Excerpt from Chapter 17: “The Guardian” by Tracy M. Kubiayk

First Serial Rights © Tracy M. Kubiayk

Read time: 8 min.

As Billie made her way down the new road, she thought about what she had learned.

I have the ability for astral travel. That’s what Thanos said. He was a very nice man. Hopefully, I’ll learn more about that. But what brought me here in my dreams? Before I even got Mom’s letter and found out I was part-Fairy, someone was actually trying to communicate with me. Maybe it was one of Mom’s friends here in Fairy. Who would want me to come here? Helena talked about many Fairies. Priestesses, teachers, and wow, a queen and king, totally cool. It could have been anyone. I need to find out who. I hope I have enough time to figure it all out.

She looked up at the lavender sky and counted five moons. She still had plenty of time. The vionberries seemed to be working. Her internal clock, connected to her own world, was telling her it was nearly time for lunch. As delicious as the berries were, a sandwich wouldn’t be bad.

The road led her to another path which veered left. Otherwise, she could continue straight ahead. She took the road leading left, but the key warmed up. She pulled it out. Glowing, it pointed back to her initial path. She followed.

A very light breeze brought a fragrance like newly mowed lawn, flowers, and a fresh earthy scent. The air smelled like it was about to rain.

A soft haze blended with the landscape ahead. Similar to the atmosphere behind the lake, a mist hovered, but lighter. The lake was far behind. Billie was curious what she would see next.

A tree stump and a few logs positioned like park benches came into view on the right side of the path. Past a few more logs and a short picnic table was a small pond covered with the cloudy essence. She lay down on her stomach. Scooping pond water, it tasted crisp and clean, fantastic.

A bird called loudly, singing from a nearby tree. Chirping short, high pitched notes, another bird answered. Billie sat back to relax for a minute. A delightful crimson cardinal flew past her. With a dainty landing, it ended up on a branch to a vionberry bush. Another dark red cardinal swooped by. The two birds flew up into the hazy sky. Down again they came, one after the other. Diving here and there into the pine trees, up toward the sky, then down again, through more branches, they flew laps around Billie. They weren’t very small cardinals, but they must have been baby brothers, because they were playing like children. Billie, smiling brightly, wanted to watch them all day long. They must have done fifty laps before another light breeze blew through, clearing most of the mist.

Across the small pond an enchanting botanical garden appeared. Behind that, a large field of flowers was revealed as the breeze blew away more mistiness. But the most amazing thing she saw were tiny lights flittering around the flowers and through the air. They looked like fireflies, but they didn’t blink out and on like them.

She stood up to walk around the pond and get a closer look. They weren’t bugs at all. They were sprites. They flew around her, playing with her hair. She giggled.

The garden was amazing. She recognized flowers from every season back home: sunflowers, roses, daylilies, daffodils, pumpkins, and many wild flowers. There were some white blooms that looked like bloodroots, but they were as tall and large as the sunflowers. A few sprites played and worked around the garden, but most of them shimmered around the field of poppies. It was the most magickal place she could ever imagine. But this was not a daydream, Billie knew this was another blessing to love in Fairy.

And then, there she was: the same little sprite Billie had thought she saw the past June in her garden on Cottage Hill. It twittered like a humming bird in front of her face. It, she, seemed to be talking to Billie; but the pitch was so high, miniature, it was impossible to understand.

Another girl, and a boy sprite, danced above Billie’s head. They sprinkled her with a sparkly powder that made her sneeze.

“I’m Thistle, a flower sprite. How’s your garden, Billie?”

“I knew I saw you!,” she exclaimed. “Hi, Thistle. My garden is nice. Thank you for your help.

“What did they sprinkle on me?”

“Fairydust.”

Billie pulled out her velvet pouch.

Thistle nodded, understanding that Billie had some of her own fairydust.

“You weren’t so shimmering bright in my garden as you are now. Everything in this land sparkles!”

“Well, yes. I appear as an apparition in your realm. Astral travel, it’s an innate ability for sprites. We don’t use the portals.”

A group of sprites, five on each side, carried a basket through the air and lowered it to the ground by Billie’s feet. It was filled with nuts and fruit.

“For you, Billie,” said Thistle.

“Thank you,” she replied, sitting down to eat her welcomed lunch.

“It’s so beautiful here.”

“Thank you,” said Thistle. She flew to a rock next to Billie and knelt down, sitting on her tiny feet. She wore a cute light green sundress with pink teardrop crystals hanging from the collar. Her delicate wings were sky blue, touched with pink circles near the middle. Her wavy hair was also a pinkish color. All the sprites had Fairy ears and green eyes.

Another sprite flittered over to Thistle, kissed her on the cheek and waved to Billie.

“Hello, there.”

The sprite flew to an adjacent tree stump and rested, stomach and head down while her little legs hung over the edge. Her wings, a glittery mint green, slowly opened and closed. It appeared to be nap time for this little creature.

“She’s napping, to travel to your realm,” said Thistle, confirming what Billie wondered.

Some sprites wore small flowers, upside down, as hats. Some were boys and some were girls. A few flew around, dropping seeds here and there, while others relaxed on a branch or played together in the plants and flowers. A tiny, bright pink butterfly rested in the palm of a girl sprite. She seemed to be talking to the butterfly.

Billie munched on some cashews, enjoying everything around her. The basket they gave her was filled with grapes, vionberries, an apple and two large leaves. One leaf held a mixture of raisins and nuts. The other leaf held a handful of sunflower seeds. She ate everything, and it was all delicious. She didn’t even miss her favorite peanut butter and strawberry jelly sandwich.

After admiring all the botanical plants and flowers, she looked behind her, turning her attention to the expansive field of flowers. Not only were there red poppies, but many pink tea roses occupied the space. Sprites glowed here and there, over and across the acres of flowers that grew on into the light mist.

“Why do you care for so many poppies?” she asked Thistle.

“For the fairydust, silly. Don’t you make fairydust?”

“No. Theena gave me my pouch. I haven’t been here very long. I’m on my initiation.”

“Will you be a priestess?”

“Probably Guardian.”

“Of course. Then you’ll definitely learn how to make fairydust. We use pollen of the poppies and pink roses, as well as a powdery sand from a certain stone.”

“I’m learning a lot already. I know the purple vionberries work time magick to help crossovers not to loose track of time that moves so differently in Fairy, or fall asleep and totally loose track of my earthly time.”

“That’s right, but if you sleep, eat some more right away when you wake up. Did you know they can have protection and healing properties, too?”

“Vionberries can do all that! And fairydust puts people to sleep, doesn’t it?”

“Kind of,” said Thistle. “It won’t put you to sleep while you’re in Fairy.”

“That’s true, I’m not asleep, and they sprinkled me. But it puts trolls to sleep, right?”

“Yes, that’s right.”

“What else does fairydust do?”

“Well, without a spell it does that and of course works to let you hear me. It can also help speed up healing. With a spell, or if it’s used as an ingredient in certain spells, it can do all sorts of things.

“Like what?” Billie asked, wanting to learn as much as she could.

“It can be a medicine, or vitamin for flowers.”

“Cool.”

“Cool,” Thistle imitated.

It was such a lovely place, Billie didn’t want to leave right away. She helped herself to another drink from the pond. Though her feet didn’t hurt at all, surprisingly with all the walking she’d been doing, she soaked them in the pond. The soft water felt rejuvenating.

While relaxing in the garden with Thistle, she thought things over. With her magickal key guiding her, the initiation wasn’t as difficult as she thought it would be. She trusted her instincts and her intelligence. The hardest parts were the walking and the unknown. Yet, if she wanted to finish her initiation and find out who had called her to Fairy, she might need more time. However, she didn’t want her Grandma to worry.

She explained her situation to Thistle. “I must figure this out.”

“That is curious,” said Thistle.

“It happened before I knew about Fairy. I don’t think this is part of my initiation, but I really need to figure this out. My Grandma will peer into the well to see my progress, I’m sure.” She paused. “Would it be wrong, I wonder… I am allowed, but she will worry and wonder so. Would it be possible for you to sprinkle Grandma with fairydust so she can sleep long and not worry about me?”

“Grandmothers do worry a great deal. How long?” asked Thistle.

“I need just one more day, I think. I might be able to do it all by dusk, hopefully. I just want to be sure.”

“Okay, no longer than one day, Billie. Stop at this garden on your way back today. If you’re not back by dinner, I’ll travel to Cottage Hill. I will watch over your Grandma until you return or until she wakes. One day.”

“Thank you so much, Thistle. She has a lot of confidence in me and will be expecting me to finish by dusk, or moonfall as you say. She usually naps after she eats, so this will work out.”

“But, be careful. You can come back here at night to sleep. Just in case some law breaking troll is about—you’ll be safe here.”

“Oh, thank you again.”

“It’s okay. I understand. We sprites live to love all life. You love your grandma and don’t want her to worry. I’ll take care personally, and I’ll check on your garden again.”

“Wonderful. I’m off.”

Billie waved goodbye to all the sprites and went on her way.

THANK YOU FOR READING

Artwork found on pinterest: Fairy Ballet by Garry Walton

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