In the evenings, Cinderella sat by the fire.
In the evenings, Cinderella sat by the fire.
©2007 Publications International, Ltd.

Once upon a time, there was a young girl named Cinderella. She was as sweet as sugar, as kind as a mother's kiss, and as pretty as the sun setting in the sky. She had a very mean stepmother and two stepsisters who made her life miserable. They all treated Cinderella like a servant.

"Scrub the floors," one would order.

"When you're done, clean these dishes," the other would say.

"Hurry up!" they yelled together.

Cinderella scrubbed, cleaned, and ironed while her stepmother and stepsisters spent their days preening in front of the mirror.

After Cinderella had spent all day cleaning and ironing, she would spend the evening alone in front of the warm fire. This was her favorite part of the day. She dreamed of what her life would be like if she were a princess.

Every day was the same for Cinderella. In the ­morning, she woke up early and made her stepmother and stepsisters breakfast.

"My tea is a little too warm," one stepsister said.

"My tea is a little too cool," the other would say.

After they were done eating their breakfast, the stepsisters would sit in front of the mirror and argue about who was more beautiful. Cinderella would spend the rest of the day sewing and ironing. But her heart was so pure, she did not even mind. It gave her time to dream about the handsome prince.

Cinderella's stepmother hoped that one of her daughters would someday marry the prince. Once they saw the prince in the royal parade. The stepsisters were sure he smiled at them.

"He looked at me," the short one said happily.

"He looked at me," the tall one said.

"You are both beautiful," their mother said to them. They all agreed. Cinderella secretly thought the prince smiled at her.

One day, something very exciting arrived. It was an invitation to the prince's fancy ball! "You, my darling daughters, are going to the prince's ball!" Cinderella's stepmother exclaimed.

"What will I wear?" one stepsister cried.

"I hope I can dance with the prince," the other said dreamily.

As the night of the ball drew closer and closer, Cinderella had more and more work to do.

"Cinderella, hem my favorite pink dress," one yelled.

"Cinderella, get my favorite blue shoes," the other yelled.

Cinderella sewed and ironed for days. But she was not allowed to go to the ball herself. She was only a servant. Besides, she did not have a ball gown.

Go to the next page to find out what happened next.

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