Broken Dreams

A Modern Twist of the Classic Cinderella Story

by Emma Neary | Release Date: January 5, 2018 | Availability: Print, Kindle

Bloodily Ever After

Every Disney fan knows the story of Cinderella, her evil stepmother and despicable stepsisters, Prince Charming, her animal friends and glass slipper, and of course the happily ever after. But this Cinderella wakes up in 2017. High school. Proms. And blood, lots of blood...

Ella wanders into Paris hundreds of years after her stepmother ensorceled her into a deep, seemingly never-ending sleep. She meets a modern-day Prince Charming, who might be the real Prince Charming, and struggles to fit in: new clothes, texting, cafeterias, exams.

But nightmarish visions plague Ella's dreams, and somehow her evil stepmother has pursued her through time to torture her loved ones again and again in orgies of blood and agony. Is any of it real?

As Ella's mind frays, her Prince Charming commits her to a mental hospital, where her thoughts turn to suicide as her final hope for a happily ever after.

But first there must come a reckoning. And blood, lots of blood...

Table of Contents


Chapter 1: Beginnings

Chapter 2: Awaiting Trouble

Chapter 3: Grief Misunderstood

Chapter 4: An Evil Promise

Chapter 5: The Glimmer of Hope

Chapter 6: A Night to Remember

Chapter 7: Dark Magic

Chapter 8: The Unworthy Bride

Chapter 9: Nine A New Awakening

Chapter 10: An Unexpected Friend

Chapter 11: Odd Behavior

Chapter 12: Sleep Like Death

Chapter 13: Love Not Certain

Chapter 14: No Invitation in Particular

Chapter 15: Hurt Arising

Chapter 16: Transformation Central

Chapter 17: Blamed Too Soon

Chapter 18: Dreams Not Dreamed

Chapter 19: A Red Situation

Chapter 20: Checked In

Chapter 21: A Cliffhanger

Chapter 22: Unreal

We are all familiar with the classic Cinderella story. It normally involves a beautiful, parentless girl who is relegated, because of a series of unfortunate events, to becoming her stepfamily’s servant. Eventually, the beautiful maiden gets the opportunity to go the royal ball with a little help from her fairy godmother. Cinderella naturally wins the heart of the prince and the two live happily ever after.

In the story you are about to read, the famous tale is not what it seems. Our story begins in a beautiful provincial town set in 1850s France. There a fair maiden, named Ella, who lives in a stately manor with her mother and her father. But, through a twist of fate and an evil spell, she finds herself hurtled through time to the 21st century.

Ella must learn to survive in the modern world while dealing with the average teen drama. She is a fairy-tale character trapped in our topsy-turvy time. Can she survive, or will she be haunted by visions of her evil stepmother? Will this cause her to go absolutely crazy and give up everything she cares about?

Emma Neary

Emma Neary, was born and raised in Celebration, Florida, and has been a Disney kid all of her life. Now 15 years old, Emma is new to the world of publishing, but she is excited about the opportunity to share her story.

Emma hopes that her readers enjoy Broken Dreams as much as she did in putting it together.

The Prince is on his way to Ella's stepmother's house with the glass slipper. Ella knows it will fit only her foot. Happy ending, right? Not this time...

When I went upstairs the next morning, Beverly, Diana, and Macy were sitting at the table chatting. “I can’t believe the prince only danced with that one girl who destroyed the whole food table,” Macy said as she fiddled with her painted nails. They were talking about the ball. Usually, I wouldn’t eavesdrop on somebody’s conversation, but I know they were talking about me. I was the girl the prince danced with. I pretended to clean something in the room as I secretly heard their conversation. It wasn’t hard because they talked so loud.

Diana was stuffing her face with biscuits, but was able to get out a response. “I know, they talked all evening. I kept hearing her annoying little laugh, he didn’t care about any other maiden. He always got so close to her, grabbing her waist so tightly. I wish he did that to me.”

It was amazing when he grabbed my waist, or when he held my hand, it was like a feeling of comfort and love. I smiled as they envied my night with the prince, not a feeling in the world was better than this, being with Prince William was a magical feeling. He made me feel so special, how he called me beautiful all evening and even proposed. None of these vile girls deserved an amazing man like him.

Macy piped in once more, “I have no chance against her. After they danced for a few minutes, the two of them disappeared into the gardens. I watched them, they both sat there holding hands talking. We all know that she is the maiden he is going to marry.” Macy had a look of utter rejection, as if she felt like nothing. Finally, Macy, how do you think it feels to be invisible and all your dreams crushed? Every little bit of pure joy I once had was now gone thanks to Beverly. I will never pity you, Macy.

“Darling, he saw you, and you’re going to be the one that fits in that slipper when the prince arrives later today,” Beverly said to assure Macy everything was going to be okay.

The minute she said the prince was coming today, I darted up and ran in to where they were talking. I looked at Beverly with eyes that begged for an answer. I stuttered my words and asked eagerly, “What do you mean about the slipper?”

Beverly shot daggers at me that cut right through my happy spirits. She crossed her arms and held her head up high. “Please tell me, Beverly, what do you mean the maiden who fits the slipper?” Beverly eventually cleared her throat and answered in a disgusted voice, “Oh, the girl he danced all evening with ran from him at the ball. Apparently, she accidentally lost her shoe when she was running down the stairs. So the prince is traveling throughout the kingdom until he finds the maiden who fits the shoe perfectly.”

The prince is coming here? Maybe he will recognize me, and I can be his bride and we could travel the world together. It’s still a possibility that I can escape from this prison.

“Now if we want the shoe to fit, Macy, we are going to have to use some magic,” Beverly said as she whipped out a wand.

Magic? What is she talking about? I bit my lip as I worried Beverly would somehow ruin this for me, too. I glanced over to see that Macy’s face grew scared. She grinded her teeth together in nervousness, and stood up from the chair she sat in. “Mother, what are you doing?” Macy said as she backed away.

Beverly moved closer as Macy panicked. My eyes widened and I wondered what she was doing. I leaned over to see what was going on. By this time, Diana was holding down Macy as Beverly moved closer to her. Then Beverly replied, “Just hold still, you coward, it won’t hurt a bit.”

She said some magic words, pointed her wand at Macy’s feet, and a spark flashed.

Macy let out a screech as she flinched forward, causing Diana to fall. What just happened? I moved a little closer. I was almost concerned about Macy. “Now she will have the perfect-sized feet to fit the slipper,” Beverly said with a sinister smile.

I didn’t know what to say or think. Beverly performed some sort of dark magic; she really is a witch. That explains a lot, especially how she convinced Father to marry her and how he defended her so passionately. If he knew, things might have been different.

If Macy’s foot fits in that slipper, it means the she could be the prince’s bride, and that would leave me out of the picture. Is the spell really going to make her foot fit that shoe? Beverly really is out to completely ruin my life.

I don’t have time to worry about that. I have to stay out of Beverly’s way until the prince arrives and then maybe I can reach him first.

And then suddenly, Beverly grabbed my arm and started walking me to the basement door, her nails digging into my skin. What was she doing? I was keeping out of her way and why would she suspect that I could possibly compete with her daughter. All I knew was this is going to turn out bad. She threw me into the basement, and I stumbled and eventually fell down the stairs.

“Now you stay down there,” Beverly said with jealously permeating her voice. “I can’t let you interfere with Macy and the prince. I will not let you ever have your happy ending. My daughters deserves this, no, I deserve this.” Beverly looked like a woman that has gone completely mad, with her power-hungry face and cold eyes. She then slammed the door shut and I could her the tumblers of the lock click as she locked the door and my fate.

Continued in "Broken Dreams"!

So the glass slipper didn't work out. But now Ella's in the modern world, and the prom is right around the corner. Happy ending, right? Not this time...

I was sitting on the stairs of an old building in the woods, playing with my hair, when a flash of lightning lit up the sky. Rain began to pour, and thunder began to crash. I sat there remembering that day when Liam and I danced in the rain. It was like a dance of endless happiness. I looked up at the sky and tried to catch raindrops on my tongue, like what I did when I was a child. My mother and I would run outside and catch the falling raindrops as we hummed some of our favorite tunes. My beautiful memories came to a screeching halt.

Out of nowhere, Beverly appeared, and this time she was not alone. Out of the darkness, Diara came to her side. With a snap of her fingers, my mother appeared on a bed with her hands and feet separately bound. Beverly gave me an evil grin and snapped her fingers once more, and the ropes that were around my mother’s hands and feet began to pull in separate directions. They began to pull faster and harder by the second. My mother let out an agonizing scream. In another second, a second bed appeared, this time with Mia on it, her hands and feet tied the same way. Her ropes began pulling as well. They both let out agonizing screams. With another snap, a giant pendulum appeared and under it was Liam. The blade started to swing back and forth, faster by the second. It finally started to cut into Liam’s skin, as bits of blood started to slowly ooze out. Now all three of them let out agonizing screams, and Beverly laughed. Diara stood there, her arms crossed with a sinister expression plastered on her face. I cried out all their names, but it would not stop no matter how loud I screamed. I cried out louder and louder, but they kept screaming and screaming.

A puddle of sweat bigger than the last time surrounded me when I woke up. I spun my head around to see I was just in my bedroom. My heart was pounding and my head was throbbing. Why was I having all these horrible dreams? I’m almost afraid to go to sleep anymore.

I got up and started getting ready for school. I glanced in the mirror and saw a smile plastered across my face. I couldn’t wait; prom was tomorrow! I put on a turquoise dress and put my hair in a ponytail with light makeup. I was greeted by a warm, cheery smile from Mia.

This drive to school was the happiest one yet, as we jammed out to music the whole way there. We talked about girl stuff and kept laughing the entire time.

I was excited to walk into school, because tomorrow night I would have the most magical evening of my life or the most horrible evening of my life. What did Chris mean? Was that a death threat? And if so, was it for me or him? Fear grew inside me at the thought how far Chris will go.

I ran into the doors of the school and raced through the endless hallways until I finally found Liam. I made sure my hair was okay, then I slowly walked toward him. I sat down next to him, and scooted as close as possible. “I heard Mia showed you the dress,” he said as soon as I settled in.

I scooted even closer to him and jumped with giddiness as I said, “Yes, it’s the most gorgeous dress I have ever seen. I can’t wait until tomorrow. “

He smiled. “You can’t wait? I can’t wait another second.”

Suddenly, he got up and whipped out his phone, and music started to play. At first I wondered what he was doing, but then after a few seconds I realized it. Liam wanted to dance with me right in the middle of this crowded lunch room. Won’t that be so embarrassing? Well, some might say dancing in the rain is embarrassing, but it was quite fun. Besides, when somebody is in love, they do crazy things.

Liam offered me his hand. I grabbed it, and we started to dance. At first we didn’t really move much; maybe people won’t see. Liam then spun me, and grabbed on to make sure I wouldn’t fall.

As we continued to slowly dance, Liam brushed his fingers along my cheek and asked, “What’s wrong?”

I felt myself blush as my cheeks heated up. “What if people see? They’ll laugh.”

Liam smiled that charming smile. “Who cares?”

He’s right, why should it matter what we do? I’m going to dance with my prom date, and they have to stand here, watching us. I changed my expression and began getting into it, dancing and laughing as he spun me once more. Our bodies moved to the rhythm of the somewhat fast-paced music. Our eyes were focused on each other, but we kept laughing as we tripped over each other’s feet.

It was just like that day in the rain, but this time I felt even happier. I thought people would laugh at us, but they cheered us on. As we danced, more people started to dance. We were all laughing hysterically, and could not stop. It was like nothing could break the feeling I felt right now. Then the bell rang, and it was gone. Liam grabbed my hand and escorted me out of the lunch room. I laid my head on his shoulder as we walked to our next class, still laughing from the pre-prom warm up we had.

Continued in "Broken Dreams"!

About Theme Park Press

Theme Park Press is the world's leading independent publisher of books about the Disney company, its history, its films and animation, and its theme parks. We make the happiest books on earth!

Our catalog includes guidebooks, memoirs, fiction, popular history, scholarly works, family favorites, and many other titles written by Disney Legends, Disney animators and artists, Mouseketeers, Cast Members, historians, academics, executives, prominent bloggers, and talented first-time authors.

We love chatting about what we do: drop us a line, any time.

Theme Park Press Books

The Unauthorized Story of Walt Disney's Haunted Mansion The Ride Delegate 501 Ways to Make the Most of Your Walt Disney World Vacation The Cotton Candy Road Trip The Wonderful World of Customer Service at Disney Disney Destinies Disney Melodies The Happiest Workplace on Earth Storm over the Bay A Historical Tour of Walt Disney World: Volume 1 Mouse in Transition Mouseketeers Down Under Murder in the Magic Kingdom Walt Disney and the Promise of Progress City Service with Character Son of Faster Cheaper A Tale of Two Resorts I Saw Ariel Do a Keg Stand The Adventures of Young Walt Disney Death in the Tragic Kingdom Two Girls and a Mouse Tale Ears & Bubbles The Easy Guide 2015 Who's the Leader of the Club? Disney's Hollywood Studios Funny Animals Life in the Mouse House The Book of Mouse Disney's Grand Tour The Accidental Mouseketeer The Vault of Walt: Volume 1 The Vault of Walt: Volume 2 The Vault of Walt: Volume 3 Who's Afraid of the Song of the South? Amber Earns Her Ears Ema Earns Her Ears Sara Earns Her Ears Katie Earns Her Ears Brittany Earns Her Ears Walt's People: Volume 1 Walt's People: Volume 2 Walt's People: Volume 13 Walt's People: Volume 14 Walt's People: Volume 15

We're always in the market for new authors with great ideas. Or great authors with new ideas. Whichever type of author you are, we'd be happy to discuss your book. Before you contact us, however, please make sure you can answer "yes" to these threshold questions:

Is It Right for Us?

We specialize in books that have some connection to Disney or theme parks. Disney, of course, has become a broad topic, and encompasses not just theme parks and films but comic books, animation, and a big chunk of pop culture. Your book should fit into one (or more) of those broad categories.

Is It Going to Make Money?

There's never a guarantee that any book will make money, but certain types of books are less likely to do so than others. They include: hardcovers, books with color photos, and books that go on forever ("forever" as in 400+ pages). We won't automatically turn down these types of books, but you'll have to be a really good salesman to convince us.

Are You Great to Work With?

Writing books and publishing books should be fun. The last thing you want, and the last thing we want, is a contentious relationship. We work with authors who share our philosophy of no drama and zero attitude, and the desire for a respectful, realistic, mutually beneficial partnership.