The Tree

“A long time ago I remember seeing a tree,” breathed Lily. “I suppose I should say I saw a thousand trees, as the tree I saw was many trees twisted together into one. I remember how it seemed to glow. I assumed it was fireflies, but then I heard voices. Quiet, peaceful and singing voices. The longer I looked at the tree, I became aware that glow of the lights moved to the beat of the voices singing. That’s when the tears began to fall. I had always believed in fairies and the older I got, the less likely it was that they were real. Yet I still held onto the belief, because I wanted to believe. I seemed to float toward the tree. My heart willed me forward. My mind yelling at me saying that it couldn’t be true. That I should back away before my heart was crushed. But my heart, told me what I saw, what I heard, was real. That what was in front of me, was what I thought it was. That after all these years of believing, I was finally going to see a fairy.”

“Grandma? Did you really meet the fairies? Do they really exist?” Rose, Lily’s 16 year old grand daughter, asked. Rose’s mother replied, “Of course not, it’s just a story dear.”

Lily laughed and shook her head, “Ignore your mother on this subject Rose, she never did believe. Yes Rose, I did meet the fairies. The tree was beautiful up close and so were all the fairies. A group of them were singing, farther into the tree. I watched, from the outside, fairies dancing together. I saw the queen, with her king by her side, standing in front of the thrones. Then they approached me. I backed a way. I thought I might have been in trouble, for surely humans weren’t supposed to be there, or more people would believe. The queen flew out of the tree and out stretched her hand toward me. The next thing I new, I was tiny. Down by the tree’s trunk. I looked at the opening in front of me, and the then the queen who landed by my side. She stretched her hand out to me, and I took it. She walked into the tree and as she pulled me through, my regular clothes turned into a beautiful dress, a lot like what the other fairies wore. She gestured to a male and then let go of my hand. Finally I became aware to the fact that the music had stopped and all the fairies were staring at me. The male smiled at me, then took my hand and lead me to the dance floor. We stood ready, soon the music began again. We danced together and I laughed and had a great time. But the night was not to last forever. When the festivities were over, the queen approached me. She told me, that by believing I had become part fairy. That it was a gift, a fairy Queen could bestow on someone who truly believed. If wanted I could stay there with the fairies. I couldn’t. I had you aunts and uncles and your mother at home. A husband I loved very much. She told me, that she would watch my family. Keep them safe. I left, and never saw them again. But I know it was not just a dream. For when the Queen made me bigger the dress I wore that night was still on me. I still have it, though I can’t fit in it anymore. It is one of my most treasured possessions.”

Lily closed her eyes, remembering the time she treasured so much. Rose’s mother spoke up, “Come Rose, I’m sure grandma is tired. Let’s go.” Rose stood and gave Lily a huge whispering in her ear, “I believe,” before walking away. “By mother.” Soon the house was empty.

“She’s a lovely girl Lily. She’s a lot like you.”

Lily opened her eyes and smiled at the fairy in front of her. “Yes, and she wants to meet you more than anything. She’s even more of a believer than me. Please watch over her for me. I love her very much, she is my only girl grand child. So please watch over her, don’t let her stop believing.” With that Lily closed her eyes, her breathing slowly became smaller and slower, “Goodbye my friend.” she breathed, before drifting away completely. The Queen smiled a sad smile, tears falling down her cheeks,”I promise to watch over her, my dear friend. Goodbye.”