(Read the previous chapters here.) It’s been waaaay too long since I wrote a chapter for The Dust Pixies. Good gracious, it’s been more than a month! So are you ready to see what happens to Finn?
Here’s a little refresher since I posted the last part so long ago:
She had found Finn. He was bound to a tree, eyes closed in despair and exhaustion. He opened them when he heard his wife’s cry, but immediately shook his head and motioned us to stay away.
But he was too late.
The leaves above him came alive. Dozens of grim-faced fairies dropped out of the tree and in a split second we were surrounded. I gulped. Lyri squeezed my hand tightly. One of the fairies stepped towards Anabelle. He looked like the night: black hair, dark skin, snapping chocolate brown eyes, and teeth that sparkled like stars when he spoke.
“Oh goody. Just who we were looking for. My my, you don’t seem to be any the worse for wear from living inside. Just as beautiful as ever, my dear girl. But come now, your father misses you. He hasn’t seen your charming face in far too long because of this – this miserable house-dweller.” His black-velvet eyes narrowed in disgust as he spat the last few words. “You must come with us, back to your rightful place as Princess of the fairies.” He bowed low.
Anabelle’s looked just as frightened as we were. “I can’t go with you, Reuven,” she whispered. “You know that I can’t leave him now. I don’t want to come back… and… and… It’s not true. Father doesn’t miss me. I know he doesn’t.” She hid her face in her hands. “He could never love a traitor.”
Rueven patted Anabelle’s shoulder awkwardly. “Nonsense, my dear. Of course he loves you! Your father will forgive you everything as long as you come with us. But if you don’t… well, if you don’t, your dusty friend here will have to be disposed of.” He sneered at Finn. “So what do you say, Anabelle? The choice is yours.”
Anabelle’s shoulders drooped. She glanced toward Finn who was emphatically shaking his head. He would pay the price, his eyes told her. He would make the sacrifice. But Anabelle smiled sadly and shook her head back. She straightened and spoke firmly. “Let my husband go and I will return with you.”
Reuven nodded his approval. “That’s the spirit. I knew you had a wise mind to go with that lovely face.” He winked at her and broke into a gleaming smile. The other fairies untied Finn in disappointment, muttering insults, and made their way over to Anabelle.
Reuven finally glanced down at us, surprised, as if he noticed our dusty selves before. “And who are these young friends?” He asked in an oily voice. “I see you have followed the path of the traitor like both of these noble heroes?” He laughed. “Ah, well. Scurry on home, kiddies. You wouldn’t want to cause any trouble, now would you?” His mouth smiled but his eyes were menacing.
At this we all quickly stepped back. We watched in shock as they took Anabelle away. But for some reason a few of the party stayed behind, milling around beside Finn. Finally, when Anabelle was out of sight they jumped upon him and tied him up again, laughing and jeering all the time.
My heart stopped. Wait! This wasn’t right! They were supposed to let Finn go! I almost rushed out into the ring, but I decided against it. What good could one lone dust pixie do? As we looked on with sinking hearts, the fairies prodded Finn into the forest, step by painful step. Lyri was in tears beside me.
“We have to do something, Mae,” she whispered fearfully.
“I know. I know.” I stood there quietly, thinking, until I was startled by the sound of footsteps. Were the fairies coming to get us too? But before I had time to run, a face appeared.
It was as black as the night.
For a second I thought Reuven had come back, but I noticed that this was a boy, not a man.
“Hey,” he whispered hoarsely. His eyes were wide and filled with fear. “I’m on your side, okay? They’re takin’ him – Finn, I mean – back to camp. You gotta save him! I don’t know what they’re gonna do to him, but I can tell you sure, it ain’t gonna be good. I don’t dare free him myself – do you have any idea what my Dad would do to me? It’s gotta be you! Please…” The boy’s face was earnest. “I can’t stand to see innocent people get hurt – even if he is a dust pixie. All you have to do is follow the trail of scuffed-up leaves. It’ll lead you right to camp. Come on, guys, whadya say?” His wide eyes gazed at us pleadingly.
“Uh… yeah. We-we were just going to work up a p-plan,” I stammered. “Don’t worry, we’ll do it. Th-thanks for warning us. Yeah, we’ll save him.”
The boy looked relieved. “Oh boy, that’s great. Well, you gotta be quick – they’re gonna do the judgement call tomorrow morning.” He turned to leave, but shouted over his shoulder, “Oh, and my name’s Eli. Bye.”
I heaved a giant sigh. This was bad. This was too big for four dust pixies to handle by themselves. We needed help. We needed Rosalind.
Ooohh, the plot gets thicker yet! XD Thanks for reading, dear friends. 🙂