Tabatha A. Yeatts
A Tale of Faeries
by Regina, age 12
“Pip! Pip! Where are you?” called Twinkle.
Pip sighed. Twinkle was probably waiting for her to answer so he could locate her and throw rat dung at her. He can’t hit me if I get him first, she thought. Smiling to herself, she crept out of the thunderhoof stall and looked around. There he was!
A beam of sunlight came through the high opening in the wall of the wingless folk barn, illuminating dust floating in its path before striking Twinkle’s iridescent wings and splashing a rainbow of color as ornate as any cathedral window onto the hay strewn floor. Pip gazed, mesmerized, into the sparkling pool of light from his wings for a moment before scowling and reminding herself that she had an uncompleted task at hand. She slid back into the stall, grabbed a handful of thunderhoof poo, and slipped back out. Carefully taking aim, she propelled a blob at his head. “Direct hit!” she cried, jumping up and taking a victory lap around the barn.
“Aw, man!” moaned Twinkle. Just as Pip had suspected, he had been about to throw rat dung at her. He wiped off his hands on his oak leaf shirt and stuck his head in the animals’ water bucket to wash the poo off.
Pip watched as a thin stream of bubbles rose where Twinkle had submerged his head. Suddenly, the bubbles stopped, but Twinkle’s head remained underwater. Pip stiffened. It’s probably a trick, she thought, but what if it’s not? After five seconds, his head had still not broken the surface. Pip rushed to the bucket to pull Twinkle out when suddenly, his head erupted out of the water, splashing half the bucket’s contents all over her. He laughed and crowed, “See, you won the battle, but I won the war! Hey, where are you going? Pip? Pip!”
Pip stormed all the way home and lay in her maple leaf bed, staring at her ceiling of loosely woven grass blades. Chinks of the darkening sky showed through the cracks. As night fell, she thought to herself, I should have known he was pretending. Why did I try to save him? Why am I so angry he was faking it?
This last question brought a pause to her silent fuming as she searched for the answer. Suddenly, it hit her as unexpectedly as if it had fallen from the sky.
“Because I was really worried he was in trouble”, she murmured to herself in the fading light. “But why was I so worried?” The monotony of the crickets chirping outside combined with the gentle snoring of her parents in the next room was enough to lull her to sleep, but throughout the night, even her unconscious mind could find no answer.
The next morning Pip awoke to the sound of somebody clambering over her roof.
“Pip! Pip! Wake up!” hissed Twinkle.
“Go away. I’m not talking to you.”
“Aw, come on Pip, that was yesterday!”
“If you’re not talking to me, will you at least listen to what I have to tell you?”
“Okay, so here’s what happened. I had a dream last night that some guy called Rockel is going to take over Roseville and —”.
Pip rolled over in bed, vow of silence forgotten, (no one could stay mad at Twinkle for long,) and said to her ceiling, “The window’s open. You can just come in.”
“Oh.” Twinkle fluttered down to the window and squeezed in, landing with a soft thud on the floor. He brushed himself off and began pacing. “Anyway, he’s going to take over our village —”.
“Why is he taking over our village?” asked Pip.
“Because it’s the only town around Fireflies that he hasn’t captured. And in my dream—”.
“He’s trying to take over the capital, too? And why are you telling me this?”
“Because I’m trying to apologize for yesterday. As I way saying, in my dream, I found out we’re the only ones who can stop him. So what do you think?”
“I think you had some sour milk before you went to bed.”
Twinkle frowned. “But what if I’m right? That makes us heroes!”
“If we can stop him,” objected Pip. “And that depends entirely on whether your dream is right. How can you be absolutely positive you aren’t making a mistake?”
“Well, if you didn’t sleep in until 11:00 A.M., you would have heard the talk about the draft. Everyone old enough is eligible.”
“Draft? Why are they drafting?”
“I already told you. A suspected siege on Roseville. And since nobody in town knew about the draft until this morning, and since my dream happened last night, I have to be right!”
“But Roseville’s militia has never been in a battle before! They’ll get crushed!”
“Which means it’s up to us to save Roseville. Start packing. We leave at midnight.
Long after Twinkle had left, all Pip could think of was their upcoming journey and the ways it would affect their future lives.
“Psst. Psst! Pip!”
“I’m right here! Quit yer yapping. You’ll wake up my parents.”
“Oh, sorry. Are you ready? Everything packed?”
“Yeah. Did you bring a map?”
“Rhetorical question. I brought my own since I figured you forgot.”
“Well, jump out the window!”
“Okay, okay.” Pip unfurled her wings and hopped out.
Had anyone cared to watch, it would appear that Pip would soon become an unrecognizable figure on the ground below, but at the last second, her wings fluttered and shot her towards the sky.
As she hovered next to Twinkle, she stared enviously at his wings, wishing hers were not clear, but a rainbow of colors like his.
Some folk thought his name came from his beautiful wings, but Pip knew better. It had to be for his beautiful, dark blue eyes that always held a twinkle of mischief in them.
Her thoughts were interrupted by Twinkle asking, “Why are you looking at me like that?”
Pip snapped to attention and realized she had been staring at Twinkle, although she wondered whether it was because of his wings or for an entirely different reason. “Uh, well, you see...”
Her stammering was put to an end by his reply of “Whatever. We have to get as far away as we can before anyone wakes up.”
After a few minutes of travel, Pip realized they were heading towards what the part of her map she could read over Twinkle’s shoulder stated as Fireflies. “Um, Twinkle?”
“Why are we heading towards the city?”
“Because there’s no way we can stop him on our own. We have to get to the Faerie King and tell him about the situation. Hopefully, Fireflies’ militia will help us.”
“We should be there by sunrise,” said Twinkle. Four hours later, they still weren’t at the city.
“Twinkle, can’t we rest a minute?”
“Just a little longer, Pip.”
“But I’m so tired!” Pip whined.
They flew on for a few moments more, but even Twinkle couldn’t find the strength to go on. “Okay, we can rest here in this tree,” he said.
Within moments, they were both gently snoring in the cedar.
Pip awoke to find herself curled in a ball in Twinkle’s lap. he was still asleep, so Pip decided to explore their tree bed. She closed her eyes and inhaled the wonderful cedar smell. She flew to the other side of the tree, opened her eyes, and gasped. There was Fireflies!
“Twinkle! Wake up!” said Pip in a hushed voice.
“What? Wha’ happened?” asked Twinkle groggily. He wobbled up to Pip, rubbing the bleariness out of his eyes. “What?”
Twinkle turned and stared. The entire cityscape was silhouetted against the rising sun which acted as a halo, giving the city an almost holy feeling.
“It’s gorgeous, isn’t it?” breathed Pip.
“Yeah. We should get going. We have to tell the king about Rockel,” said Twinkle.
“Alright,” agreed Pip.
They each gathered their sacks and fluttered to the base of the tree.
“Come on, hurry up!” urged Twinkle. They burst through the tree line and found themselves at the gate.
Its doors were open, welcoming people to come and find a better life in a city of wonders.
Pip and Twinkle dropped to the ground and walked in.
Faeries were flying everywhere. More were walking on the ground.
Pip tapped a faerie on the shoulder. “Excuse me, can you tell us where the castle is?”
“Go away. I’m busy here!”
Meanwhile, Twinkle was having trouble as well.
“Pardon me, but could you give us directions to the castle?”
“I have other things on my mind, kid.” The stranger began walking away, but stopped and yelled over his shoulder, “Walk straight ahead. Can’t miss it.” He resumed his walking.
“Thank you!” shouted Pip and Twinkle in unison.
Sure enough, they arrived at the castle.
“Do we just walk in?” wondered Pip aloud.
“It looks like it,” answered Twinkle.
They stepped into a roomy front hall.
“How are we supposed to find the king?” asked Twinkle.
Just then, a cook waddled in with a silver platter.
“Excuse me, who is that for?” called Pip.
The cook turned around. “Why, for the king. Listen, I’m busy, could you two take this to him? He’s down that hall over there.”
“Sure we’ll deliver it,” said Twinkle.
Momentarily, Pip and Twinkle were outside the king’s throne room.
Pip took a deep breath. “Here goes nothing,” she murmured, and marched in, Twinkle trailing behind.
“No, I like the uniforms the way they are,” said the king to an advisor. He turned to glance at them, then said, “Put the food over there,” gesturing to a table in the corner.
Pip did as she was told, then turned to face the king.
“No, I like green. It blends into the background,” argued the king.
Pip cleared her throat. “Excuse me.”
The king looked over his shoulder. “What is it?”
“Roseville, our town, needs your help. You see, we are being attacked by a faerie called Rockel. His troops are aiming to take over our town because it is the only village around Fireflies that isn’t captured yet. Then he’s planning to take over the city!”
“And exactly how did you acquire this knowledge?”
“Well, sir, my friend had a dream.”
“You’re basing this on a dream?”
“Not entirely, sir. Our town began preparing a draft for a suspected attack the day after he had his dream. No one knew of the attack until after his vision.”
“So, you’re telling me that this boy had a dream, but not only that, a suspected,” he made sure to emphasize that word, “attack which may or may not be from the same person as the one in his dream are the things worrying you? Your argument is bottomless. If you can provide me with solid proof, I will dispatch my militia immediately. Otherwise, stop wasting my time.” He turned away and began arguing with his advisor again.
“Oh well. We tried our best,” said Twinkle sadly.
A groan made them all turn around. There, in the doorway, was a bloody stranger dragging himself across the floor.
The king gasped. “That’s my best scout!” He ran to his side. “Who did this to you?”
Everyone craned closer to hear his answer. A wheeze left his parched lips, then forced out a faint “Ro...ckelll” before falling unconscious.
The king turned to face his advisor. “Get this man medical assistance! Wait with him until he regains consciousness. When he does, bring me word.”
“Yes, your majesty,” he answered, then rushed off to get a doctor.
Soon, they heard footsteps in the hall outside. Several faeries came in and put the scout on a stretcher.
As soon as they were gone, the king returned to his throne. He swung around to face Pip and Twinkle. He made a steeple out of his fingertips. “Tell me more about this Rockel,” he said.
Pip steadied her dragonfly mount. Faeries used dragonflies in battle because they provided a shield from foot soldiers while allowing the riders clear blows below. Only the best of the best militaries had dragonfly steeds. Of course the king would have them.
She looked to her right and saw Twinkle. “Are you nervous?” she asked him.
He turned to look at her, and she saw the fear in his eyes.
After the scout had revived, he had given the king Rockel’s location.
Currently, they were in the front line of the king’s army. Directly across from them was Rockel’s army.
The king was periodically whizzing by in front of his troops. “Today, we fight, but not for ourselves. For all faeries, in all corners of the world!”
A roar went up from the troops.
He continued talking, but Pip no longer heard him. Instead, she was listening to the drone of his voice grow fainter as his pep talk went to the far ends of the troops, then louder as he approached the her. Loud, soft. Loud, soft.
Suddenly, it stopped. Then... “Charge!”
Both armies lurched forward, and the clash of weapons as they met sounded like waves crashing on the shore in a storm.
Pip remembered the king’s words to her. “Go for Rockel. The coward will be in his tent behind his army. We can’t hold them back forever, so make it quick.”
Pip scanned the tents from a bird’s eye perspective, looking for the biggest one. There it was! She zoomed down and dismounted. “Come out!” she yelled, her voice trembling.
The tent flaps rustled, and a young male faerie stepped out.
“Why are you doing this?” Pip asked.
“Why indeed. I guess you might call me power hungry, maybe even sadistic. But I’m doing it because you all deserve it. Bowing before a king, worshipping him like a god. Bah! I am my own master, and if you will bow to that bumbling fool you call king, then you will bow to me, if not through compliance, then through force.” His voice was musical, so different from a killer’s it was almost laughable. “And just like your king’s army over there, fighting my followers, futilely resisting,” at this he knocked her over and drew his sword, putting it to her throat, “you will die too.”
Pip squeezed her eyes shut. She could feel the cold steel on her neck, the pressure increasing. I never got the chance to tell Twinkle how I feel about him, she thought sadly. Suddenly, she heard a gurgling noise. She opened her eyes.
Looming over her was Rockel, a sword protruding from his chest. He was looking down at it in disbelief. Already a dark crimson stream was flowing from his mouth. He dropped his sword and fell to the floor as the weapon in his back, the only thing holding him up, was yanked out.
There stood Twinkle, the sword in his hand. He knelt down beside her. “Are you alr-” His sentence was cut short by a kiss. His sword clattered to the ground. He sat back. “Well, that was an interesting reaction...”
Pip smiled at him, then turned serious. “How are they doing?”
“It’s over. They surrendered!”
“How’d you know where to find me?”
“I don’t know. I just...knew.” He shrugged. “Let’s go.”
They mounted their dragonflies and flew to where the king stood observing the carnage shed before the opposing army had put up the white flag.
“Well, I sure wouldn’t have wanted that to happen in our city. Oh, by the way,” said the king, “thank you. We’ll escort you back home now that that’s over.”
What happened then?, you are frantically asking. What was next? Well, that night they were celebrities back home. Their parents grounded them for running away, of course. Parents certainly are odd creatures. You save their skins and get in trouble for it.
Anyway, the town threw a community dance in their honor. And yes, Twinkle did ask Pip to the dance.
And the morale of the story is...
How you dread those words, am I right? Guess what, I hate morals too. Authors trying to tell you how to live your life. That’s the true meaning of moral. Well, you’re just going to have to suck it up, because, being the hypocrite that I am, I’m going to give you a moral anyway. Brace yourself, here it comes. If you see an opportunity, don’t make excuses as to why you can’t take it. What do you think would have happened if Pip and Twinkle said, “We can’t go, we’d get grounded. And besides, we’ve got no evidence.”?
That’s right, you smart reader, you. They’d be fertilizing daisies, them and the rest of their town.
So next time, don’t tell yourself, “I can’t do it, I’m too short/tall/fat/skinny/insert excuse here.”
Just do it.
Return to Tabatha's main page