The wind blows strong outside. Little giggles heard, each sprouting from a yellow-brown leaf.
Autumn has left and now frost slowly surrounds us. Each leaf, each bark, each branch, each door, each window, each door of every house, gently covered by these miraculous things.
That was weeks back, yet the wind blows strong still, and the snow slowly piled.
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“How tides bring us together, how tides push through the weather, how tides push all the worries away, how tides never seem to stay… ” The drinking song rang through the homey cabin, sheltering all from the wretched cold outside.
“How tides never seem to stay…” Elena sang softly to herself. She looked out the window, frost crept on the windowsills, leaving the folks in this homey little cabin barely able to see the storm that rages on outside. Homey it was, and everyone hoped to keep it that way, a little beer just to keep them occupied, to keep it lively, to perhaps, forget the cold winds that howled outside. Elena didn’t feel home to this sight still, so she looked out with all that she could.
Her father was to come home this evening, he should, he promised, but the cruellest snowstorm had hit this lovely town, so she could only hope.
She did hope, with all her heart, so while the people danced and sang all their worries away, she waited.
“Elena, you know he can’t come, it’s the coldest winter in years, and the storm isn’t making it any easier-” Her mother tried talking to her, tried to explain yet once more, so Elena naively excused herself and proceeded to head back to her room.
“That little girl-” She heard her mother mutter behind her, ‘probably of her selfishness,’ she thought, ‘yet was it wrong to yearn?’
The lively song still echoed behind her, but as she closed the door, the very last bit of it was shut outside. Alone she was once more.
Yet though alone she felt, though cold was the winter outside, her room was warm, a small fireplace kept it so, she wondered if her father felt so too, her father out there… She gazed out the window once more, “Please just come back father,” she said, “Please.”
But the child knew that no one would possibly answer her prayers, so she slowly sank into her warm bed, tears trickling off her face. “You promised…”
She cried herself to sleep.
She looked up.
The gentle tap was coming from the window.
She went to it.
Nothing was there, normal window, normal windowsill, normal… everything, yet she knew what she heard.
Elena continued gazing at the window, observing it, hoping to find anything that stood out, hoping, just hoping.
And just as she was about to give up, she found the frost weaving itself to a brilliant picture, a picture of a sailor out at sea.
“Father?” Elena cried out, he could be home, he should be home, yet… She knew he was working only for their betterment… Yet… “If only I could be of help…”
Then it happened, the frost gently rose from the window, engulfing her with a brilliant white, she should be scared, freezing, yet she wasn’t, and once the white dispersed, she found herself on deck.
She saw her father, standing tall right in front of her, she went and gave him a big warm hug. She fell right through him.
Still she wished to be of help.
‘Please bring us home… ‘ She wished once more.
She was back, not them, but her, and only her.
She looked back at the frost on the window, the ship rose, and with it, a giant wave. “No-” She screamed.
Then she woke in bed.
Morning, it was early morning. The storm was over, the sun rose again. Out the window, the snow slowly melted, leaving behind but a layer of frost.
“A dream, just a dream, just a nightmare, only a-” She repeated, over and over, just to soothe herself from the terrible dream of hers.
“Elena, I have got some news for you,” Her mother said as she came in Elena’s room.
“Your father,” She paused, searching for any hint of emotion on Elena’s face, “Came back early.”
A sigh of relief.
“He was quite miraculously found on shore today, said the last thing he remembered was a wave threatening to-” Her mother paused, maybe she shouldn’t tell her daughter these things, “Well, he came back, as you wished, you should probably head down to see him, and breakfast, of course.”
She did. And she told him what she longed to tell him all night.
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A little girl laid in bed, her father holding a book before her.
He told stories of miraculous adventures, how good always triumphs, how belief always prevails, how stories lay the foundation of today…
“…So when you really hope for something in a dead winter’s day, know that the frost fairies may guide your way.”
“Father, do you believe in fairy tales? ”
“Do you? “