Oak Willowglimmer, Mistress of The Gardens Makes a Startling Discovery – Chapter Six

They certainly made an interesting sight: Oak, Sam, Sherwood and Henry, as they made their way out of the cave. It seemed they had walked forever, yet when Oak looked over her shoulder, it had been only eleven stones’ throw in distance.  She found this to be a little disheartening, but said nothing, for her friends were bravely moving forward and she didn’t want to say or do anything to make them feel sad.  Henry said, “We’re almost at the entrance, or one of the entrances.  I can always tell because the fairies of the light start whispering in my ear.”  Oak stopped and asked, “What?  I don’t see any fairies anywhere.  Henry, you’re fooling us, right?”  He smiled and shook his head and laughed, causing the walls to shake a bit.  “Oops, sorry!”  Stones were falling from the ledges of the cave that were up above. “I’m so sorry. I’ll be more careful,” Henry said, looking down at his feet.  Oak knew that Henry did that when he felt badly or embarrassed.  “Oh, it’s OK,” said Sam, as he jumped onto Oak’s shoulder.  “We know you didn’t mean to do it, but you really do need to be mindful of how big you are and how loud your voice and laughter is.”  “Well”, Oak said,” grabbing Henry’s little finger with her arm, “No harm done. Now, Henry, please tell me about these light fairies.” Henry’s face lit up and he smiled so big and cute!

Sitting down very gently, Henry began.  “When I was a baby, my mother would sing lullabies to me and my favorite was about the light fairies.” He softly hummed a little of the lullaby and everyone sat to listen. He said the words were, Little babies, do not fear; the sweet light fairies are always near.  So shut your eyes and know you’re safe, for the fairies of the light are in this place.  They love and protect you during the day and at night; you never have to fear the dark for nearby is their light. “Oh Henry!  I just love it!  It’s such a nice little song.”  “Well, there’s more, but we need to keep moving until we’re out of the cave,” said Henry.  Inside his heart, Henry was so happy he made Oak smile.  Not many people smiled because of Henry. He noticed that even Sam was tapping his many legs to the tune and Sherwood was puffing little clouds of smoke in tune with the rhythm of the song.

They all stood up and continued following Henry to the light.  As they walked, Oak was wondering about the light fairies, but decided to put off asking anything else until they were out of the cave.  Finally, they all saw a light; a tiny little light ahead.  Henry pointed to it and said, “There’s an entrance…or is it the exit?  Hmmmmm.”  Sam and Sherwood looked at each other and rolled their eyes.  They hurried their pace and moved toward the light as quickly as they could.  But it seemed that the more quickly they moved, the light never got closer.  It was like the light was moving ahead at the same speed they were moving ahead.  Oak was worried and Henry saw that.  “Oak, don’t worry.  I know we are close.  It just doesn’t seem that way.”

All of a sudden, the light so far away, came rushing at them!  There was no sound, just the light coming and coming until it stopped…it stopped right in front of Henry’s nose!  He was grinning from ear to ear!  Sherwood gasped and Sam just hung from the emergency web he had just spun to save himself from the light.  Oak stood there, staring at the light.  The light was a fairy; a beautiful yellow fairy with a pretty pink dress.  Oh, she was amazing.  The little fairy flew closer to Henry, until she was actually sitting on Henry’s nose.  This presented a funny sight for Henry’s eyes crossed as he looked at the fairy. He obviously knew her and she knew him.  “Henry”, she said (in a sing-song voice), “I’ve missed you so much” and she bent over and kissed him on the nose.  “Aw, I’ve missed you too. I’m so glad to see you!  We need your help.” “Why, of course, Henry.  I knew that and that’s why I’m here.  I’m always here for you, just as the lullaby your mother sang to you says.”  Right then, the fairy looked at Oak, and smiled. “Hello, Oak.  I’m Sun Song, of the Light Fairy Clan.  I’ve know you a very long time.”  “You have?  I don’t think I know you,” replied Oak, with a puzzled look on her face.  “Oh yes, Dear. You are my sister’s daughter; I’m your aunt.”  Well, Oak almost fainted at that remark.  She stared at Sun Song and couldn’t say a word.  Her mind was racing, trying to figure all of this strangeness going on.  Sun Song stepped closer and took Oak’s little hand.  “You know what this means, don’t you?”  Sun Song looked long and hard into Oak’s face.  Slowly, Oak shook her head, but couldn’t say anything.  Smiling, Sun Song leaned forward and gently kissed Oak on her forehead. “You, my dear, are a fairy…an honest to goodness fairy.  Not only that, you are a very special one because you’re the daughter of Mary.  Mary is our Queen and that makes you a princess…Princess Oak Willowglimmer.”  Oak just still stood there; she could not believe her ears.  The floor vibrated a little as Sherwood sat down.  Sam spun a little web to hang out in and also to position himself so his 23 eyes could see everywhere.

Sam had a good “sense” of things…after all with all those legs and eyes, how could he not? While Sun Song was talking with Oak, Sam glanced up and down and all around.  Right now, he had a sense that something just wasn’t right…he hung in the web, swinging back and forth slowly and noticed some movement under the long dress that Sun Song had on.  That was strange because she was sitting down and he could see her feet, so it sure wasn’t her feet making the movement.  Sam worked up the momentum of his swinging so that he could get closer to her.  On his sixth swing toward her, he saw a tail; a tail that looked like a scorpion tail.  The more he looked, the more he was sure.  Sam knew scorpion tails well, for scorpions were his enemies.  Henry was sitting and listening to Sun Song and didn’t seem to notice anything amiss. Sherwood didn’t either. All of a sudden, Sun Song looked sharply at Sam and asked (in a rather sharp tone), “Just what are you doing spider?”  Startled by her tone, Sherwood, Henry and Oak looked at her and then at Sam, as he jumped back into the middle of his little web.  “I’m just hanging out, like spiders do.”  “Well,” she said, “You’re hanging a little too close to me and I don’t like spiders much anyway.”  She rose to her feet and Oak jumped up and said, “Please don’t do anything to him.  That’s Sam, my friend.  He would never do anything to hurt you.”  The fairy, who by the way, seemed to be changing colors, slowly walked toward Sam.  (to be continued…)

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Oak Willowglimmer – Mistress of The Gardens (Chapter Four)

Swing at nightflower fairiesMother fairydrago

She was so relaxed, as she leaned back and went back and forth and back and forth and back and…wait!  There was no forth!  Oak went back on the swing and stayed there! Since she was in a “laid back” position anyway on the swing, she looked up and there was Sam…all 23 eyes of him…looking back at her!  “Hi, Oak! Good to see ya again! Don’t be afraid, but you’re stuck in my web.”  Sam kinda hung there, sheepishly looking back and forth, as Oak tried to get her bearings, as she wriggled around on the swing (which wasn’t easy, being hung up in the air like that).  “Sam!  What?”  “Shhhhh,” Sam suddenly grabbed her hands and pulled her off the swing, onto a giant strand of web, which went from one end of the area (she still wasn’t sure what it was) to the other.  Somehow, he literally put her on his back and wrapped a quick silk rope around her so she wouldn’t fall. and off they went, scurrying across the strand and then Sam threw (really) webs out of his hands so they could catch hold of each one and swing from one to the other, until they were up and over the gate.  Oak could barely catch her breath because Sam flew so quickly.  It really was like flying…from silken strand to the next.

Oak must have fallen asleep, because she suddenly found herself in a cave; a cave filled with webs of all colors…gold, silver, red, orange, white, black and on and on.  Rather than spiders, there were fairies!  Real fairies who were spinning the webs and placing them throughout the cave. Putting her little fists to her eyes to wipe the sleep away, Oak’s eyes opened as big as she could make them.  Yes, the webs and the fairies were still there.  “Oak!”  “Thank goodness, Sam. You’re still with me,” she said as she went to hug him.  His hugs were pretty snug because he had so many legs/arms with which to hug.  “Of course, Oak, of course I’m with you!”  With that, Sam swept her up again and they glided up on a golden strand of silk; the most beautiful golden she had ever seen.  Up up up they went until they reached what appeared to be the upper floor of the cave, which really looked like a castle.  Sam helped her down off the silken strand, and they walked toward a bright light that was shining from in front of them.  The light was glowing and bright, yet not so bright one couldn’t look into it.  It was amazing.  As they approached the light, Oak could make out the form of a woman.  There was something about this woman that seemed sweetly familiar.  But, she had a silk veil of butterflies over most of her face and Oak could only see her eyes.

The woman stepped out from the light and just stood still and gazed about her surroundings. Oak noticed that everything was quiet and that the lady was looking over Oak’s head, so Oak turned around and almost gasped with awe, for the cave was now a soft gold and white.  The little ledges up and down the walls of the cave had lovely fairies kneeling and facing this woman.  Candles and torches were lit and lined the walls and pathways; stars that looked like they came down from the heavens were hanging from above and inside the frame of each star was a fairy playing a harp.  The music from these harps was mesmerizing and dreamy.  Oak could not stop looking around for in every direction she looked was a new surprise, a new delight.  Tree frogs and lizards were dressed in light cotton robes and each had a special hat on that had tiny fireflies circling the brims of the hats.  The frogs and lizards were bringing goblets of freshly mined golden grape juice.  She knew this because she heard a baby girl fairy telling her friends.

Turning back to the woman, there was now a nest on the ground; or should I say on the “cloud”?  First, it was a nest, but a big nest – big enough for a grown up fairy.  The nest was made of beautiful twigs of cedar, birch, oak, and pine.  Blended into the twigs were stems and leaves from herbs and flowers: lavender, roses petals, sage, rosemary and some marigold.  The nest was lined with gardenia and plumeria blossoms. Now, although she thought it was on the floor, it was actually sitting upon a lavender colored cloud that had drifted down from the opening at the top of the cave.  When the woman turned to walk toward the nest, that is when Oak saw the woman had wings!  She had fairy wings! Not only did she have beautiful fairy wings, she also had hair just like Oak’s mother!  It was long and wavy and reddish yellow…such a beautiful color. The woman still had her face veil on, as she went to step into the nest. But then butterflies flew from her veil to lift her long skirt so she would not trip.  After she stepped into the nest and sat down, the butterflies then flew into the woman’s hair and became still, like beautiful hair pins.

Everyone in the cave knelt and then slowly rose.  As they rose to their feet, the woman began speaking in a soft melodic voice (Oak was thinking it sounded like her mother).  Now that she was facing everyone, it could be seen that her eyes were emerald green and soft, as soft as her voice.  “My loved ones,” she began.  Without warning, a fiery red smoke descended from the opening in the cave (at the top) and began circling the room, almost in the shape of pointing fingers; each poking at a fairy, or a lizard or a frog.  The stench was horrific!  The smoke seemed to take on the odor of a dead ogre. (Of course, Oak had never seen an ogre, much less smelled a live or dead one, but the smoke smelled like what she thought one would smell like).  The ground began to shake and the little ledges that fairies were sitting on began breaking and falling to the earth like shards of glass, trying to stab and cut as they hit the ground.  Thunder filled the chamber and was so loud that the fairies had to put their hands over their ears.  But the thunder could not disguise or extinguish what Oak heard.  It was her mother again, calling, “Oak, Oak, come home.  You’re in danger.  Come home.”

Turning to ask the fairy lady for help to get to her mother, Oak discovered she was gone!  In her place, where the nest was, sat a giant dragon, who was looking straight at Oak, as smoked poured out of his nose.  (to be continued)