The Ugly Duckling

Here is my version of the fairy tale ‘The Ugly  Duckling’ by Hans Christian Anderson. I hope you like reading it! 🐣🐥🐤

From Ugly to Beautiful

       Once upon a time, there was a very large pond, where multitudes of ducks nested each year. Not too long ago, one of the mother duck’s eggs was just starting to hatch. The first baby emerged out of his shell. “A very pretty shade of dirty yellow,” remarked the duckling’s mother. Once each duckling hatched, its mother gave it a compliment. All except the last one. The last hatchling looked very hideous for a duck. He was stained with gray feathers and had enormous feet. He was such a misfit! “I should probably leave him behind,” his mother contemplated, while the other ducklings were making fun of the ugly one. “The other ducks are so beautiful, but this one… I’ll feel deeply embarrassed and humiliated anytime someone sees him with me! I will lose my position of importance in the Society of Conspicuous Ducks, because one of my children looks like that!” And that was that. When the duckling’s mother daintily hopped into the water, all of her ducklings followed eagerly. The ugly duckling followed her, as well. His mother was clearly annoyed. She gently and lovingly lowered her back for her ducklings to climb onto. The ugly duckling hopped on, too. His mother deliberately flicked him off with her tail, and the duckling tumbled into the water with a splash. The duckling’s mother swam off proudly with her head held high, not regretting what she just had done. The baby fowl swam off slowly, feeling abandoned. His family had just rejected him.

      The next morning, the ugly duckling decided since his old family left him, he would have to find a new one. The baby duck waddled over to the water to get a drink before he set off on his expedition. As soon as he was hydrated, the duckling plopped down into the water and swam off excitedly. He was going to find a family! After a few minutes of swimming, which seemed like hours, the duckling became tired, so he slowed down. After a few more minutes of swimming, the hatchling realized he was lost. He peeked through the reeds, and what he saw made his heart leap for joy! For there, in the water, was a duck! Well, it was actually a decoy, but the ugly duckling didn’t know that. ‘Maybe we could be friends!’ thought the ugly duckling. He paddled through the water and hugged the decoy affectionately. The ugly duckling hopped onto the decoy’s back, so he could take a ride. The plastic duck started rocking, back and forth, back and forth. The little duckling climbed higher onto the duck’s head. The duck was rocking even harder now, so hard that the ugly duckling toppled off the decoy’s bill and plunged into the water. The brightly painted fake duck pecked the ugly duckling on the head anytime he rocked forward. The decoy now seemed like an evil monster, coming after him. The infant dodged the decoy’s bill, but barely missed it. The duckling swam off just as he got jabbed in the shoulder by the evil plastic duck. The hatchling glanced over his shoulder at the scratch the decoy made. It was bleeding, but he didn’t care. He just had to find a family!

     After swimming as far away as possible from the decoy, the ugly duckling hopped onto the bank of the pond and waddled off until he found a hollow log that he could was tall enough to reach. The ugly duckling climbed on top of the log, and nearly fell off. When he was balanced, the ugly duckling peered into the murky water to figure out what he looked like. After all, that was why his family rejected him, because he appeared different from the others. The ugly duckling saw his reflection, and that made him start crying. What his brothers and sisters teased him about was true. He was dirty gray. He did have huge feet. And worst of all, he had a pinkish-gray bill instead of a shiny black one! The ugly duckling burst into tears. Honking loudly, he did not notice a mother and father trumpeter swan swimming by gracefully while their cygnets followed in a single-file line. Hearing the noise, the baby swans swam over to the log, and saw the ugly duckling crying. “What’s wrong?” The cygnets gathered around the baby fowl and stared at him with a confused look on their faces. The ugly duckling finally looked up, and what he discovered completely and totally petrified him. Were there more ducks just like him, or was he dreaming? Was this his family, or not? More and more questions raced through the ugly duckling’s mind as he stared back blank-faced at the baby swans. Because he thought this was the swans’ pond, the hatchling concluded he should leave. The ugly duckling started to shuffle off, but as soon as he started to, three of the four cygnets jumped onto the log and pulled him into the water with them. The ugly duckling realized he wasn’t dreaming; this was his family! He still was dirty gray, but all of his siblings were the same color. He still had huge feet, but so did everyone else in his family. And best of all, the ugly duckling wasn’t a duckling at all! He was a trumpeter swan, who had a family!

Moral: You may be told countless times that you are unimportant and that you are a nobody, but in God’s eyes, you are his precious creation, and nothing will ever change that.

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