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Neopia's Fill in the Blank News Source | 19th day of Hunting, Yr 21
The Neopian Times Week 101 > Short Stories > Fallen: Feathers

Fallen: Feathers

by oily106

Fallen is a series of short stories, beginning with Fallen: Angel and continuing through Fallen: Friends, Fallen: Faeries and Fallen: Fyora. Read them in that order if you wish to understand the story better.

"When her first feather falls, you will know it’s begun…"

     Fyora’s words replayed in my head -- a warning to me, a prophecy we both knew would come true.

     Angel’s white forehead was delicately creased into a frown.

     "Dreamer," she said plaintively. "I don’t understand…" She was staring dumbfounded at the single white feather that had dropped from one of her broken wings.

     "Be happy," I said simply, watching the feather with a heavy heart.

     "I cannot be happy if you are sad," she responded.

     I gave her a tired smile.

     "Angel…" I began gently. "Do you have anything left of your… past… with the Faerie?"

     Again, sadness showed in her sapphire eyes as the Zafara nodded.

     "There is one thing… I will fetch it…"

     She dashed out of the kitchen and I heard her paws thump on the stairs. I watched the two feathers -- one glass, one real -- lying side by side on the counter. The glass feather reflected a distorted image of the real one in cruel mimicry. Suddenly and uncharacteristically angry, I raised my paw and brought it down on the glass feather. It shattered into a million fragments that spun across the surface. I had felt a bit dig deep into my paw and, cursing my stupidity, I extracted it and sucked my wounded paw, annoyed at myself. Angel needed help and I was putting my emotions first.

     I again heard pawsteps on the stairs and Angel skidded into the kitchen, narrowly missing the scattered fragments of glass. She was clutching a small box, in which I had often noticed her place things -- her little collections. She put it on the counter and deftly opened it. Rummaging around through pretty shells and shiny buttons, she fished out a small length of golden chain. It was as I had seen in the dream last night. The link at one end was broken in half roughly, as if wrenched from its other half. I knew that this chain had bound Angel to her Faerie, even through their fall. It was the symbol of all that was sacred about Faeries and Angel. I took it in my paws reverently.

     "This can help us find your Faerie," I said.

     "And then I will rise…" Angel sounded proud and haughty for a moment before lapsed into a wistful sigh. She then dropped her demeanour and became sad.

     "But my Faerie cannot rise…I am not fit to…"

     "You’re fine!" I burst out. "I journeyed to the new Uber Light Faerie and she’s the evil one! The others are evil, too! They’re not proper Faeries like yours! Fyora told me herself that she cannot control them. And I had a dream… the other ganged up to push out the only good Uber Faerie – yours!"

     Hope shone in Angel’s sapphire eyes. I smiled and glanced at the chain in my paws.

     "Where did you find it?" I asked.

     "This morning – it was by the side of my bed. I don’t know why. But it was ours -- I remember it…" The secret sadness showed in her eyes again.

     I chewed my lip.

     "Can you find your Faerie again, Angel?"

     Angel nodded slowly, hesitantly, doubtfully.

     "I’ll try…"

     She laid her beautiful white paw on top of mine and the chain. I stared at the golden links of the chain and felt light around me, cleansing my impure self. Was it Angel or her Faerie? I didn’t know. The chain blurred and I began to see an image appear…

     The vision was crystal clear, and it seemed real -- as if I was there. I was in a wood at night-time. It was shadowy and dim and the grey trees were densely packed together. I saw a light approach between the trees and instinctively ducked, even if I knew I could not be seen. The light was somehow dirty, or not as bright as it should have been. The glow resolved itself into the figure of a Faerie. The Faerie was dirty and bedraggled with torn and tattered wings and ragged dark blonde hair. Her dress was torn and she wandered barefoot. I knew her to be Angel’s Faerie -- a fallen Faerie. Her face was still noble and proud, even with her lank hair and sunken cheeks. Her eyes were still bright even if they seemed unfocused. She walked with a purposeful stride but her movements were vague. Even as a fallen Faerie, she was beautiful -- beautiful but also alien, lost in her surroundings, out of place, wrong.

     Little, common Faerie hid behind the trees, watching the Faerie entranced. I felt pity for the Uber Faerie and, again, anger at those who’d reduced her to this pitiful state. I watched her wander amongst the trees and tracked her with my eyes. Suddenly, she stopped and threw back her head. She stood stock still, staring upwards. I followed her gaze and saw a bright star, burning white, shoot across the night sky, leaving behind a blazing trail. The Faerie spoke as if to herself.

     "Seek the shooting star…"

     And then the scene blurred and faded…

     Angel and I were again standing in my kitchen. I looked at her and repeated the words her old Faerie had said.

     "Seek the shooting star…"

     Angel became serious.

     "We shall find my Faerie… I shall rise…"

     She closed her eyes in bliss. I stood by her and I raised my eyes upwards to the ceiling, my heart joyful.

     With Angel by my side, I could do anything…

     I saw, imprinted on my eyelids, the image of a starry sky with one solitary, pure white star shooting across it. And the star seemed to blur and merge into an image of Angel, her wings unbroken, speeding across the sky. And then she plummeted and fell and the image changed into a feather, drifting downwards, its pure brilliance illuminating the whole sky, brighter than the stars themselves.

     I smiled and opened my eyes. On the counter lay the feather and Angel turned to me, her wings rustling behind her.

     "Dreamer…"

     She picked up the feather carefully and placed it gently in my paw.

     It was no longer an omen of despair but a symbol of hope, and a present from an angel herself…

     You cannot have wings without feathers…

The End

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