Wednesday, August 11, 2004

A Fairytale for Elves and Clouds

Once upon a time there lived a cloud with a terrible sense of direction. He was always losing his way. He just couldn't blow along with the other clouds without something happening. People down below would sometimes look up at a clear, blue sky and notice a stray cloud racing swiftly across it as if trying to rejoin the rest of the clouds. One time a dense fog rolled over the countryside and decided to stay a while. The cloud lost his way so thoroughly that he had to wait for the fog to move on before discovering what had happened. He had drifted into a cave! And so the days and months and seasons and years passed and became a background for this lost, directionless cloud whose only strength was in losing his way. All this didn't bother him, though, because as most clouds, he had a silver lining. And that kept him cheerful.

At the same time in the Land of Elves there lived a small but very sweet girl-elf who could fly. Everyone was worried about her, not because she could fly (as most elves could fly), but because she was very good at it, so good that she had no idea how to land. She would just fly and fly and soon the whole world with its Land of Elves and all its clouds and caves would be left so far behind that it took all the magic of all the elves to bring her back again. And no one knew how to remedy this because she simply loved to fly. Once she flew so far away that it took half a year to find her, and that was only a lucky coincidence. She had flown so far past the sun that the Earth met her coming around in the other direction.

One day while the elf was busy flying and the cloud was busy losing his way, a violent storm appeared out of nowhere. It rained and hailed and thundered and lightninged while the wind blew furiously in all directions. And so it happened that the elf and the cloud collided with each other as the storm raged on and on. The elf and the cloud tumbled and whirled and spun and swirled together until the storm and the clouds and even the Earth were left far behind, not to mention the Land of Elves! Now it was black all around. Only an occasional star from somewhere distant twinkled indifferently through the darkness at them. There was nothing else to do so when they both had recovered they began talking to each other.

"Are you a cloud?" the elf asked the cloud.

"Yes, but not a very good one, I'm afraid. I'm always losing my way."

There was a silence broken at last by the cloud asking the elf, "Are you an elf?"

"Yes, and I have a problem, too. I can't help flying higher and higher, so high that I don't know how to come down again."

The elf and the cloud smiled at each other. A loud crash interrupted their thoughts. The cloud and the elf had collided with something hard. It was still very, very dark. Suddenly a voice all around them thundered, "Ha, ha, ha, ha! Who dares to set foot on ME, the Dark Side of the Moon!?"

"Only a simple cloud," answered the cloud in a trembling voice.

"Only a simple elf," answered the elf in her trembling voice.

"Ha, ha, ha, ha! You are my prisoners now. What will you give me if I let you go?"

"I don't have anything to give you," cried the elf. "I'm just a poor, little elf who doesn't know how to land."

"I don't have anything to give you, either. I'm just a poor cloud who keeps losing his way," answered the cloud as tiny droplets of rain formed on his surface.

"Ha, ha, ha, ha!" laughed the voice. "I know what you can give me! I've always wanted a pair of elfin wings and a cloud's silver lining. Ha, ha, ha, ha!"

"Never!" said the elf. "Without my wings I couldn't fly!"

"Never!" said the cloud. "Without my silver lining I would be unhappy and rain all the time!"

"Ha, ha, ha, ha!" laughed the Dark Side of the Moon.

The elf tried to fly away and the cloud tried to drift away. But it was no use. They were held tight. And so they waited..... and waited...... and waited....., but nothing happened, so they waited some more. Finally, almost at the same time, the cloud and the elf had the same idea. They each knew now what the other was thinking because in the time they had been held prisoner together they had grown very fond of each other.

"Maybe we better give the Dark Side of the Moon what it wants," said the cloud. "If you give it your wings, you could ride on me. I would be your wings. And if I were carrying you, I wouldn't need my silver lining anymore. You would be my silver lining."

"It would be even better than before," said the elf happily. "With you holding me, I could never drift off too far, and with me to guide you, you would never lose your way again."

And so they called to the Dark Side of the Moon that it could have what it wanted. The elf gave it her wings and the cloud gave it his silver lining. The Dark Side of the Moon kept its promise and gave the elf and the cloud their freedom. The cloud carried the elf back to Earth while the elf told the cloud which way to fly. In this way they lived many a wonderful adventure with each other and flew over all the lands and seas of the world. All the while they enjoyed sweet conversations which could only take place between an elf and a cloud. And they never grew tired of each other's company. But the Dark Side of the Moon was so mad about their happiness that it never showed its face to the Earth again.


Robyn said...

Inde that was by far the best faery tale I have read in a long while. You have out done yourself. Bravo!!
love and light,

ReaZ said...

Wow, that was very good! I enjoyed that one a lot.

Anonymous said...

What a beautiful story! Thank you very much for that - have you ever considered writing children's books? This very tale could make a bestselling picture book, maybe with drawings by whataretheirnames from the Sandman-staff... Keep up the good work, I love reading around here! =)

Indeterminacy said...

Just checking in from Poland. The first week we were in the mountain of Zar (Z pronounced like the French J in Jacques). The next days will be spent in more urban surroundings. This story was actually published in an Italian translation in an anthology of stories from the Internet. In the 90's I contributed a few short stories to an Italian E-Zine. I keep telling my Muse to draw a complete set of illustrations for the story so we can submit it somewhere. Stay tuned...

alix said...

that, sir, freakin' ROCKS! i am SO reading this story to my lil bit tonight!!

Synchronicity Evangelist said...

Great imagination. Profound meaning!