Once upon a time, a tiny fairy named Twinkly lived in Mrs. Benson's front garden. A few inches beneath the dirt, just under an evergreen shrub, was a trap door made of popsicle sticks. A tiny leather loop provided a handle for Twinkly to lift her door and scurry down the earthen stairs to her little home. On tiny pegs made of twigs scattered on the wall, she stored her lovely gowns. Further in, she had a walnut shell bed, with cottonwood down for softness, a calico scrap of fabric for a bed sheet and a blanket woven from the soft leaves of day lilies. With a neat stack of matchboxes for a chest, Twinkly kept bracelets made from spider webs, boas made of dandelion fluff, and acorn cap hats adorned with dried posies.
Her life was pretty, neat and ordered and her very best friend was a snail named Sue. Sue possessed a vivid imagination and often told stories late at night (when fairies dance and play). Under the nasturtiums, next to the warm brick of the chimney, Twinkly stood by Sue, listening attentively to her tales. Sue was quite content. She was a one-friend snail. Twinkly, on the other hand, longed for a fairy friend and her longing caused her to explore the garden every night. Sue pouted when Twinkly didn't appear to listen to her stories, but Twinkly's great need for fairy companionship outweighed her desire to please pouty Sue.
One morning at dawn, just before the milkman came and the newspaper delivery man began his zoom around the neighborhood, Twinkly approached a fat robin who happened to be pulling long earthworms from the moist green grass.
"Mr. Bird, when you are flying about the neighborhood, do you ever see other fairies nearby? "
The bird slowly turned his ruffled head to meet her gaze.
"I do. I would like to introduce you to a sweet fairy down by the park, but you must make it worth my while. What can you do for me?"
"I could prepare a birdseed cake for you. I make a nice thistle tart, too."
The bird moved closer, making Twinkly feel quite uncomfortable.
"You aren't the only lonely one, little fairy. I would treasure your companionship every so often. If I take you to meet a fairy friend, I would like the pleasure of your company on other occasions. Another thing - are you friends with that juicy headed snail?"
Because Twinkly was SO eager for a friend, she agreed to keep the bird company. However she was quite ill at ease when Mr. Bird mentioned Sue's juicy head.
"Her head is actually quite dry. She is old and tough and often rather mean."
She hoped it was the right thing to say. She did not want to jeopardize Sue's safety.
"Meet me tomorrow. I'll wait for you by your little trap door."
When Twinkly reported her conversation to a slightly miffed Sue, Sue warned Twinkly.
"You KNOW birds are predators. You tempt him with birdseed cakes and thistle tarts when he'd really like to peck my head!"
"He's going to take me to meet another fairy. I feel sure she longs for a friend, just as I do."
"Humph! What am I besides a tempting dish to your friendship messenger?"
"I'm sorry, Sue. I love you. I will be your friend forever. Please support me in my quest for a fairy friend. You may wish to add another fairy to your friendship circle as well!"
Sue ducked her head inside her shell. The conversation ended. Twinkly backed away, opened her trap door, lightly stepped down into her cozy house and went to bed to dream of fairy fun and a promised adventure.