Wednesday, September 2, 2015

To the Fairyland

Far away in the wild meadows there were two houses just beyond the green fields, just beside the great mango tree. The village folk, who lived the other side of the fields say that, that mango tree was the first one ever. It was very big and very wooded and casted large black shadows.  The place nearby was filled with fallen ripe mangoes and anyone could just pick those. They were big, juicy and ripe mangoes. The mangoes which were plucked were all very sour and gave bad stomach aches for weeks together. So the villagers realized it was better to wait for the fruit to fall and thus no one ever climbed that tree.

Of the two houses near the mango tree, one was mansion while the other, although a little small was a cozy little home, where little Rohan lived, and everyone called him Ro.

One day the family in the mansion invited everyone to a party since they were blessed with a little baby girl, whom they called Maggie. And  Ro’s family was invited too since they have always been amicable neighbors. As Ro was still learning to walk Ro’s father was carrying him, and when it was time for a drink he put him down on the floor near the white cradle draped in black velvet, where the baby was hosted. And Maggie, who has been crying all the time stopped as soon as she grabbed the finger offered to her by the curious Ro. And all through the party Ro was standing at cradle holding the baby Maggie’s little hand, for Maggie cried whenever Ro was not in sight. The elders laughed a great deal. And in all this din made Maggie and Ro fall asleep. While Maggie slept clutching Ro’s hand, Ro slept leaning on the support staff of the cradle.


“Dad, could you please talk to the peacock king and ask him for two feathers, and take him if he gives it happily?” asked Maggie earnestly, clinging to her Dad’s leg as he was about to leave to work.

“What for?” said her dad, with eyes so wide and bright.

“Ro says that’s the payment which we need to do to enter the fairyland”

He kissed the little girl on the top of her head and ruffled her hair, “I’ll try and get it sweetheart.”

“But please make sure they are happy feathers.”

And she waited patiently for Ro to return from school because her mom said she can’t go to school yet. She didn’t understand why, “But Ro’s mom lets him go.”

“My silly sweety, that’s because he’s two years older than you.”

“What’s older, mom?”

“It’s like taller. You can start your school when you are as tall as Ro.”

Maggie flipped a bucket and stood on it, “Now I think I’m taller than Ro, mom.”

“Oh! Do you, my sweet little witch,” saying which she tickled Maggie and they both laughed.


And Maggie sat, with an eager face, waiting in front of their yard from where the path leads to the village. Ro came back in the afternoon and she ran to him to tell him that her dad promised to bring her the peacock feathers.

“Oh, no, you can’t do that.”

“But why? she asked with her lips pouting.

“Because the peacock king needs to give you his feathers himself, otherwise they won’t work.”

She almost made a crying face and before she would burst out, Ro said “I’ll take you to the peacock-king who gave me the feathers, but you need to ask him yourself. Don’t worry, he’s the best peacock-king ever.”

They went near the Mango tree where a peacock lived and after bowing to him, Ro nudged a scared Maggie towards the peacock king.

“Dear sir, can you give me two feathers, just like you gave Ro.”

“I’m sorry, little child, but I can give only two feathers only once in three months. And I’ve already given them to Ro.”

And then Maggie began crying and Ro joined her as well.

It was too much for the peacock king to witness two little kids crying, “Don’t worry children, I’ll ask a friend of mine to come here and give his feathers.”

Maggie lightened up, but she scrunched up her face in a visible doubt, “But Ro said only those feathers given by a happy peacock-king would work.”

“That’s true my child.”

“But you’re the peacock-king.”

“Every peacock is a peacock-king, now come near me.”

Just as the peacock king readied himself to call his friend, he shook his head and said, “Oh, wait, I’m sorry my dear. I can’t do that.”

With an incredulous look, pulling up her upper lip, Maggie asked, "But why, sir?”

“You have this smell, my dear. The smell people acquire when they stay indoors most of the time. That smell makes the happy feathers become normal and therefore, they don’t work. But you don’t worry you’re still but a bud, from now you can spend more time in the woods and get yourselves rid of that smell. And then come back to me.”

And presently Maggie burst into tears, sobbing uncontrollably. And Ro, with a pitiful face, and a helplessness uncharacteristic of his age, said, “Please sir, Maggie is a really good girl. She shares her candy with me. Although she hits me sometimes I don’t really mind. And she waits for me to come back from my school.”

“Oh, dear child. There’s another way, a new currency actually, introduced because they felt there are many good people who spend their lives locked in their rooms. But you’re too young. I can’t tell you that.”

“What is young sir?” asked a confused Ro.

Suddenly finding a chance to display her newfound knowledge, Maggie wiped her tears and with a newfound enthusiasm, said, “It’s-it's, like-ah-like, peacock-king thinks you’re not tall enough to do that, am I right sir?”

“But you’re very short too,” said Ro addressing both Maggie and the peacock-king.

And the peacock king said in a louder voice, “I’m tall for my species.”

Maggie and Ro backed away scared by the voice. And the peacock king felt bad for scaring the kids, “I’m really sorry children. It was odd. It’s just that I don’t like being called short. Come here Ro I’ll tell you the other way. But will you do it for her, for she is even younger than you.”

And as Ro went near the peacock king, he told the other way.


One Day Maggie and Ro asked their parents to take them to the next village with them. And Maggie’s dad and Ro’s dad agreed after they made a lot of promises that they won’t bother their parents during meal times, and eat whatever they were asked to eat, and won’t be running away from milk every morning. That village was a little bigger than their own hamlet. It has a golf club and railroad. So they Maggie, Ro and their dads started in Maggie Dad’s car.

Once there Maggie and Ro started running away in the golf club while their dads played golf. And after some time they went to the edge of the club which had wild bushes and trees and just across it a railway line.

“Peacock king said, there’s a new currency introduced along with the happy peacock feathers. Instead of the feathers, now they can give coins. But not just any coins. Only those coins which are flattened in between the rails and wheels of a train on a railroad.”

Ro placed two coins on the rails and waited for a train to come. He adjusted it several times before he thought he heard the sound of something coming. Maggie was excited as well as scared, she never saw a train. And when it finally came, she first hugged Ro very tightly for she was scared, but after watching a few cars of the train pass by her fright left her and she was all giggles. And they got two perfectly flattened out of shape coins.

“But we only have two, what if we want more?” asked Maggie.

“We just need two coins. I can pay feathers and you can give these coins. Once we go there we don’t need anything. Once we go there we won’t be forced to eat lunches and dinners. There we can eat all the candy we want and there is no boogeyman there. And that place is monster free.


Equipped with the currency, they went to peacock-king and showed him the coins, who taking a look at those the said, “These are perfect. Now you can go.”

“But how do we go, from where?” asked Ro.

“Why from this very mango tree, of course. This is the first mango tree ever, brought into this world by me, accidentally, of course. And ever since it became a portal for beings of your world and I the guardian of it,” seeing their confused faces the peacock-king laughed and said, “I suppose you don’t understand what I said. Anyway, knock the tree respectfully and request it for an entry.”

Maggie and Ro knocked on the old bark of the tree twice and requested loudly and earnestly that they want to come in. A large swing made of plants and leaves came down and knocked the kids on to it and took them up into the foliage. 

There was a squirrel there standing who made a whistling sound and the swing stopped. She stretched her hand, asking for the payment and Maggie and Ro gave them their respective payments. She sniffed the feathers and nodded, that they were, in fact, happy feathers. And then she scrutinized the coins to her satisfaction and putting them into separate pouches made of leaves, she whistled again and the swing went up, up and up. Maggie and Ro, enclosed by a bucket of leaves were frightened as they went up and they closed their eyes.

And when they opened their eyes, they weren’t in the swing anymore. They were on the solid ground. There was a chirping noise and they turned to see what the noise was.

“Hello,” chirped a little excited blue fairy, whose wings were buzzing continuously.


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