If you remember, Oak was sitting in her little garden at the back of her yard; drawn there by a faint flickering light that could have been a fairy! So she slipped into the garden and sat and was silent; as silent could be! Oak’s head didn’t even move when her eyes would look to the right, then to the left, above and down. Why, if you were a fly in the garden, you would not be able to hear her breathe. Then almost, as if it was always there, just barely, Oak heard “tinkling”…the tinkling of crystal or sea glass or…well, she wasn’t sure. Listening, Oak decided it was crystal AND sea glass tinkling – together, as if on a wind chime that maybe fluttered down from Heaven or fluttered up from the sea. Now Oak was well-versed in grammar and English and everything that goes with it; she knew fluttered up from the sea maybe wouldn’t make sense to everyone, but to those who mattered – it did! Anyway, the tinkling kept up and began to sound closer and a wee bit stronger – not loud (for fairies or wind chimes would never be loud), just stronger.
She went to brush a wisp of hair from her right cheek and as she did, Oak felt something and winced, thinking it might be a bug. Whatever it was, it wouldn’t really go away; it just darted from her fingers and found a different place on her cheek to make its presence known. As Oak went to swat at the bug, she suddenly thought that maybe it wasn’t a bug; it could be a fairy. “Oh my gosh”, she thought. “A fairy! A fairy,” she screamed in her head. Ah, so excited, Oak could barely sit still. But still…she sat. Listening intently, she thought she heard some faint rustling…like the rustle you hear when you open a present and it’s wrapped lightly in tissue paper. sshshhhshshew Say it quietly…shshhshshew….and as you come to the end, the shew ends almost silently. Her eyes were slowing swiveling in her head as she scanned the room. Light brush on her cheek, shshhshshew…and flickers of light, or perhaps the thought of lights; whatever, she felt, she heard and she saw everything she needed to know in her young smart mind that there was a fairy in the room. “Tap tap tappity tap tap tap,” at her shoe; she felt that on her shoe. Looking down, Oak saw the most beautiful little fairy that one could ever possibly imagine in this world or in any other world, for that matter. Taken by the magic and, oh just the magic of it all, Oak just stared at the fairy.
The fairy picked up a beautiful wind chime that looked exactly like what Oak imagined. The little thing just shook and shook that wind chime, causing the delicate crystals and sea glass to literally come alive and each crystal and each sea glass rose up, off the bark (handle) and then, as if a wizard had flipped his wand, each piece then created its own wind chime. Before Oak knew it, the garden was filled with little itsy bitsy wind chimes; not so many that you couldn’t move, but let’s say that if you were there, you would have to watch, very carefully, where you were walking, sitting, stooping or being or even standing! But what was amazing was the sound. It was the sound of crystal chandeliers and sea glass harps, all playing in tune with one another; being directed by an unseen maestro of mystical magical music. The melody seemed as if it was straight from Heaven or Fairyland and seemed so familiar, Oak was sure she knew the song, but couldn’t, for the life of her, remember it. “That’s right,” she thought, “it’s a memory, I know it is. I just can’t remember this song.”
Having traveled in her mind to the room of memories, Oak almost forgot about the wind chimes…until the room grew silent…again. She looked around and saw that the chimes had floated down to the floor of the garden…gently, like a very light snow; landing quietly and sitting still. The little fairy then flew slowly up to Oak and beat her little wings while she hovered in the air in front of Oak’s face. “Greetings, Oak Willowglimmer.” “You know my name?” Oak’s heart really began to flutter. “Of course I do. I’ve known you all your life,” the fairy said. “My name is Gossamer Beamfly and you are Oak Willowglimmer.“ At this point, let me describe the fairy. She was only four inches high and had beautiful pink hair; so pink that you would think you were looking at cotton candy. Gossamer had beautiful blue eyes with green little sparkly glitter spots in them. Her skin was a pale pale green…really just a hint of green…very light. She was indeed lovely.
Gossamer said, “I know your mother too. I know her really well.” “How do you know us?” Oak asked. “I can’t really say; just know that I do. Please don’t ask questions for my answers would only confuse you. Plus, I’m your elder.” “My elder?” Oak tilted her head and looked at Gossamer. “You can’t be older than me. You’re so tiny and young.” “Well, my dear, we fairies are like that. We appear to be young or old or whatever, but we’re really the opposite! I’m 125 years old. Just had my birthday last week.” “Oh my gosh,” exclaimed Oak. “I can hardly believe this, but wait! I do believe you, it’s just…well. It’s like I’m in the middle of a fairy tale! Really! My friends would never ever believe me.” Gossamer fluttered closer to Oak’s face and looked right in her eyes and said, “There is no reason to even tell them. The more people that know about us, the less…uh, how do I explain this. For every human that hears about a fairy, but doesn’t believe, two fairies are frozen in time, way down deep in the Honeycrooked Tree right in the middle of Greenwood Forest.” Gossamer looked sad now. Oak thought she saw a tear slip down her cheek, but it was a tiny diamond or a tear that turned into a tiny diamond that fell upon the toe of Oak’s shoe. “Oh my”, said Oak. “I’m so sorry to hear this. It just seems like everyone would believe in you and other fairies!” Right at that moment, a clap of thunder sounded and shook the canopy over the garden. Oak jumped and Gossamer began flying a circle as fast as she could – over and over and round and round, until Oak became dizzy. “Stop”, Oak whispered. She tried to yell, but her words only came out as a whisper. “It’s only thunder. Thunder cannot hurt you.” Gossamer kept flying in a circle and the tiny wind chimes were rising in the air; their crystals and sea glass clattering and chattering…nothing like earlier when they sounded like angelic harp music. The pieces of glass and crystal were flying and swinging and Gossamer was flying like a dragonfly that had lost its way and the thunder kept pounding the ground and Oak got more and more dizzy. In the background of all the clamoring, Oak could hear her mother, Mary, calling for her. Only this time, rather than the usual mother call, it sounded a little frantic. Oak called back, “Mommy, I’m here, I’m here.” “Oak, Oak, please answer Mommy! Please! Oak, Oak, come home, come home.”
Oak was feeling faint. The tinkling, the banging, the fluttering, the manic wings, circles round and round, Mommy calling…all these things were rushing through Oak’s head and then she fell – and fell and fell.
(to be continued)