Don't worry, stranger. Your dire predicament is nothing compared to the curse I bear every single day.
|—Prince James, The Exiled Prince|
Prince James, also known 'The Frog Prince', was a major character and antagonist in the second Dark Parables game, The Exiled Prince. His history also plays a part in leading up to the events of Rise of the Snow Queen.
James is based on the cursed prince from the German fairy tale The Frog Prince, but he also fills roles of many princes from other tales.
Appearance and Personality Edit
The prince appeared through much of The Exiled Prince as a hooded figure. He had a tan complexion, dark brownish-red hair, and blue eyes. When he removed his hood, he revealed himself to be a handsome young man with sad eyes.
James was a romantic, even despite his curses. His own living space had fallen into horrible disrepair, while the gardens and shrines he tended to in the memory of his beloved wives were all impeccably cared for. He longed to be reunited with his first true love, Princess Ivy. His many years of exile and grief over his lost loves had hardened his heart considerably. He had no problem turning animals and even people into frogs, if it meant one day finding a cure for the curses that plagued him.
Although much of James' early life is unknown, what is certain is that he was born a Prince of the Forest Kingdom and was the elder brother of the Unnamed Prince who failed to wake Briar Rose from her eternal slumber. Cursed to take the form of a frog by an unnamed witch (possibly the Royal Advisor), Prince James met Princess Ivy in Germany after her parents sent her away to avoid the Evil Godmother's curse. Ivy gave up her immortality to transform the prince back into a man with her kiss. James and Ivy married and would have many happy years together, eventually producing a daughter. This daughter would eventually marry and give James a grandchild, his bloodline continuing to the present day with Princess Brigid.
But when Ivy kissed James to break his curse, she unintentionally passed on her Guardian immortality to him. So while Ivy aged, James stayed as young as ever. Eventually Ivy passed away and the Prince fell into anguish, returning to his frog form, cursed to repeat the cycle eternally.
After she saved him from being eaten by a snake, Prince James married Cinderella Agnes Koch and were happy for many years until her death. A frog once more, James then met the mermaid Princess Naida from Prasino. In gratitude for her transforming kiss and the love they shared, James searched the world over to find the Elemental Orb needed to return Naida to her human form. Once she was restored to her proper self, the two spent many years together happily, until Naida's inevitable death. Monuments to James' and Naida's love still stand in the Kingdom of Prasino.
After Naida's death, Prince James married the Swan Lake Princess Odette. After she died, he built a moonlit underground lake for her so she could be reunited with the lake in her death. However, as each of his new loves grew old and died, James grew colder to the world. His final wife was the Princess Snow White from the Mountain Kingdom.
James met the princess when he rescued her from her stepmother's death sentence. Despite Snow White's brother's disapproval of his sister marrying a cursed man, the two were wed. With Snow White, James had his second child, a son named Gwyn. It was at some point during his marriage to Snow White that he was cursed a second time by an unnamed witch. He no longer returned to a frog form, but any mortal being he touched would turn into a frog.
While playing out in the woods one day, young Prince Gwyn was attacked by a Mist Wolf. James sent his men to rescue his son, but he wasn't fast enough. Thankfully, a Red Riding Hood Sister rescued Gwyn from death, but not soon enough to prevent Gwyn from falling prey to the Mist Wolf's paralytic poison. Angry that her husband's men hadn't been fast enough to prevent this tragedy, Snow White left James and took their son back home with her, to the Mountain Kingdom.
James secluded himself in an area that came to be known as Exiled Prince Road. He began to build an Underground Kingdom of shrines devoted to his past loves, and started sending carrier pigeons to the Stewartson Castle to keep an eye on Briar Rose's condition. He likely knew of the prophecy that releasing the spirit of one Stewartson sister would also release the spirit of the other, and wanted to know when Briar Rose was freed from her curse. He also began researching Alchemy, hoping to end his own curse.
When his ex-wife succumbed to the effects of the False Mirror, James issued a decree to have her captured. However, his efforts were in vain, and his troops were ambushed just outside of the Snowfall Kingdom. James did not make further efforts on this front.
In time, James began experimenting on animals and people who crossed his path. He turned them into frogs and attempted to figure out how to change them back into humans. His efforts were fruitless, but they helped pave the way for James' own curse to eventually be lifted. When James abducted a Chancellor's daughter and her bodyguard, the disappearance captured the attention of the right people and the Fairytale Detective was sent to investigate.
It was this Detective (helped by the spirit of James' true love, Princess Ivy) that eventually saved James from the curse he was under. With the curse of immortality removed from him, James swiftly aged and passed away peacefully. His spirit reunited with Princess Ivy's, and the two finally got their long-awaited Happily Ever After.
James then helped the Fairytale Detective access where Snow White had lived with him for a short time so the Detective can learn about her next case. James hasn't been seen again after this time.
Powers and Abilities Edit
- Immortality (formerly): After Ivy's kiss turned him back into a human, her immortality transferred to James.
- Teleportation: James can appear and disappear at will, likely due to his efforts in his studies of Alchemy.
- Roots and Vines: A marking on his left hand allows James to summon roots to entangle and entrap trespassers. Or it's possible that Ivy transferred her powers along with her immortality to James also.
- Frog Transformation: James is able to turn mortals (both human and animal) into frogs with a simple touch.
- Conjuring Magic: Even as a spirit, James could materialize an object physically for the Detective.
- Queen of the Forest Kingdom (mother, presumed deceased)
- King of the Forest Kingdom (father, presumed deceased)
- Unnamed Prince (younger brother, deceased)
- Ivy Green (first wife, deceased)
- Agnes Koch (second wife, deceased)
- Princess Naida (third wife, deceased)
- Odette (fourth wife, deceased)
- Snow White (ex-wife)
- Unnamed daughter (child by Ivy Green)
- Unnamed grandson or granddaughter
- Gwyn (son by Snow White)
- Gerda (daughter-in-law)
- Briar Rose (sister-in-law)
- Stewartson King and Queen (parents-in-law, deceased)
- King Alexandros (father-in-law)
- Princess Calliope (sister-in-law, deceased)
- Teresa (sister-in-law, deceased)
- Princess Althea (sister-in-law)
- Princess Daphne (sister-in-law, unknown)
- King Edric (ex-father-in-law, deceased)
- Ross Red (ex-brother-in-law)
- Rapunzel (future ex-sister-in-law)
- Brunhilda (ex-mother-in-law, deceased)
- Princess Wanda (descendant, deceased)
- Princess Brigid (descendant)
- Royal Advisor (possible enemy, unknown)
- Fairytale Detective (former enemy)
Order of Wives Edit
In The Exiled Prince, we're presented with three distinct orders that James married his wives in. The first is when Princess Ivy relates the tale of Prince James' history to the Fairytale Detective. A video plays along with her words, and it shows each of James' wives in turn, beginning with Princess Ivy and ending with Snow White. The second is in the bonus material accessed on the second play through the game, in the portrait room. The portraits are aligned with Snow White's on one side of the room and Princess Ivy's on the opposite end. It can be surmised that the portraits were arranged in order of when James married them. Finally, we're presented with a pictorial summary of the major events in Prince James' life while the credits roll at the end of the game. Again, the pictures start with Princess Ivy and end with Snow White. Again, this seems like a valid way to determine the order of the marriages.
However, none of these three sources matches the others, aside from the first and last brides. The best we can do is see where they overlap and make the best guess as to which of the three might be most accurate.
Princess Ivy's Tale: Princess Ivy ~ Agnes Koch ~ Princess Naida ~ Odette ~ Snow White
Portrait Room: Princess Ivy ~ Princess Naida ~ Agnes Koch ~ Odette ~ Snow White
Game Ending: Princess Ivy ~ Odette ~ Agnes Koch ~ Princess Naida ~ Snow White
Obviously, Princess Ivy and Snow White's positions are certain. Two of the three also list the Swan Lake Princess as the fourth wife. Two of them also list Agnes Koch immediately before Princess Naida. Therefore, it seems that the video accompanying Princess Ivy's retelling of James' history is most likely the correct one. This order also correlates nicely with the layout of the Underground Kingdom, itself. Ivy's bedroom is in the deepest part of the palace, with Agnes Koch's still within the palace, Princess Naida's just outside of it, the Swan Lake Princess' next furthest out and Snow White's farthest away.
Also, in the game series itself, gave a hint of the correct order as well. We met with Ivy in the second game and Snow White in the third, whom we know are the first and fifth wives. Continuing the order, we learned of Agnes Koch in the fifth game, Princess Naida in the eighth game, and the fourth wife, Odette, in the eleventh game.
Relevant Parables Edit
Rise of the Snow Queen (from Rise of the Snow Queen)
Centuries ago, before the legend of the Snow Queen flowed from the first teller's mouth, there was a Princess as pure as the driven snow and beautiful as the day. They called her Snow White. As a young maiden, Snow White was sentenced to death, but the Frog Prince saved her from that eternal slumber. The two fell madly in love, married, and had a son. One day, the boy snuck out to play in the meadow and a monster attacked him. The Prince's guards were not fast enough to protect him. Snow White fed the remains of a magic apple to her son to place him in a dreamless sleep. Though she saved the boy from the imminent death, the best doctors and Sorcerers could not wake him. Snow White is ravaged by sorrow and blames her husband, the Prince of the Forest, for not sending his guards sooner. With nothing more than the will to save her child, Snow White steals the boy away to the Mountain Kingdom, where her father rules. It is in this castle among the peaks where Snow White will become the legendary Snow Queen whose sorrow leaves the kingdom in ruins.
Agnes Koch, The Princess and the Frog Prince (from The Final Cinderella)
There was once a Queen whose beauty was unparalleled. Before she died, she made her King promise never to marry anyone uglier than herself. Years passed, and the King found that the only person beautiful enough to be his bride was his daughter Agnes. Horrified by her father's plan to marry her, Agnes fled. Along the way, she met Godmother, who used her magic to send Agnes to a faraway land, where she would be safe from her father's pursuit. Upon arriving, Agnes saved a frog from being devoured by a giant snake. Impressed by her bravery, the frog made his identity known: he was the cursed Frog Prince of the Black Forest. Agnes married the Prince, and they lived happily ever after until her death.
The Course of True Love (from The Little Mermaid and the Purple Tide)
Once upon a time, Princess Naida unwittingly crossed a vengeful Goddess who cursed her; she would be a mermaid, forever bonded to the sea, until she found the treasure that would break the spell. In the midst of her search, Naida grew careless and was captured by local fishermen. The greedy men put her on exhibit and charged admission to see the Miraculous Mermaid. Naida despaired of ever becoming human again. One day, Naida encountered a magical frog and, with his help, she was able to escape from her captors. In gratitude, she kissed the frog, which transformed into a human Prince. They instantly fell in love and he chose to help her. He searched the world on her behalf for the secret treasure that would break the Goddess' curse on her, as well as help her father. When the Prince returned with the treasure in hand, Naida was returned to human form and they lived happily, contentedly - for awhile.
Far From Home (from A Fable of Two Hearts)
The enchanted frog's curse was lifted by a kiss from the Swan Princess, who stood in amazement as she watched a hideous frog transform into a beautiful Prince. It wouldn't be long before the two fell in love, leaving Odette hesitant on her next step. The two parted for a short time, corresponding only through letters. But Odette had never denied her feelings, and would not do so for long. She announced her decision to wed the ex-frog Prince James to the Swan Guard, who in turn had her exiled from the Swan Kingdom. Odette spent a happy couple of years with James, but being so far away from the Swan Lake had taken its toll. She started to age rapidly, growing thinner and paler until she finally succumbed to illness. Without her by his side, Prince James reverted back to his amphibian state, and mourned her for many years. He built a small lake next to her shrine, so at least in death she could be reunited with her greatest love.
The Untold Story of the Frog Prince (from Return of the Salt Princess)
Once, there was a Prince who transformed into a frog through a curse. One day, he found a golden arrow in the pond. The arrow was shot by a Princess, who was one of the immortal guardians of the Goddess Flora. They fell in love at first sight.The Princess kissed the Prince, giving up her immortality in order to break his curse. The happy couple got married and had a mortal child, who grew up with no sign of any curse. They thought that they could have their happy ending. Alas, this was not to be. For as the Princess grew old, the Prince remained as young as ever. In the breaking of his curse, the Princess had passed on her immortality to the Prince. The Prince watched on as his Princess aged, and his child got married and blessed the Prince with a grandchild. Finally, his Princess died, the Prince fell into deep grief. He returned to his frog form and was doomed to repeat this tragic story for as long as he lived. The Prince's unhappy story was passed down from generation to generation through his child. Eventually, one of the Prince's descendants decided to rewrite the Prince's story and publish it with a happy ending. Thus, the Prince's true story became lost. Not even his later descendants knew the true story.
Quotes from Prince James Edit
- "At last! I'm pleased to finally speak with you, Princess Odette."
- "Now you may see me as I truly am! Prince James, at your service, milady."
- "You are not welcome here, stranger. I do not know your intentions, but taking my key is the last mistake you'll ever make. This is the fate of those who attempt to venture into my kingdom."
- "Don't worry, stranger, your dire predicament is nothing compared to the curse I bear every single day."
- "To honor my beloved ones for they show me the meaning of life."
- "Detective, this has gone on long enough. I am putting an end to this now."
- "Every day I yearn to be with you again - but how?" (to Ivy)
- "My curse is immortality - seeing everyone I love die. You now hold the immortal wand, Detective. Please, put an end to my suffering."
- "My Princess Ivy, I will be with you always, forever, happily ever after."
- "Your elegance and grace have forever captured my heart." (James' dedication to Princess Odette)
- "Princess Cinderella, you taught me that even the most common woman can have the heart of a Queen." (James' dedication to Agnes Koch)
- "My darling from the sea, I will treasure the life we have shared." (James' dedication to Princess Naida)
- "Princess Ivy, my first love. How I yearned to be with you forever." (James' dedication to Princess Ivy)
Quotes about Prince James Edit
- "The Frog Prince has passed away. In death, he finally achieved eternal happiness by joining Princess Ivy."