Phew, I’ve been posting a lot of writing lately, haven’t I? When TIWC is over my posts should get back to normal again, so enjoy the writing while you can! 😄
Are you ready to read another episode of The Dust Pixies? Grace, I used all three prompts and included “pencil” in my story.
Here’s an excerpt from the last chapter in case you need a refresher:
We all heard the lady dust pixie cry out eagerly, “Finn, is that you?”
Lyri and I looked at each other in shock and excitement. Was this success so soon?
The door opened and the beautiful dust pixie I had seen inside stood before us.
She was slender but very tall, taller than any dust pixie I had ever seen. And she was also very, very clean. I didn’t see a speck of dust on her. Though her face was crumpled with grief, her eyes were lit by hope… which quickly faded when she saw who it was standing at the door.
“Oh, it’s not Finn…” she whispered, her turquoise-gray eyes downcast. But she quickly regained her composure, ran her fingers through her chocolate curls, and smiled at us – but just with her mouth, not her eyes.
“Hello, there,” she said in a falsely cheerful voice. “We don’t get many visitors in these parts. What can I help you with, children?”
I stepped forward boldly and extended my hand. “Hello, Miss! I’m Mae, and you are…” I cocked my head questioningly.
“My name is Anabelle Rose,” the lady said softly.
“You have a lovely name,” I said politely, and I meant it. “Actually we have come to find the person you were just calling… Finn, I believe?”
Anabelle Rose started. “You came to find Finn? Then they must have sent you after all. Oh, thank you so much, my dear ones! Do come inside and I’ll tell you all I know.” Anabelle Rose ushered us through the door and into the house of a dust pixie’s dream. All our mouths dropped open in unison at the splendor before us. Now that I was inside the house, the forest wall seemed even more surreal. I saw also that a cozy fire was burning in a small stone fireplace and that the whole house was lit by a complicated system of flaming candles.
“Oh, it’s beautiful,” Lyri breathed in awe. We silently nodded our heads.
Petre had flown over to a wall and was trying to enter the forest. He didn’t seem to be making much headway. Fiona flew over to him and tapped the wall. It sounded like cardboard.
“What is this thing?” Fiona asked.
“Oh, yes,” Anabelle Rose sniffed and smiled again – this time for real. “Finn did that for me. Aren’t they beautiful?”
We oohed and ahhed in reply.
“He cut those pictures from a magazine and glued them to the wall because I love the forest. I used to live there, you know.”
And in a split second everything was changed. I gasped. Oh my. Well that explained a lot: it explained why she was so tall, and clean… and beautiful. Anabelle Rose wasn’t a dust pixie at all.
She was a fairy.
And dust pixies hated fairies with all their hearts.
We had been at war as long as anyone could remember. We dust pixies hated the fairies’ wild, forest ways, and they hated our so-called “wimpiness.” Imagine disliking someone just because they had manners enough to live inside, in the dust like decent folk! And now one of these contemptible fairies stood before our very eyes. I’d never thought I’d see the day…
The worst part was, I had actually begun to like Anabel Rose – to feel sorry for her even! Well that would end now. My eyes became icy and I spoke coldly to my friend and siblings.
“I don’t think this fairy,” I spat out the word, “will be able to help us after all. Let’s go.” Lyri and Fiona’s eyes grew round with the realization of what I had just said. A fairy! Petre was too little to understand, but he whimpered when he saw our expressions.
Anabelle Rose caught my arm. “Wait!” she cried out, sobbing, “Wait! Won’t you hear me out? Won’t you help me?” Her voice fell to a whisper. “Please. Please help me,” she pleaded. “Let me explain.” When we didn’t move toward the door, she took a deep, shuddering breath and waved us into luxurious chairs by the fire. “Sit down,” she said, “and listen to my story.”
“I grew up as a fairy, it’s true, but I always wanted to see what the inside of a house looked like. I eagerly gleaned any little scraps of information I could from my elders about humans and houses… and dust pixies. But for the most part they turned away with faces of stone and refused to reply. One day I determined to find out for myself. I crept into a crack at the side of the house and wound my way through the walls. I ended up here, in this attic. I was awestruck by the mysterious human treasures this room held, and by its resounding silence, which was nothing like the constant rustling and bird songs of the forest. I poked around for a bit, but just as I was crawling back into the hole, I heard the sound of footsteps.
“It was a boy of some sort. He was awfully dirty, but I liked him, even then.” Anabelle Rose smiled a little at the remembrance. “I didn’t know that he was a dust pixie until he came closer to the box I was hiding behind. Then I couldn’t help but gasp. Instantly the boy was on the alert. He picked up a broken, pointed thing (a pencil, I later learned) and advanced slowly toward me. I was petrified by fright; I couldn’t move a wing.When the boy reached me he just as surprised to see a fairy as I had been to see a dust pixie. We stared at each other for a long time, unsure and uncertain. Finally the boy held out his hand.
‘My name’s Finn,’ he said. ‘What’s yours?’
“After that I often crept up the attic at nights. Finn would be there waiting for me with a candle stub glowing in his hand. Together we explored every inch of this attic. We learned so much from each other – I, about the ways of dust pixies, and he, about the ways of fairies. Gradually our friendship became stronger and stronger until it ripened into love. We were married one night as the full moon shone through the attic window…” Anabelle Rose paused with a dreamy look on her face. “Of course, my parents didn’t approve of the marriage one bit. They all but cast me from their family in fact. They said I was a traitor. Maybe I am. But I did what I had to do. I married Finn, and I still don’t regret it.
“But now he’s gone,” she said, the tide of tears rising once again in her beautiful eyes. “Gone, and I don’t know if he’ll ever return. Oh please, won’t you help me? I have no one else to turn to!”
I swallowed hard and glanced at Lyri. She nodded her head ever so slightly. I felt as if I were standing on a hill, looking out to sea, and about to set foot in a ship for the very first time. I had a feeling this journey would change my life.
“We’re in,” I said.
Ooh, the plot thickens!