The three Faeries gathered at their favorite leafy glen in Brightwood Forest – Sarafeena the Pooka [M], Lemondrop the Pixie [E], and Gemma the Brownie [G]. They were happy, both to see each other and also because Sarafeena and Lemondrop had finished their magic training. But they were also sad because Gemma had just left her most recent human family. Jemima Hazelnut had been so pleased with Gemma’s household magic that she had given her a new set of clothes, and by faery tradition, that meant that Gemma had to leave. Ah well, she could always find a new family.
Suddenly, their quiet conversation was interrupted – a unicorn flashed through the underbrush, and was gone before they even realized it had been there.
“What was that?” asked Gemma.
“It looked like a horse with a horn,” said Sarafeena.
“A unicorn!” shouted Lemondrop.
Before they could get over their surprise, three strange faeries sped by, their wings a blur – “Goblins!” shouted the speeding faeries.
“What should we do?” asked Sarafeena.
“Run away with them!” exclaimed Gemma.
“No, we should find the goblins,” stated Lemondrop.
So the three friends set off down the path, Sarafeena running along on her quick feet, Lemondrop flitting on her pixie wings, and Gemma stumping along behind.
They soon came to a bird’s nest lying on the forest floor. The mama bird was crying plaintively from the treetop. Her nest had apparently been knocked down, perhaps by the goblins. The nest was heavy – full of eggs – how would the faeries return it to the treetop? Sarafeena changed into a small bird, while Lemondrop used her pixie dust to make Gemma fly, although the pixie dust would only last for a minute. Quickly working together, they struggled to lift the nest to the top of the tree – with Lemondrop even needing a bit more pixie dust for the final few feet. The mama bird was so happy that she gave each of the faeries a boon – a promise of help for the future.
Continuing down the path, the faeries heard something shouting – it seemed to be coming from under a leaf. It was! Under the leaf was a small ladybug, upside down, her stubby legs waving wildly. “Help, help!” the bug shouted. Sarafeena and Lemondrop flipped the bug over.
The faeries asked the ladybug what had happened. “Something knocked me over!” she replied.
“What knocked you over?” asked Gemma.
“I don’t know,” responded the bug.
“Goblins?” asked Lemondrop.
“Yes, yes, a goblin…” wailed the bug. “And it was carrying something big.”
“What was it carrying?” asked Sarafeena.
“I don’t know,” the bug replied. “I couldn’t tell. So, what are your names?”
The faeries introduced themselves. “Ah, Feenasara, Magog, and Orangecandy, very pleased to meet you.” Sarafeena, Gemma, and Lemondrop shouted their correct names. “Yes, yes, Feenasara, Magog, and Orangecandy, just like I said. I will remember your names forever. Thank you so much for your help!” Still muttering to itself, the bug shuffled off into the gloom.
Next, the anxious faeries saw a fox, pacing around the forest. The fox looked nervous and sad.
“What’s wrong?” asked Gemma.
“My trees! I can’t hide anymore,” said the fox. Looking around, the faeries saw a strange sight – some of the trees had completely lost their color – they were simply pale wood – the leaves, the bark, everything.
Just then, there was a strange wailing sound – it was coming from further down the path, and sounded like a small child crying.
“Hurry!” shouted Lemondrop. Running down the path, they soon ran into a small human child. She was crying…”Oh dear, oh dear!”
“What’s the matter,” asked Sarafeena.
Looking up, the child suddenly noticed that they were faeries. “Oh, faeries! How exciting. What are your names?” The three friends introduced themselves.
“And what is your name?” asked Gemma.
“I’m Spanky Rosebottom!” replied the girl eagerly. “Come on, you’ve got to help us!”
Leading the faeries through the trees, they came into the clearing with the log house. Immediately, they noticed the problem – just like the trees – the house had no color. The walls and the roof were both a boring, uniform shade of “wood”.
“It’s like that throughout the town!” exclaimed Spanky. “Can you get our colors back? My mommy and daddy are so sad…”
Lemondrop nodded vigorously: “We should help them!”
“But how?” asked Sarafeena. The faeries fluttered about, confused.
“The wizard!” shouted Spanky. “You need to go to the town and find the wizard. He lives in the tower.”
“How far is the town?” asked Sarafeena. “Should I use my travel magic?”
“Oooo,” said Spanky. “It’s only about 50 feet away, through the trees. Good luck. Bye. I’ll make you some oatmeal if you find our colors!” Spanky quickly disappeared into her house.
Continuing down the path, the brave adventurers came to the sad town. The buildings were all the same boring brown, just like the log house. It must have been such a pretty town before, now it was just drab. In the center of the town was what must be the wizard’s tower.
The faeries could tell this, because the wizard was standing on the top of his tower, shouting out a spell…
“I, Copper Moonglow, cast this spell – restore the color to this town, right now!” He waved his magic staff hopefully. With a loud bang! a small splotch of green appeared on the corner of one house. “Hmmm, didn’t work so well” he muttered.
“We’ll help!” shouted the three faeries.
“Well look here, faeries” exclaimed the wizard. “And who might you be?”
The faeries introduced themselves. The wizard muttered to himself. “Where was I? Ah yes, you must help us get the paint back. I can give you a bit of magic.”
“Lemondrop, this will make something shrink to the size of a peanut”, and he whispered a magic word in Lemondrop’s ear. “And Sarafeena, this will cause someone to fall fast asleep”, and he whispered another magic word in Sarafeena’s ear. “And what about you?” he asked Gemma.
“Nope, no thanks!” exclaimed Gemma.
Copper Moonglow shrugged. “The goblins went that way,” said the wizard, and he pointed down the path into Brightwood Forest.
“But that’s where we came from!” said Sarafeena. “Okay, think, was there a fork in the path?”
The three faeries looked at each other blankly. “Uhhhhhh, I think I remember another path, by a bramble bush?” said Gemma hesitatingly.
Shrugging their shoulders, the faery friends set off back down the path, the wizard happily waving to them from within his tower. The faeries soon came to the bramble bush, where they came upon a large brown bear.
“Nothing but brambles,” groaned the bear, munching another mouthful.
“You shouldn’t eat those!” shouted Gemma. “They’re really bad for you.”
“That’s all I’ve got,” said the bear sadly. “The goblins took my blueberries.”
“I’ll make you some!” piped up Lemondrop. Using her pixie dust, she conjured up a nice batch of blueberries. The bear was so happy as he munched up his berries. “Here,” he grunted. And he gave Lemondrop a magic stone. “This might help.”
Gemma was right – there was another path, right through the brambles. The path didn’t appear to be used very often, although Gemma could tell that someone or something had recently crashed through the brambles. Following the new trail, the faeries marched ahead, until they stopped suddenly. Someone was up ahead, and he wasn’t happy.
“That old Snarly,” a voice muttered. “Leaving me behind with my sore foot. Stupid Snarly Fatpants.”
The faeries whispered anxiously. Then Sarafeena changed into a tiny ant, and snuck quietly up a tree. Walking around the tree, she looked down to see a very cranky goblin, with greasy hair. He was sitting against the tree, and had his boot off so he could massage his smelly foot. In front of the goblin was an enormous bottle of what looked like red paint. Red paint that might have recently been on the side of a house.
The goblin continued to mutter. “Me, Spigot Snaggletooth, left behind with this huge bottle and a sore foot.”
Sarafeena went back to her friends and reported what she had seen. “I know,” said Lemondrop. “I’ll make the paint bottle disappear and then reappear by us!” Using her pixie dust, with a lot of luck, she did just that.
“Hey! Somebody stole my paint!” shouted the goblin. “Come back here!” The goblin ran around in circles, trying to find his missing bottle. Gemma, seeing her chance, turned invisible, snuck up behind the goblin, and gave him a big pinch.
“Owww!” the goblins shouted, spinning around. He was coming closer and closer to where the faeries were hiding. Sarafeena thought quickly, then changed into a huge three-foot ant, and charged the goblin.
“Ahhh!” screamed the goblin. “A giant ant! Run!” The goblin turned and bolted down the path.
The faeries discussed their options. Lemondrop wanted to bring the red paint right back to the girl, Spanky Rosebottom. But then they remembered that Spanky had said her house was green. There must be more paint with the other goblins. After hiding the paint bottle under a pile of leaves, the faeries followed the goblin. He was easy to spot, for he was limping along, talking loudly to himself. “Oh boy, I’m in trouble now. I lost the paint.”
“Halt!” shouted a voice further ahead. “Password?”
The faeries heard the goblin speak – “Oh hi Stinky,” he said. “The password is smelly turnips.”
The faeries tried to sneak past the guard – Lemondrop used her pixie magic to let Gemma fly, while Sarafeena changed into a small bug.
“Halt! I see you there pooka.” Sarafeena saw that a large skunk was staring straight at her. Lemondrop and Gemma swooped down to help. The skunk looked up – “Ah ha! Two more faeries. Password?”
The faeries thought. “Um, smelly turnips?”
“Right!” said the skunk, and he stepped aside to let them by.
Rushing on, the faeries saw a huge cliff rising up in front of them. They could just see Spigot the goblin disappearing over the top. Thinking quickly, Sarafeena changed into a large eagle, while Gemma and Lemondrop climbed aboard. Rising up over the cliff, the faeries saw that at the top there was a flat area with a small cave. Standing in front of the cave were two goblins, obviously having an argument.
“Sorry Snarly, I didn’t mean to lose the paint. But there was this huge ant, and then someone pinched me.”
“You fool!” shouted Snarly. “What are we going to use to decorate our cave?”
Looking into the cave, the three faeries could see boxes and barrels, as well has four large bottles filled with paint – green, yellow, darker green, and red. It must have been the missing colors!
Just then, Snarly noticed the circling eagle. “Ack! Spies!” He pulled out a bow and shot an arrow. The arrow sped towards Sarafeena – she quickly used her magic – the arrow whooshed by her ear, barely missing.
The goblins were busy digging around in the cave for more arrows. They had thrown everything out of the cave into a heap, including the paint bottles. The faeries landed on the cliff. Quickly, Lemondrop said the magic words the wizard had given her. Two of the paint bottles instantly shrank to the size of peanuts. But the other two remained full size.
Running towards the goblins, Sarafeena said her magic words. Snarly staggered backwards, “I feel sooo sleeeeeepy” he yawned, and then collapsed in a heap. Spigot stared at his goblin friend. “Snarly, wake up, quick!” Finally, Sarafeena used almost all of her magic to change into a mountain lion. Her magical powers were running low. If she used any more magic, she would fall into a deep sleep. It was time to recover the paint. Sarafeena charged at Spigot.
“Aaaaaaa! A mountain lion!” Spigot leaped backwards, grabbed Snarly, and raced for the edge of the cliff. He jumped, crashing through the treetops. The faeries heard Snarly, who must have woken up, shouting at Spigot. Then their voices faded into the distance.
Gemma looked at the two remaining huge paint bottles. “Lemondrop, why don’t you use your pixie dust to make them really light to carry?”
“Good idea,” said Lemondrop. With all four bottles safely secured, the three friends set off back towards town. Stopping to recover the buried bottle of red paint, they were able to convince the bear to carry it back to town. The little girl, Spanky Rosebottom, ran to meet them. “Hurray!” she shouted. “You did it!”
The wizard was stunned that they had made it back so quickly, and with all of the town’s missing colors. “You are heroes!” he exclaimed. “As a reward, you are each now a Knight of Brightwood Forest. The faerie queen herself will hear about this, and perhaps one day soon you will be able to meet her!”