black pot, I'll explain why later.

In a minute, Yvan went to fetch one. The elf took it and filled it with magical water from the lake of the sirens. This water could not evaporate. He said to Yvan:

  • Tonight, when the moonlight appears, you'll show the pot filled with water to the witch, and when she looks inside, she will see the moon.

  • Thank you so much, Yvan said to the elf with a big smile on his face

The days before Christmas are not normally very, very long, and the moonlight soon arrived. Immediately, he went to his home and showed the pot filled with water to the witch. As soon as she saw the moon in the pot, her face became very joyful, and she transformed into a beautiful princess. The house turned into a majestic castle, and all the frogs in the marsh, without exception, turned back into human beings.

DALL-E 3 render

The old witch, now a young princess, told him that an evil fairy had cursed her: she had become a wicked witch, and her castle had turned into an old house. The fairy had told her that only if someone brought her the moon, the spell would be broken. But she couldn't say anything until she returned to normal, or else she would remain a witch forever.

And the following evening, during a beautiful sunset, Yvan and the princess got married. They became the king and queen, lived happily, and had many children...

...until the day when one of their daughters pricked her finger on a spindle and fell into such a deep slumber that...