Once upon a time, there was a very rich kingdom with a very rich King. The King was a lonely man, for his wife died giving birth and left him with no heir. The King decided that he was getting old and lonely and held a competition to see who could be the future successor to the throne. He told the people of the kingdom that whoever could bring him the most valuable, most precious gift would be the next to reign.
People came from everywhere to present their most valuable items, bringing their prized pigs, supposed magic beans and gold necklaces, but the King was unimpressed.
Then, a little man came to give the king his gift. He had a special talent--he could spin straw into gold. The little man was confident that he would win the competition, and sure enough, the King was very impressed. The man wowed everyone within the throneroom, even three other knights that came with exotic metals more precious than gold. However, when the King asked the man his name, he refused, saying that it was his only weakness--if anyone said his name he would die.
That night, after the little man left, a woman came to visit the king. She was beautiful, and her gift intrigued the king. The girl was Snow White, and she offered the king a gold key and said that it was the key to an underground kingdom with an underground castle. To prove she was telling the truth, she gave him a golden branch and diamond branch from trees that did not grow anywhere else in the world. The king was astonished.
The small man left the castle feeling as if he would definitely win the throne. However, the following day, the king declared that he was undecided between five contestants. He was absolutely outraged, and he knew that his competition was probably the three knights from the exotic Northern lands. The man was so desperate for the throne, he followed the knights into the woods and killed them.
Although the little man knew that he had gotten rid of almost all of his competition, he longed to know who the last person was. The little man was feeling especially insecure, so he went to consult his magic mirror. Much to his surprise, when he asked the mirror who it was, it displayed the intelligent and fair maiden Snow White.