Behind a Fairy Door :: N2W 220403

Inspired by KL Caley’s #WRITEPHOTO
Write a short story about this photo.
 

fairy door
Photo credit: KL Caley

 

“Fairy Melangell, you will rise to receive criminal judgement by this court of the Realm of The Fey.”

The room stirred and spectators murmured about how the court might rule. The accused and her counsel stood — dread and disdain remaining visible on her face.

The leader of the five-judge committee waited for the room to settle and become silent before standing herself and then raising her voice to say, “If any in the gallery wish to be recognized as witnesses to this judgment, you may now stand and be thus recognized.”

Some murmuring resumed and over 40 adult fairies stood. Heads turned all around the courtroom taking note of who all were now standing.

The murmuring settled again into a thick silence and the judge resumed speaking dispassionately but with a tone of well-practiced legal authority. “Fairy Melangell – you are found guilty. . . .

The gallery of witnesses quietly gasped and some murmured either their agreement or disapproval.”

“Silence — the gallery will remain silent for the judgement.

“You are found guilty and your punishment has been established. You will once more cross over from our Realm of The Fey under escorted-arrest, briefly back into the world of humans and taken to the secret fairy Prison Taliesin. Before entering, your wings will be torn off — below the line of regrowth. You will never fly again but will wear the disgraced remnants of your wings so all who see you will remember the tremendous price paid for such a crime.

“The forfeited parts of your very body, your wings will be left to decay, fertilize and nourish the world you offended.

“You will then be taken to the door of Taliesin and thrown through the barrier into the realm from which no one returns. Have you any final words for this court?”

“I do sir. I want all my judgment witnesses to know my reason for committing the act you now punish me for.  I had good reasons for . . . “

“SILENCE Fairy Melangell! You know any reasons for this offense are of no concern, they are not germane. The role of this court and judgement was to establish if you had committed this crime. For the final time, without equivocation, did you commit this act?”

Melangell stood silent for a few moments, thinking as everyone in the room strained the hear even the sound of her breathing. “Yes – yes sir. I did to protect . . .”.

“SILENCE! This court forbids extraneous testimony. You know this is our law but you just assumed responsibility for both the charge and the damages done. You’ve wasted two chances to offer respectful good-byes or helpful apologies. Fairy Melangell — you are finished speaking.”

The judge switched  back to her official tone of voice. “Hear ye – hear ye, all within the reach of the voice of this court, Fairy Melangell has been charged and found guilty of violating our law in regard to interacting with the human world. She has been found guilty of teaching a human child to lie, something they cannot do without an original first-cause. Fairy Melagnell’s offense cannot be undone.  The injury she caused that child is permanent. Her punishment has been determined and presented. In accordance with our law – she will now be taken away.”

– = ≡ ≡ = –

“Look Mummy – there’s a little door on the side of that tree.  What is it?”

“It’s okay darling. You can touch it, even open it if you like.”

“Oh – there’s nothing inside.”

“Be careful about your conclusions dear. There are things that we can’t see which others can. Some say that only fairies can pass through the barrier inside that door – but we don’t know what might be beyond it.”

“Maybe a fairy can tell us Mummy.”

“Maybe, dear little girl, but they also might think the truth is too hard for us to understand, thus we’ll never know.”

The little girl made a disappointed face as she closed the little door but could not help but wonder what great secret might be behind it and who may have last gone through it.

 


Note: Because Wales in the United Kingdom is one source of fairy mythology, I chose Welsh names for both the accused and the prison name.  Whether this fictional law was just, applied wisely or was wildly presumptuous — well, that could be a topic for a complex other story.


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17 thoughts on “Behind a Fairy Door :: N2W 220403

  1. Will we ever find out why Fairy Melangell did what she did? I loved your story, especially the interaction between the mother and daughter at the end. This story would have been a good one for the upcoming Thursday Doors Writing Challenge. Maybe you can find another door into your imagination?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Janis.
      Thanks so much.
      I decided to leave it an open question so readers could think if there ever could be a good reason to teach a child how to lie. Isn’t that a great “thought experiment “?
      I hadn’t thought of the Thu Door writing challenge. I should look into that.
      Love ❤️ the idea.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Hii Zuzu,
      Agreed. I too can think of several good reasons. In this story I meant to call out Legal systems in general for how often they try to legislate morality and how often the application might match the letter of the law yet still still be wrong.

      Thanks for engaging the question.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I do hope you aren’t conflating England and Wales with your explanation.. you could be offending several million people on each side of Offa’s Dyke and the fairy punishment will be a breeze when set against that approbrium.
    Chilling little take that one… very Bros. Grimm

    Liked by 1 person

    1. No – I wasn’t but your point is well taken. I’ve adjusted my notes to better match my intention. Thanks for calling me out and forcing me to revisit and improve those notes.

      I have to own that this is a grim fairy tale though. That was intentional and I hoped the result would catalyze analysis leading the reader to finding fault both with this fictional law and how it was applied.

      Thanks “Someone” (WP did not catch your pen-name) for engaging the thoughts behind the story.

      Like

    2. Something is off with your gravitar address. I wanted to confirm that I’d adjusted my note to clarify your point to other readers and thank you again for calling me out on it. Please drop me a note if you see this so I know you received my feedback.

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      1. This is such a brilliant, thought-provoking entry, Gary. I love the concept: when and why should a child lie? Very intriguing. Thank you so much for another great entry. KL ❤

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      2. Hi KL –
        Wow, thanks for this kind feedback. You almost stumped me with this prompt but reading up and picking a few fairy-facts somehow got me on this thread and the characters pretty much took over from there. This one had me thinking too and I’m tempted to write a longer version of the story to drill into this and other ideas from this shorter version.
        I’m so pleased that you liked it.
        Fun stuff.

        Like

    1. Yea – but I also trying to decide if how she was censored regarding her reasons was as troubling. Law is a wonderful concept but it will never be perfect. So I think the adjudication of law needs to leave room for some exceptions but there is no way for that to ever be non-contentious either.
      This story bothers me in several ways and I may have missed the point of writing a “Fairy Tale”
      sigh. . .
      Thanks for giving it a read Shari.

      Like

    1. Hi IM.
      It’s so good of you to stop by. I hope all is well. I don’t think I’ve ever come across one before this prompt found me, but I can see how fascinating they might be. To meet this prompt, I had to read up some on fairies and still think I may have overlaid too much of a side of humanity that we frequently think does not serve it’s purpose well. I was looking for a clash of values – and this was the result. hmm.
      Thanks for giving it a read. 🙂

      Like

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