Stumptoad lives close to the Crusted Swamp outside of a nearby village. When strangers see him, they are frightened. He has visions of his kind but he has not seen any of his kind and he is lonely. One day while at the swamp raking leeches, a visitor stopped and asked him about Prince Tilbert of Hickling. Stumptoad pretends to be the prince and from that moment his life is changed forever.