Yes, it was decided by the young couple that before they could venture into the village of humans and begin their work caring for the animals that lived there, they would have the ritual of union. This is somewhat like the marriage ceremony in the world of the humans, but it’s simpler, yet it is magical and wondrous. One also never knows what is going to happen at this ritual.
All of the fairies, young and old, gathered to plan the ritual, which was going to take place when the moon was full. It just so happens that the moon was going to be full the very next evening. Moon Fall and Star Gazer happily disappeared into the forest to write their oaths to one another and make plans for their move. Oh, it was an exciting afternoon and evening for all in the Forest of Lang. There had not been a ritual of union for 173 fairy years. Most of the elder fairies made busy with creating a gossamer gown for Moon Fall, while the younger fairies were sent to gather Lilies of The Valley for her wreath. The adult fairies were pulling out age-old recipes of herbal spirits and dandelion treats. The male fairies were tasked with stringing multi-colored crystals gathered from the Stream of Greenwood, for necklaces and rings to be presented to the young couple upon taking their oaths of union. However, the oldest of the elder fairies, was fashioning – what would likely be the most treasured gift of all – a basket woven of the most valued wheat grass in the forest…golden crib and locket grass; the strongest grass ever known. Why, baskets that held volumes of gold were made of this special grass. It was strong and held fast, even when carrying a very heavy treasure. THIS basket would, indeed, carry a valued treasure.
Once all the tasks had been completed and the elder fairies bestowed their approval upon the gown, the jewelry, the drink and food (no one was to see the basket, nor did the oldest elder fairy require or even consider approval), all fairies, young and old, proceeded to rest, for the next day would bring so much excitement!
Meanwhile, Moon Fall and Star Gazer were sitting around a tall oak tree, with their backs leaning against it, as they were composing their oaths. Every so often, Moon Fall would stop and gaze up into the sunbeams peeking through the branches and she would smile. Secretly, she wanted to let loose with a primal scream of pure joy, but feared it would frighten Star Gazer so much he would take flight and never return. The happiness she felt was literally making her heart beat quickly, more so than usual. She found she could barely walk anymore; every other step was taken on air, not the ground. Why, even at times, she had to take a deep breath and fill her lungs with air so that she would be more grounded. Star Gazer was deliriously happy, but being the planner that he was, he also was making plans for them for their new life. It was important to him that they be able to pursue their passion of caring for animals and the thought of giving care to animals that were deprived of it, was an honor for him and for his Love.
Before long, the sun had disappeared and the moon was rising high in the night sky. Not quite a full moon, but large enough to cast light upon the busy fairies as they finished their tasks and prepared to sleep. Moon Fall and Star Gazer had finished their oaths and each departed to spend one last night with their families. Star Gazer gently kissed her. She looked up at him and threw her arms around his neck and whispered, “This time tomorrow, we shall be making our pledges to one another and then…” Star Gazer stepped back and laughed out loud saying, “Yes, we will be three!”
The next morning, the sun had not even risen and the forest was busy with activity! The clearing in the forest was being prepared for the ceremony. Flower petals were being gathered and placed into the special baskets for the flower fairies to prepare the way for the bride to walk the aisle. Only special flower petals were used and so it was rather time-consuming finding them, but the search yielded lovely ones and the fairies had great fun while looking.
Now, behind the scene, so to speak, the wood nymphs had their own tasks to complete. These were tasks that were carried out with great love and joy, for they were in charge of preparing and guarding the special tree in that clearing (circle). The tree was hundreds of years old and bore its age with great beauty and grace. The long limbs and branches of the tree were strong, yet feminine and seemed to sway in the breeze, even if there wasn’t a breeze. The colors of green in the leaves were many; light, medium and dark and every shade of green in-between. The wood of the trunk glistened as if it was made of marble and gold. This grand tree was actually an Angel Oak, which towered over most of the forest trees. There was not another tree like this one for hundreds of miles and so the legend in the Forest of Lang was that this oak tree was sent to this particular forest to watch over the forest and its inhabitants. But the Angel Tree did even more for the forest, which you’ll learn about soon enough.
Meanwhile, Moon Fall was bathing in the Golden Falls of the forest, with the animals standing by as guards and assistants to the bride-to-be. Robins and blue birds held her robe for her as she emerged from the pool at the foot of the falls. Crows carried the towel for her hair and swept it round and round like a turban on her head. “Oh, thank you all so very much for everything.” Moon Fall was smiling as she made her way to her little home to get ready for the ceremony. “I’m so excited and happy! This is the most wonderful day of my life,” she said. All the birds chirped their happiness. Fairies were beginning to arrive to ready her for the wedding.
Star Gazer had been ready for hours! He was walking through the forest and his heart was full of love for Moon Fall and he was looking forward to their life together – married and doing what they loved: caring for animals. Star Gazer’s mind was racing through a number of thoughts, but the main thought that kept coming was that of Moon Gazer, the magical and wonderful fairy he has loved for so long. At last, they would be wed to one another. He was so engrossed in his thoughts that he didn’t hear the cracking of dry leaves behind him or the whispering in the trees; for the creatures of the forest had been instructed to keep an eye on him and make sure he was at the ceremony on time. Young fairies were flying through the trees, somewhat silently – but not quite – watching Star Gazer’s every move to ensure he was safe and back home on time.
The time for the wedding was drawing near. Moon Fall was dressed in an exquisite gown of gossamer, lace and silk. The special jewels and crystals adorned her dark hair and her bouquet was made up of Sunflowers, Daisies, White Morning Glories, and Baby’s Breath, with just a touch of Queen Anne’s Lace. Long tendrils of silk fell from the bouquet, with little pearls sewn into the silken ribbons. The Elder Fairies stood back and just sighed with love for her. Thoughts of her as a wee baby flew through their minds and like a film; photos of her throughout the years were dancing about. Each Elder Fairy took their turn whispering something into her ear and placing a small “something” in her palms, which she then placed into the lace purse on her right wrist. It was tradition within the fairy kingdom that when a young fairy marries, each of the Elder Fairies presents her with a special gem and/or crystal which serves a special purpose in the life of the bride: from health to goodness to protection. These were treasures that fairies passed on throughout the generations.
“Well, dearies! It is time to begin making our way to the clearing.” The eldest of the Elder Fairies took her place beside Moon Fall, to guide her toward her future.
Back in the circle and in the branches of the Angel Oak, the wood nymphs had checked everything in, around and below the oak one more time, and then descended for a fast break before the ceremony began. All was ready; even more so than anyone knew…for an unseen and uninvited guest was approaching the side of the Angel Oak that was against the dense forest, the side that no one saw while standing in the clearing. This uninvited guest made its way up the lower trunk of the oak and found a place to settle in, just inside a knot hole. The brown and gold of the guest matched the trunk of Angel Oak so no one would have even noticed anyone or anything not part of the oak.
Now, everything was ready…
Anyway, it was decided by the Elder Fairy and her council that Moon Fall and Star Gazer would be the caretakers of the animals in the village. They also decided that before they could embark upon this important mission, their union must be sealed. I didn’t tell you before that when the union is sealed at the union ritual…remember the tree in the circle with the couple? Once the two fairies are spiritually and magically united, this special tree delivers to them a baby fairy! Yes! It is true!
We have a fairy in our midst who used to be human. She was born human and throughout the years has evolved into a fairy. It does happen sometimes, you know. I bring this to your attention because we have learned so much from her about human beings. Her name is now Oak Willowglimmer. Oak has wonderful memories and shares them with us when we are in our circles at night. One of her earliest memories is seeing fireflies or lightening bugs for the first time. She just knew they were fairies, although some adults said they were just flying bugs. Oak knew better and refused to catch them in jars like the other children would do. If I remember correctly, she said she was about 3 years old at the time.
Another memory she has is looking under mushrooms that grew in her yard and seeing the little blades of grass that bent over on each side of the mushroom; you know like those concrete tables that have an umbrella in the middle and benches around the table. Oak’s mother told her that fairies had parties at night and would sit around the benches. Isn’t that great?
The soil of the Earth was important to Oak’s mother. Her mother grew up on a farm and her family grew much of their food. Oak’s mother would work the soil in their little backyard by mixing in the compost (right from the kitchen’s green scraps) and mixing in earthworms. On weekends, they would drive around looking for houses with yard clippings out on the road. She knew that beautiful plants and trees would grow from these leftovers, discarded by others.
Oak also grew up with ducks and chickens and enjoyed their wonderful eggs. Her mother was always bringing home a stray cat or dog to live. Once, she let Oak take a fish aquarium and put two frogs in it. Naturally, before long tadpoles were everywhere and they eventually grew into frogs and footmen for princesses.
Now that Oak is a full-fledged fairy, she lives in the world she knew existed, but was always just a breath away from. She often tells us that if she had not become a fairy, it would be alright because she believed and would always believe because her human mother introduced her to the possibility of believing and encouraged her imagination. Great things grow from imagination, you know.
We fairies often watch children when no one knows and see how children find enchantment in the most obvious places and objects; however their parents often do not see the same. Expensive toys are quickly set aside for magic cardboard boxes that turn into spaceships. A game in the backyard is abandoned when a child sees a wee river of water from a garden hose, that is moving quickly and carrying blades of grass with the current. Well, everyone knows that grass blades are surfboards for fairies.
There is a special lady who creates magic from pieces of nature: nut shells that make a fairy house and stones from a river. She encourages the imagination and creativity of children AND their parents. This lady paints with the children and shows them how to color eggs and so much more. She can be found on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/joyfulartiststudio. Check it out! She posts magical and creative ideas for children. We need more humans to do this. We think that most parents do encourage their children, but the rest of the family and adult friends need to do it too. We fairies depend upon the belief that children have in us. We thrive and take great delight seeing a child’s face seeing a fairy for the first time.
Children appreciate magic and fairies. The Earth and the creatures upon it appreciate us as well. In turn, we so appreciate your children and Mother Earth and its creatures. Let’s form a circle of appreciation and work to nurture all children, the Earth and animals. We promise you will never regret it! xoxoxo
Sun Song kept moving toward Sam and the tension grew amongst everyone. Sam’s eyes were darting everywhere as he tried to not look at Sun Sung in the face; which, by the way, seemed to be changing, and changing rather quickly! Oak noticed the changing also and was wringing her hands, as Sherwood and Henry were passing looks back and forth. The two of them, if anyone was watching and thank goodness no one was, were communicating without words. As Sun Song was slowly approaching Sam, Sherwood and Henry were edging closer to her – from the back. One was moving to the left and the other to the right. Sun Song’s focus was so fiercely on Sam, she was unaware of anything. Sam was scared…all of his legs were shaking uncontrollably. Then, he was Sherwood behind the furious fairy. Sherwood was forming a word and Sam recognized it right away. W E A V E weave weave. Yes! He thought! Weave strands of silk – strong silk, so that when she approaches, he can trip her and they can tie her up with the strands. Before they knew it, Sun Song put her arm out and opened her hand to grab Sam. Just then, Henry bellowed like a bull and got everyone off guard. As Sun Song whipped around to see where the bellowing came from, Sam flung the silken strands around her ankles and her arms and then he yanked on the strands, causing her to fall on her side. She was livid and her face was quickly changing colors – BLUE – RED – YELLOW – ORANGE – BLACK – WHITE – PURPLE and on and on – every color you could possibly imagine! Everyone came running to help Sam. “Sam, make more cords so we can be sure she’s tied up securely,” said Henry. As quick as a dime twirling on cement, Sam went into action, whirling out cords and cords. Oak and Sherwood grabbed them and wrapped them wherever they could, tying up this mean, wicked being!
Suddenly, light came into the cave…light so bright and luminous that everyone was temporarily blinded by it. As they blinked and blinked, trying to get their vision back, it became clear to all where the light came from! It was Oak’s mother! “Mother, mother,” Oak ran so hard and fast to her mother that she didn’t even notice that her feet were no longer touching the ground. She was actually flying just a few inches off the ground! Mary held her arms open and tears slid down her cheeks as her daughter flew into her arms. “My darling, my darling little girl. I love you so dearly.” Oak just fell upon her mother’s lap, laughing and sobbing at the same time. She was so happy! “Mother, you cannot possibly imagine what has happened to me! You just can’t! It’s so weird, so scary and so wonderful!” Mary took her daughter’s chin in her hand and said gently, “Yes, my dear, I can. You stumbled into a part of fairy land so absolutely everything has been different for you! I’m just so grateful you are OK. You are the treasure of my life.” Mary leaned down and gently kissed Oak on the forehead.
“Now, everyone! Please step forward and let me see you!” Mary stood and as she did, the most beautiful wings ever seen unfurled from behind her back. Why, they were pink, with hints of turquoise and green and yellow. They sparkled as if diamonds lined the edges of the wings. Oak’s eyes grew so bid and she whispered, “It’s true, it’s true!” “Yes, my dear,” Mary said, “It is true. I am the Queen of the Fairies and it is time for me to take my rightful place. It is also time for you, Oak Willowglimmer, to stand and take yours’ – as Mistress of the Gardens”. Oak rose slowly to her feet, as Sherwood, Henry and Sam stepped forward and bowed to the Queen and to the Princess. Mary held her hand out and the three moved forward. Each knelt and kissed the Queen’s hand. The Queen curtsied back to each one and gave them special names. Sherwood was renamed as “Cat Sherwood, Feline of the Colony”. Henry became “Henry, Hunter of the Forest” and Sam…well, Sam became “Sam, Special Spider of the Kingdom”. “Now, my lovies,” the Queen said to all of them as she took Oak’s hand tightly in hers’, “when we get to our destination, I shall tell you everything!”
So Mary…oh! Her name is “Queen Mary Gossamer Beamfly”. So, Queen Mary Gossamer Beamfly sprinkled fairy dust on all of them and off they flew! Off they flew to the Forest of Fairies.
As for Sun Song? She disappeared! No one saw her leave or heard her leave. Just gone…
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…)