“If you eat a faerie’s glamour, you become pudding and the faerie will slurp you all up,” Daisy said, hands on her hips. “Everyone knows that!” The boys looked up from digging a hole in the school yard, frowning at the girl with pink-ribboned pigtails.
“No one knows that, cause it ain’t true,” Jacob said, rubbing his cheek. “Are you gonna go find a better digging stick or what?”
“Isaac you’ve heard that story haven’t you?” she asked the other boy, crossing her arms.
“Sure I heard it,” he said, scraping dirt away from the sides of the hole to free a half-stuck earthworm. “Doesn’t mean I believe it.”
“Well it’s true,” she huffed, stalking away from them towards the oak tree. As she marched by the rosebushes, the girl sitting there by herself looked up from her book, but Daisy breezed past without a second glance.
She was used to being overlooked. Her mousy brown hair didn’t draw attention to her like Daisy’s fiery red hair. No one commented on her plain linen dresses, or complimented the white woolen sweaters she wore to conceal the swallowtail butterfly wings that grew out of her back. Only her bright blue eyes, an icy color like a cloudless sky at high noon, commanded any notice. It had been a source of amusement for the other kids at first, but after a week or two, their minds became fixated on other things, as kid’s minds are wont to do. It was in this way that a faerie girl could go to school with human children.
To get home, she at first walked along the roads of Teynbourgh, a dusty little farming town tucked away in the Western Prairie. Near the northern edge of town a dense grove of trees grew up out of nowhere, surrounding a small pond. Once inside the dense tree line, she peeled off the woolen sweater and shook out her wings, grateful to have them free once again. She happily bounced along the path, her wings propelling her nearly up to the tree canopy.
“How was school, Lucina?” her mother asked as she entered the small thatched house on the pond.
“A girl at school told stories about us, at playtime,” she answered. Her mother turned around, eyebrow raised. “She tried to convince two boys that we turn humans into pudding with our glamour and slurp them up.”
“Oh really,” her mother mused. The pink ribboned pigtailed girl had not been kind to her Lucina. “Well perhaps it’s time to make … a friend.”
The next day Lucina sidled up to Daisy at playtime before the boys had found her. “What do you want, Lucy?” the girl asked, frowning at the girl’s plain clothes, clearly far inferior to her city-bought dress.
“You were right, yesterday. About faeries,” Lucina answered.
“I know I’m right!” Daisy said, bristling.
“But I can prove it,” Lucina answerd, blue eyes sparkling. “There is a party this evening. In the grove. Come with me, and we’ll show the boys they really do turn you into pudding.” Daisy’s eyes went wide and she grinned, agreeing immediately. The rest of playtime, she played with Lucina in the dirt, shunning the boys.
That evening, Lucina led the girl to her grove, approaching the pond cautiously. Inside, her mother and sisters and aunts flew and flitted around the pond, whose trees were full of twinkling lights. Daisy gasped as a faerie flew by her face, wings flapping so fast it was hard to tell their color.
“There, see that table there?” Lucina whispered. “The one with the cakes? That’s glamour! Stay away from that one!”
“What about the fruit table?” Daisy whispered back, her eyes hungry. Lucina smiled.
“That one’s okay,” she answered. “Go, try some! Bring me some strawberries!” So the girls gorged themselves on berries and kiwis, until it seemed to Daisy it might be time to go home.
“Let’s go back, Lucina,” she said.
“You can’t,” Lucina answered.
“Why ever not?” Daisy asked, frowning.
Lucina carefully peeled off her sweater, revealing her great yellow and black wings. “Because you’ve eaten glamour. Except we don’t turn you into pudding. If you go outside those trees, you turn into dust. You’ll turn into dust and you’ll blow away.”
Daisy shrieked and ran away from Lucina, and as soon as she passed the trees, she dispersed into dust and flew away. And that is why Teynbourgh is so dusty, and the grove so green.