It wasn’t the first time that my mom threw a plate at me, it was the first time I threw one back at her. I didn’t want to find out what she was going to throw at me next, and that’s why I ran away from home.
Running out the back door, I could still hearing her screaming, so I kept running. I ran through the backyard, and into the woods behind our house. Tears blurred my vision, and I didn’t stop until I couldn’t hear her screams.
I finally looked around me, and away from the streetlights and porch lights, it was the darkest night I had ever seen. I could only see the faint grey shapes of trees.
I was lost, and as much as it frightened me, I also felt at ease. The forest seemed safer than my mother did.
I took a few steps, deeper into the forest, and that’s when I heard faint music! Flutes and drums and accordions playing somewhere in the distance.
I thought maybe I was going insane, but, what did I have to loose?
I wandered forward, and the music got louder. I saw light through the branches, and that lanterns hung on tree branches and illuminated the area.
There was a large circular clearing where the grass and brush was worn down. In the clearing was a party.
There were creatures dancing all around. They were beautiful. Some had a pale skin tone, that seemed to glitter under the lantern light, and others had skin in hues of green and purple and blue. All of them had wings like dragonflies on their backs.
On the edge of the circle, five of the creatures were playing music.
I realized that they were of the fey. But these faeries were unlike any faeries that I had heard of. These were as tall as humans.
Only one of them seemed to notice me, and he was the most gorgeous boy I had ever seen, though, he was no boy. He was definitely a faerie.
He had a cascade of wild black hair that fell in waves along his shoulders. His skin was pale, but glittered with gold glints, and he had large golden-tinted wings on his back. He wore an open brown vest, and a pair of loose brown pants that ended in a ragged edges at his knees.
I walked out of the trees, and some of the others noticed me.
“Join us! Join us!” Some of them cried out.
My first thought was that I didn’t know how to dance, and then my second thought was that I wasn’t sure if any of this was real at all.
But, then the gorgeous faerie boy stepped out of the circle, and he held out his hand with a wide smile on his face. “Dance with me, lovely.”
It wasn’t a question, but I’m sure he knew the answer.
I took his hand, and it felt so warm in my hand, and the heat radiated throughout my body. It was such a welcome feeling from the cold, dark forest that I was in moments ago.
“What is your name, lovely?” He asked me.
“Mara,” I told him. “And, you?”
“I’d tell you, but then I’d have to kill you,” he said with a wink, and I felt a chill run across my skin.
He pulled me into the circle, and I was in the middle of the raucous crowd of dancing faeries. His hand still held one of mine, and the other was around my waist.
Before I could wrap my arm around his waist, someone passed a cup to me.
The liquid in the cup glowed yellow like the sun, and smelled sweetly. I took a sip, and then another, and soon the cup was empty. It tasted like honey, and sugar cookies, and warm summer days.
I was given another cup, but the boy took it from me. “You can’t drink too much, else you won’t make it through this night.”
“But it was so good,” I whined. “I want more. I need more.”
“If it is misfortune that you wish,” he said, and handed the drink back to me.
I gulped it down, and soon the cup had emptied, and I tossed it to the ground.
My head felt light, but my feet felt lighter. I felt like I could dance the night away.
This night was amazing, I wanted to remember this night, each and every moment, and I never wanted to leave, and I realized I had said all of those things out loud.
“Well, then we shall not waste a moment,” he said, and he spun me around, and soon we were lifting off of the ground, dancing in the air thanks to his wings.
We danced for a while before we landed to the ground.
I broke away from his grasp, spinning around, and around on my own accord.
I stole a cup of the glowing drink from a faerie, and I drank it so fast that it dribbled down the sides of my mouth.
Everything blurred around me.
My feet were not my own, they were a slave to the flutes and drums and accordion music.
I don’t know how long I danced until my legs ached, and I needed to catch my breath, but I couldn’t stop dancing. But, at the same time all I wanted to do was dance.
I kept dancing, around, and around, and around again until I felt my body giving out from under me. Dawn peaked out from behind the trees, and I fell to the ground.
My eyes closed on their own. My breath was sallow, and I realized that I was dying.
“She shouldn’t have drank so much of our nectar,” I heard someone say.
“Not the first.”
“Won’t be the last.”
I felt a hand on mine, and I weakly opened my eyes to see the faerie boy.
“I am sorry, lovely. But, you didn’t listen.”
He kissed my lips before everything went black.
Featured image: Enchanted Ways